"I am an invisible man. No, I am not a spook like those who haunted Edgar Allan Poe; nor am I one of your Hollywood-movie ectoplasms. I am a man of substance, of flesh and bone, fiber and liquids--and I might even be said to possess a mind. I am invisible, understand, simply because people refuse to see me."

 - Ralph Ellison's "Invisible Man"

Elise Ford and James O. Allen

Elise Ford Allen

Photo of Elise Ford Allen, first African American woman to edit and publish a newspaper in the state of Illinois - The Traveler Weekly.

-
James O. Allen Sr., husband of Elise Ford Allen

James O. Allen is the husband of Elise. The couple had ten children: Carol, James Jr., Gregory, Linda, Joy, Janet, Norman, Angela, Barbara, Timothy and Matthew. James was a printer and...

-
 Dr. Cecil Bruce Ford

Dr. Cecil Bruce Ford was the son of Major Geroge W. Ford.  He married Florence Harrison and the couple had four children: Elise, Florence, Bruce and Harrison. His life is detailed in...

-
Florence Harrison Ford, wife of Dr. Cecil Bruce Ford

Photo of Florence Ford, married to Dr. Cecil Bruce Ford. The couple had four children,  Elise, Florence, Bruce and Harrison. Florence Ford was a well-known seamtress in Peoria, Illinois....

-
Sisters

Elise Ford Allen and Florence Ford Pickett at Camp Butler in Springfield, Illinois as children.  The mansion house on the cemetery was the home of Major George Ford.  Annual family...

-
Young Elise Ford Allen

Photo of Elise early 20's.

-
Young James and Elise

The couple right before they were married.

-
Elise and James O. Allen

Photo of the married couple's first child, Carol. The picture was taken at her parent's home in Peoria, Illinois.

-
James in the Military

Photo of James O. Allen, left, and T. Morgan, United States Army at Fort Huachuca. 

-
Young James Military photo
-
Elise and James formal function

Elise and James with friends at a formal ball and dinner in Peoria, Illinois.

-
Elise and James at wedding of daughter

Photo of Elise and James at 1963 wedding of their daughter, Carol.

-
Ford Family Dinner

Florence Ford (married to Cecil Bruce Ford), Harriett "Hallie" Ford Goins (daugther of George Ford), Garfield Goins, husband to Hallie, and Janet Allen at a Christmas dinner at the...

-
A Dinner Gathering

Elise and James with friends and family at a dinner party. From left to right: Elise and James O. Allen, Florence and Charles Pickett, Sam and Herschel Mackey

-
Traveler Weekly Newspaper, 1968

Old newspaper front page of The Traveler Weekly, 1968.  The paper was established in the fall of 1966 as a single 8 1/2 x 11 sheet with local news items and Elise's editorials...

-
Peoria today, page 1

Peoria Today magazine article on Elise Ford Allen and the Traveler Weekly page 1.

-
Peoria Today, page 2

Article on Elise Ford Allen and the Traveler Weekly, page 2. Top Photo left to right: Janet Allen, Barbara Allen Randle, Joy Allen Stone, Angela Allen Henry, Carol Allen Adams, Linda...

-
Family Friends

Elise and James with daughter Carol and husband, Melvin and friends.

-
Family Christmas Card Photo 1970

Allen Family Photo - standing left to right, James Jr., Gregory, Melvin Adams. Sitting on floor left to right: Linda, Barbara, Joy, Angela, Janet (forward). Sitting on couch Left to right:...

-
Elise Allen for Mayor

In another first, Elise Ford Allen became the first Afircan American female to run for mayor of Peoria, Illinois in 1973.  She ran with the intention of bringing to light the plights...

-