Sunday, August 9, 2020


Marker Details

Historical Marker:

Thy Wondrous Story, Illinois

The marker is located northwest of Galena at a roadside park on the north side of US 20 at its junction with IL 84.
No coordinates identified
Dedication Date:
Dedication By:
Division of Highways and The Illinois State Historical Society

Marker Description:
The fertile prairies in Illinois attracted the attention of French trader Louis Jolliet and Father Jacques Marquette as they explored the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers in 1673. France claimed this region until 1763 when she surrendered it to Great Britain by the Treaty of Paris. During the American Revolution George Rogers Clark and his small army scored a bloodless victory when they captured Kaskaskia for the Commonwealth of Virginia, and Illinois became a county of Virginia. This area was ceded to the United States in 1784, and became in turn a part of the Northwest Territory and the Indiana and Illinois Territories. On December 3, 1818, Illinois entered the Union as the twenty-first state. Nathaniel Pope, Congressional delegate from the Illinois Territory in 1818, persuaded Congress to set the northern border of the new state sixty miles above the previous line which had run from the southernmost tip of Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River. Thus, part of the lead mine region around Galena, the site of Chicago and the fourteen northern counties of the state became a part of Illinois. Alarm spread across northwestern Illinois in 1832 when Black Hawk and a band of dissident Sauk and Fox Indians crossed the Mississippi River into Illinois. Stockades dotted the area until the defeat of the Indians cleared the way for increased white settlement.

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