ISHS Receives Grant for Historical Markers
Illinois State Historical Society
The William G. Pomeroy Foundation of Syracuse, New York, has awarded the Illinois State Historical Society a $40,000 grant to erect 25 new historical markers over the next three years. The markers, which were outlined in an ISHS initiative last summer, will commemorate African-American, Native American, and women’s history around the state. The grant will offer matching funds to communities and historical organizations that have identified a historical event, person, or location of significance to Illinois’s narrative that has previously been overlooked, overshadowed, marginalized, or lost. Applications are available online at www.historyillinois.org.
The Pomeroy Foundation invited proposals from state historical societies last fall to create roadside and community marker projects that would enhance local history and provide educational opportunities. The ISHS’s proposal, which included new and diverse marker projects around the state, was approved on May 7, 2021. Some of the proposed markers include:
- Jim Gray Freedom Seekers and the Underground, LaSalle County
- 29th Illinois Colored Troops, Adams County
- Freedom Settlement/Turkey Hill, St. Clair County
- The George Carver Community Center, Peoria County
- Minnie Vautrin birthplace, Woodford County
- Barack Obama, First African American Presidential Campaign, Sangamon County
- Robbins and the Robbins Airport, First African-American owned airport and flight school, Cook County
- Burr Oak Cemetery, burial site for Emmett Till, Willie Dixon, and Dinah Washington, Cook County
- Shick Shack Hill, Potawatomie Chief, Cass County
- Club Cosmopolitan, Birthplace of Rock ‘n’ Roll.” St. Clair County
- John W.E. Thomas, Home of first African-American to serve in Illinois General Assembly. Cook County.
The Illinois State Historical Society has administered its historical marker program since 1934. Marker nominations, submitted by historical societies, community groups, and private organizations, are vetted for historical accuracy by the ISHS Historical Markers Committee and unveiled throughout the year.