Belleville, IL – When the Illinois Municipal League held its annual conference here last fall, its members had a chance to tour the Belleville Labor and Industry Museum at the invitation of Belleville Mayor and League President Mark Kern. The tour was led (at left) by museum volunteer Pat Schmeder. The Labor and Industry Museum is the only public institution devoted to the history of the Labor and industry of Belleville and southwestern Illinois. Belleville was one of the most significant centers for the growth of Illinois industry, ranking third in the nation in the late 19th century and establishing some of the earliest and largest manufacturers in the United States. The Museum’s mission is to chronicle and interpret the area’s rich cultural heritage of Labor and industry.