We launch Volume 109 of the Journal with three stimulating contributions to Illinois history in the twentieth century. Peter Ellertsen’s “‘How Newness Enters the World’: Cultural Creolization in Swedish American Hymnals Published at Augustana College, 1901–1925” offers a fresh and innovative way of interpreting hymn culture and evolution in a denomination undergoing dramatic social change.
In “Sacrificing for a “Just Cause”: The World War I Memoir of Edward F. Paule, U.S. Engineers,” editor Jeffrey L. Patrick reproduces a valuable resource for scholars interested in the soldiers’ experience during World War I. Paule, from Belleville, served in the 114th Engineer Regiment. The regiment’s chief responsibility was to build and maintain roads during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive of 1918. What makes the Paule memoir compelling is that unlike the many letters written by American troops during the war, Paule’s writings were not subject to censorship by authorities.
In “Moral Imperatives and Political Realities: Edward Marciniak and the Fight to End Chicago’s Dual Housing Market,” Charles Shanabruch offers a sympathetic analysis of the important and often overlooked career of Edward Marciniak. Marciniak was a pivotal figure in a group of Catholic activists who made Chicago a center of Catholic civil rights activism in the mid twentieth century.