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Along the highways and byways of our State

Along the highways and byways of...

Chicory and Queen Anne's Lace mirror the colors of the late summer sky...

Along the highways and byways of our State

Along the highways and byways of our State

Chicory and Queen Anne's Lace mirror the colors of the late summer sky along Prairie State highways.  (photo by William Furry)
Open for Bicentennial visitors

Open for Bicentennial visitors

Located at the corner of West Main and Combs Streets, D. D. Collins...

Open for Bicentennial visitors

Open for Bicentennial visitors

Located at the corner of West Main and Combs Streets, D. D. Collins built this home as a wedding present for his bride, Elizabeth Anderson.  He served as first President of the Village Board for...
A visit to the Lower Illinois River Valley

A visit to the Lower Illinois River...

Barge traffic on the Mississippi River still navigates the Father of...

A visit to the Lower Illinois River Valley

A visit to the Lower Illinois River Valley

Barge traffic on the Mississippi River still navigates the Father of Waters, giving pause to travelers along its Illinois banks.  (photo by Mark Flotow)

 

Today in history

11/24/1942

Three German-Americans and their wives are sentenced in Chicago federal court in the first treason trial ever held in Illinois. The men are sentenced to death and the women to fine and imprisonment.

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Historical Markers

Since 1934, the Illinois State Historical Society has erected more than 500 historical markers statewide. Subjects of historical significance to Illinois are co-sponsored by local organizations and supporters. The Illinois State Historical Society coordinates the placement and management of historical markers throughout the state.

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Illinois 200 submit your events

Submit your Bicentennial event

Are you an event organizer? Got an event you want on our Bicentennial calendar? Use the form below to submit it and after a quick review it'll be added to our events calendar. The form captures much more than just Bicentennial events though so please add any of your regular events, just select accordingly. The goal is to add events from all over the state to celebrate Illinois' rich history. Get involved and help us fill our calendar and get the word out about events in your area.

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    Please use the form below to submit your article/event for consideration to be added to the Illinois State Historical Society website.  Upon review it, you will be emailed the status of the article and possibly asked for additional information.  If approved we will post your article on our news roll and/or calendar of events.

    Please do not use this form to submit or follow-up on submissions for the Illinois Heritage or Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society. Instead visit the links below for the correct information.

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Latest News & Upcoming Events

Liberty Bell of the West Celebration (Kaskaskia Island)

  • 29 June 2017
  • Author: Elaine Evans
  • Number of views: 276
  • 0 Comments

Event date: 7/4/2017 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM Export event

Liberty Bell of the West Celebration (Kaskaskia Island)
It was on July 4, 1778, that George Rogers Clark and his men reached Kaskaskia, seizing it from the British and bringing the colonies’ battle for independence to the western edge of British territory in North America.  

Villagers celebrated by ringing a bell that is known today as “the Liberty Bell of the West.” Made in 1741, the bell is actually older than Philadelphia’s Liberty Bell, and it is no longer rung for fear of damaging it.
 
Activities at the state memorial begin at 1 p.m., Tuesday, July 4. They include:
 
  • David Joens, director of the Illinois State Archives and Illinois State Historical Society board member, will give the featured remarks titled “Proud to be from Illinois.” 
  • The tolling of church bells.
  • Music by the Chester Municipal Band with vocalist Steve Colonel.
  • A rifle volley from historic interpreters Les Companie Franche de La Marine de Fort de Chartres.
  • Plate lunches and other refreshments. (Some chairs will be available, but visitors are encouraged to bring lawn chairs. There will not be a tent.)
The event is sponsored by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, which operates the memorial; Chester Veterans of Foreign Wars and American Legion; the City of Chester, and the Kaskaskia Church Foundation. 

Kaskaskia Bell State Memorial is located on an island in the Mississippi River, about 60 miles southeast of St. Louis. Kaskaskia, the territorial and then state capital from 1809 until 1820, was once physically connected to the state, but the Mississippi River changed course in 1881, flooding much of the village and cutting it off from the rest of Illinois.
 
Today, Kaskaskia is reachable only from Missouri. Travelers must go to St. Mary, Mo., take Highway 61 to the Old Channel Bridge, turn right and then follow Kaskaskia Bell Markers for 5 miles.
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