Besides the Victorian Village at Rockford’s Midway Village, there is also a museum center. The featured exhibit while I visited was The Missing Link: Socks, Monkeys and Rockford’s Industrial Past, a showcase of sock monkeys and their history. A sock monkey museum!
These stuffed animals are made famous by the red-heeled socks that make up their bodies, in which Rockford’s sock-knitting industry played an important part from the 1870s until all the way through the 1990s. The Midway Village exhibit features a plethora of the creatures both decked out in costumes and in their own naked glory, both knit and in large fiberglass form. You can also learn about the history of the sock and monkey and see documents such as the original patents.
Site: Midway Village Museum Center
Location: 6799 Guilford Road, Rockford, IL 61107
Cost: Adults — $6; Children, 3 to 17 years old — $4; Free for members
Hours: Closed Mondays; Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm; Sunday 11am &ndash 5pm
Date: May 9, 2008