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Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society

The Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, established in 1908, is the scholarly publication of the Illinois State Historical Society. The peer-reviewed Journal welcomes articles, essays, and documents about history, literature, art technology, law, and other subjects related to Illinois and the Midwest. Submission guidelines can be found here.

The Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society is published quarterly and is available to everyone for purchase, discounts are included for members of the Illinois State Historical Society. Visit our Membership section for membership options and information.

To purchase individual issues please contact our office.

Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society

Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Spring 2020

Volume 113, Number 1

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The Spring 2020 issue of the Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society is printed and should be arriving to members’ mailboxes in the next few days. The Journal, the scholarly publication of the ISHS, is published quarterly and is a benefit of membership in the Illinois State Historical Society. Each issue includes articles, essays, book reviews, and documents about history, literature, art technology, law, and other subjects related to Illinois and the Midwest. Visit our Membership option under the "Support Us" tab for membership options and information. Click on the “Read More” button for a list of articles and reviews included in this issue.

Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Winter 2019

Volume 112, Number 4

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We close 2019 with three outstanding scholarly contributions to Illinois history. In “Getting to ‘Lake Michigan’: a 350-year Onomastic Odyssey,” Michael McCafferty, a linguist at Indiana University Bloomington, explores the origins of the placename, “Michigan.” While popular translations have long affixed the meaning “big water” to the placename “Michigan,” McCafferty finds that this myth is not supported in the linguistic evidence.

In “A Writer of More Than Usual Charm: The Dynamic Influence of Dr. Milo Milton Quaife and Harriet Martineau on Juliette Magill Kinzie’s Contributions to American Frontier Literature,” literary historian Franklin E. Court traces Quaife’s influence in both elevating Kinzie to, and preserving her place in, the canon of early nineteenth century American frontier literature.

In “Sorrow Comes to All: Bloomington, Illinois’s Demonstration of Community Participation in Civil War Grief,” Megan VanGorder explores the rituals and practices surrounding death and grief in the Civil War.

Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Fall 2019

Volume 112, Number 3

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Our Fall 2019 issue brings together culture and commerce, in three distinctive contexts. In “Florenz Ziegfield and the Creation of a Cosmopolitan Chicago,” Susan E. Hirsch explores the rise of high culture–classical music, opera, theater, the fine arts–and its corresponding ethic of cosmopolitanism through the work of the German immigrant, Florenz Ziegfield. The talented classical pianist was one of Chicago’s busiest cultural entrepreneurs during the Gilded Age. 

The commercial opportunities presented by the variety of forms of popular entertainment in Chicago attracted figures less noble than the Ziegfields. In “When Chicago Went to the Dogs: Al Capone and Greyhound Racing in the Windy City, 1927-1933,” Steven A. Riess traces the fascinating history of Chicagoland dog racing and its deep connections to the city’s crime syndicates. 

Our final article traces the trajectory of racial attitudes and policies in an affluent Chicago suburb. In “Race, Town, and Gown: A White Christian College and a White Suburb Address Race,” Brian J. Miller and David B. Malone summarize the evolution of Wheaton College and the larger community of Wheaton, Illinois on matters of race. Before the Civil War both college and town were well-known for abolitionism and relatively enlightened racial views.

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