A Childhood Lost & Found:

A Journey Back to the Lake Bluff Children's Home

The documentary film, A Childhood Lost & Found was shown locally to an enthusiastic audience by the Lake Bluff History Museum. Produced by Kraig Moreland, the film tells an emotional and heartfelt story of an orphanage, the children who lived there and the people who cared for them. The film contains archival photographs dating from 1894 when the home was founded and tells the story through interviews with individuals who grew up in the home and historic reenactments using local children and adults as actors.

The film represents the culmination of a two-year project that turned vision into reality, creating a full-length documentary that tells the story through the voices of those who lived and worked at the Children’s Home.

The project had its origins in a scene from the museum's 2008 Ghost Walk. Written by Cathy McKechney, the scene, "Dear Miss Judson" included letters written by parents and children to Deaconess Judson. These letters are part of the Vliet Center's extensive collection of materials.

The Vliet archives include photographs, letters, news clippings, scrapbooks and records from the Children’s Home, many entrusted to the Vliet Center by ChildServ, successor organization to the Lake Bluff Children’s Home. Research for this project started with review of materials in the archives and then expanded to include interviews with former residents and staff of the Home, and the re-enactments recently filmed by Kraig. To hear one child’s experience, click here.

To preview this heartwarming film, view the film trailer. The film can be purchased on dvd. Please complete and submit the order form, with payment or visit the museum to purchase a copy. Donations to help cover the costs associated with producing this documentary are welcome, and may be made online or by mailing check to Lake Bluff History Museum 127 E. Scranton Ave. Lake Bluff, IL 60044.