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Becoming a member not only supports the Illinois State Historical Society, but also delivers excellent benefits to you giving you an excellent source of historical literature and resources. We offer multiple membership options for all stages and income levels. Look at our Membership area to find a plan that will work for you and join TODAY.

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Today in history

12/6/1830

John Reynolds is inaugurated as Governor. He later wrote a history of the state's early years from 1673 to 1818, the year of statehood. It was published in 1852.

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Publications

Publications

Illinois Heritage is our publication designed to encourage various professional, amateur historians and the general public to explore and write about Prairie State history for a broad audience.

The Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society is the scholarly publication with peer-reviewed Journal articles, essays, and documents about history, literature, art technology, law, and other subjects related to Illinois and the Midwest.

Historical Markers

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.

Our online store is now open

The Illinois State Historical Society has worked hard to open an online store which features literature and hard-goods which are related to Illinois. These are often hard to find or limited run items.

If you have a history buff in your family that is hard to buy for this is your place to shop! While anyone can purchase items we offer additional discounts to ISHS members. Visit our store to browse the current inventory of items, item availability and inventory will change often.

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Latest News

Dr. John Weir (1809-1878) Historical Marker Dedication

Madison County Historical Society

Dr. John Weir (1809-1878) Historical Marker Dedication

The Madison County Historical Society (MCHS) invites the public to attend the dedication of a new Illinois State Historical Marker on Sunday, Dec. 5, 2021, at 2 p.m. at 715 N. Main Street in Edwardsville. The new ISHS marker will commemorate the home and work of Dr. John Weir (1809-1878). Sunday’s dedication also serves as a kick-off for the Society’s Centennial year. The first meeting of the Madison County Historical Society was held on Dec. 3, 1921, the 103rd anniversary of Illinois statehood.

Illinois Heritage, November–December 2021

Volume 24, Number 46

Illinois Heritage, November–December 2021

In this issue of Illinois Heritage we explore the “Badger Huts” of Jo Daviess County, the destruction of an elegant Italianate farm house in Springfield, the remarkable career of author and editor William Maxwell, Ottawa’s tent colony for the treatment of tuberculosis patients, the elegant art of Christia M. Reade, Joseph Harker’s ascent from the coal mines of southern Illinois to the presidency of the Illinois Woman’s College in Jacksonville, and so much more, including several newly installed historical markers around the state.

If you haven’t already done so, now is the time to renew your ISHS membership. In the coming weeks you will be receiving reminders in the mail from the University of Illinois Press, which handles our subscription and membership renewals. Early renewals help cut down on costs and give us a leg up on the new year. Thanks to all of you who have already sent in your renewals. We look forward to hearing from you in 2022.

William Furry
Executive Director

 

The Mysterious Bard of Sangamo: Early Illinois poet brought to life in new video production

Illinois State Historical Society

The Mysterious Bard of Sangamo:  Early Illinois poet brought to life in new video production

John Hancock, a well-traveled, heart-broken poet, arrived in Springfield in the summer of 1831. His journey began in Cornwall, England, in the late 18th century, with stops in Italy, France, London (where he studied law), and Canada before his arrival in the Sangamo Country, where he secured a job selling whisky and sundries in Jacob Capps’ Grocery. According to ISHS director John Hallwas, professor emeritus of history and English at Western Illinois University and a Medievalist who has written more than 20 books about Illinois history and culture, Hancock was the finest poet in the Midwest in the 1830s, a writer of exceptional depth who wanted to capture the Prairie experience in verse. He succeeded admirably. Hallwas’ book, The Poetry of H: Lost Poet of Lincoln’s Springfield (Ellis Press, 1982), is the basis for his new play, The Mysterious Bard of Sangamo, which was recorded this past summer.

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Submit your local history event

Do you have an exciting local history news story or an event that you would like to share? Use this form to submit it and after a quick review it will be added to our news roll or events calendar. The goal is to add news and events from all over the state to celebrate Illinois’ rich history. Get involved and get the word out about news and events in your area.

 

 

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