Saturday, December 10, 2022


The Country and the City: Screening and Discussion of “Kaskaskia and the Pursuit of a More Perfect Union, Part 2”

Event date: 11/22/2022 6:30 PM Export event
Jenni Dahl
/ Categories: Events

The Country and the City: Screening and Discussion of “Kaskaskia and the Pursuit of a More Perfect Union, Part 2”

Watch a video program on our YouTube channel, or attend a screening and community discussion around the state

November 22, 6:30 p.m. CT
Chester Public Library, 733 S State St, Chester, IL 62233 

Kaskaskia and the Pursuit of a More Perfect Union examines what the complex history of Illinois’ first capital, Kaskaskia, can teach us about present day pursuits of a unified public. Through screenings and community discussions, the series will provide an in-depth look at the many demographic, cultural, and political shifts that have shaped Kaskaskia locally and impacted the democratic vision of the region and country.


The series will feature an overview of Kaskaskia’s history beginning with its founding by Kaskaskia Indians and French Jesuits near the confluence of the Kaskaskia and Mississippi rivers in 1703 through its integration into the newly independent United States in 1778 and designation as Illinois’s territorial capital and first state capital. We’ll also look at present-day Kaskaskia—a small island in the Mississippi accessible only by way of Missouri. Kaskaskia persists as one of Illinois’s smallest, yet most historic, municipalities, thanks to its residents’ dedication.

This history involves many groups of people – Indigenous and Black people, both enslaved and free, French and British people, Anglo-Americans from the South and the North, and subsequent immigrants – and many dramatic social, governmental, and economic changes that reflect the landscape of the state and country throughout time. The series will discuss the experiences of the Kaskaskia Tribe who remain integral to the community’s social fabric as well as contemporary African American life and the preservation and promotion of French American heritage in Randolph County.

By considering what ‘a more perfect Union’ might have meant at various times to various people – from those who lived in the place where the Liberty Bell of the West rang, to those in the present keeping the town’s legacy alive – we hope to stimulate thought and discussion about our own aspirations for a more perfect Union.

Kaskaskia and the Pursuit of a More Perfect Union is made possible in part by a grant from National Endowment for the Humanities A More Perfect Union initiative.

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