Kathi Kresol has worked for the Rockford Public Library for many years, the last several years as a manager. In 2021 Kathi was asked to organize the Library District’s new Mobile Library Services and she is excited by the new challenges presented by managing that department.
Kathi Kresol has been researching the history of Northern Illinois for almost two decades. She has two solo books “Murder and Mayhem in Rockford, Illinois” and Haunted Rockford, Illinois”. Kathi has also collaborated with other local authors to share several short articles in four books featuring compilations of Rockford authors.
Kathi loves to share the stories she researches in presentations for local organizations and the Haunted Rockford Events. The local newspaper, Rock River Times has shared Kathi’s stories for several years. The column “Voices from the Grave” has allowed Kathi to share her passion for history with a larger part of Rockford’s Community. She is always honored when someone mentions reading one of her stories.
Kathi’s main goal in sharing her stories, whether they are true crime, ghost stories, or local history is to honor the lives of the men, women and children who came before. Some of the stories reflect a tragic moment in these peoples’ lives. But Kathi also tries to show the courage that the survivor’s displayed as they move forward from the worst possible moment. She also hopes that these stories illuminate the compassion that the folks of Rockford always have displayed to those who are suffering.
Kathi tries to weave the history and the legends together with personal experiences in sharing the ghost stories. Her goal is not to convince anyone to believe in ghosts. She invites folks to read the stories with an open mind and decide for themselves whether these tales are just interesting legends that have been passed down or true ghostly encounters. For maybe it is as Einstein once said, “The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious.”
An obsessive researcher, Kathi is never far from a stack of books or a box of photographs. She has been digging into Rockford’s history for nearly 20 years.
Between her job with the Rockford Public Library, and her role as local Rockford Historian, Kathi gives dozens of presentations each year. Kathi’s daughter Amber also works with the Library and she and Kathi were delighted when they were presented with this very cute portrait of the two of them after they gave a talk to a group of young people.
Kathi Kresol has been researching Rockford’s History for many years. She shares the fascinating stories she uncovers through her business Haunted Rockford Events, during the haunted history tours she organizes, and with history stories on her popular website www.hauntedrockford.com. Kathi also publishes history stories in her column ‘Voices from the Grave’ in the Rock River Times. The ‘Voices from the Grave’ stories can also be read on the Rock River Times website here.
Kathi is obsessed with history and she loves the opportunity to share this passion through the stories she collects. A member of the Rockford Historical Society, Kathi is always digging through Rockford’s past and she gives all the credit for her researching skills to the Rockford Public Library’s goddesses of Local History, Jean Lythgoe and Jan Carter.
Kathi loves sharing her enthusiasm for reading any way possible. She started teaching history using ghost stories when she homeschooled her children. Kathi enjoyed the research and the ghost stories so much, she wanted to share them with the Rockford Community. She found the perfect solution in forming Haunted Rockford Paranormal Tours in 2004. It has allowed her to work with some great people from all over Illinois and Wisconsin. Kathi feels honored that she can share the stories of the men, women, and children who settled Rockford and gave so much to create such a rich history.
Besides researching, writing, and organizing events, Kathi gives presentations all over Illinois on aspects of local history. She has been interviewed for several radio shows, local newscasts and newspapers.
Kathi’s main inspiration comes from her four remarkable children and “the guy who brings her coffee”, John. Her family supports her by allowing her to drag them to historical places, listening to the stories, helping her “look for dead guys”, and putting up with her absences when she disappears to research or write.