Compiled for Illinois public libraries by John E. Hallwas of the Illinois State Historical Society
This twelve-month reading list includes novels, nonfictional works, and poetry – all by Illinois authors and expressive of the Illinois experience. Along with the twelve-month schedule are some alternative book titles, in case a library wants to customize the 2018 reading list by substituting another notable work of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry.
In August, 2018, Illinois will celebrate its 200th anniversary of statehood. In addition, Lincoln’s New Salem State Historic Site is celebrating its 100th year of live performances in Kelso Hollow, home to Theatre in the Park. For a century people have flocked to New Salem for live entertainment which makes it the longest continuously running outdoor venue in Central Illinois. Theatre in the Park will continue its tradition of historical/period productions as well as the founding of the United States of America and Illinois’ statehood by presenting 1776 as the opening production of its season. Theatre in the Park believes this production will be a perfect event to help kick-off a summer of bicentennial events in Central Illinois.
Show Times: May 18-20, 2018; 8:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.
Heartland is a multimedia historical program of folk songs, stories, and images that cover the width and breadth of the Midwest.
The Prairie State kicks off its 200th birthday party celebration on December 3, 2017, and the Illinois State Historical Society invites you to let us know what you are doing in your county to celebrate this milestone. Our website features an Events calendar that will highlight your events--bicentennial or otherwise historical--but only if you go to www.historyillinois.org and submit your information. Let us help you get the word out and while you're there, check out "Today in Illinois History" for a sampling of what people have been doing here for the last two hundred years or so.
Our year-end issue of Illinois Heritage is a veritable feast of delights. John Hallwas and Kathleen Spaltro highlight writers with Illinois connections and Cindy Reinhardt takes us to the "almost lost" town of Montgomery Station. Continue farther down into Egypt with photographer Gary DeNeal for a look at misty autumn moments downstate.
As we come to year's end, it's also time to reflect back on our Johnny Appleseed trees--all of which have gone to good homes throughout the state, and look forward to recognizing historic businesses and churches in Illinois. If you have a business in your town that is 100 years old or a church that is 150 years old (or older), please consider nominating them for recognition by the ISHS. Applications for both programs can be found in this issue.
Happy, happy holidays!