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Studying past lives in Grayslake Cemetery

Studying past lives in Grayslake...

Raquel Harris's 5th graders used information from headstones to delve...

Studying past lives in Grayslake Cemetery

Studying past lives in Grayslake Cemetery

Raquel Harris's 5th graders used information from headstones to delve into the history of their community.
From origins in a small Robinson confectionary to mass production

From origins in a small Robinson...

Heath toffee bars satisfied WW II soldiers in the field and are still...

From origins in a small Robinson confectionary to mass production

From origins in a small Robinson confectionary to mass production

Heath toffee bars satisfied WW II soldiers in the field and are still made today, thanks to their demand.
Waiting for Johnny Appleseed Trees at the Strawbridge Shepherd House

Waiting for Johnny Appleseed Trees...

October 4th found several anxious recipients of Johnny Appleseed trees...

Waiting for Johnny Appleseed Trees at the Strawbridge Shepherd House

Waiting for Johnny Appleseed Trees at the Strawbridge Shepherd House

October 4th found several anxious recipients of Johnny Appleseed trees waiting for the delivery to arrive some two hours behind schedule.  Patient tree patrons were rewarded!

 

Today in history

2/20/1862

William Wallace "Willie" Lincoln died in the White House, likely from contracting typhoid fever.

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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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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 news item/event for consideration to be added to the Illinois State Historical Society website.  Upon review it, you will be emailed the status of the submission and possibly asked for additional information.  If approved we will post your submission 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

Liberty Bell of the West Celebration (Kaskaskia Island)

  • 29 June 2017
  • Author: Elaine Evans
  • Number of views: 543
  • 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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