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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

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Verna Ross Orndorff Student Essay Award

Illinois Heritage, May–June 2021

Volume 24, Number 3

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To our readers:

In this issue of Illinois Heritage we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Illinois State Archives, the venerable institution that houses the state’s most important government records. We also announce the winners of the 2021 “Best of Illinois History” awards.

Contributor Clark “Bucky” Halker, labor historian and former director of Illinois Humanities, explores Illinois’ rich history of songwriting and labor activism for the earliest days of coal mining through the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), focusing on the strong religious roots of the movement. In his “Forgotten Voices of Illinois History” essay, John Hallwas reintroduces us to John Hay, the poet, biographer, diplomat, and statesman who had the ear of presidents from Lincoln to Roosevelt. Candace Summers writes about the relatively unknown Bloomington artist Emily Howard, and Todd Carr of Elizabethtown takes us on a spring waterfall hike in the Shawnee National Forest.

Thanks to all of you for renewing your membership in the Illinois State Historical Society. You sustain the great work that began in 1899, to “foster awareness, understanding, research, preservation, and recognition of history in Illinois.” With your continued support, Illinois history will always have a great future.

2021 Best of Illinois History Awards

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Congratulations to this year’s achievers. You have given all of us much to discover. Thanks for your hard work and dedication to Prairie State history!

The COVID-19 pandemic was, despite the nationwide lockdown, a banner year for Prairie State history, as this year’s “Best of Illinois History Awards” attest. Nominations came in from all over the state and quite a few from beyond our perimeters, suggesting that Illinois “Wondrous Story” has wings.

This year’s Best of Illinois History harvest includes teachers and students, scholars and researchers, volunteers and professionals, writers and editors, and young and old—people from all walks of life who have broadened our knowledge of what it means to be an Illinoisan and to call this landscape home.

Click on the "Read More" button to view the full list of award winnters.

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