What It Is, What It Isn’t

What This Is

  • This is my Illinois history blog, a chance for me, a professional historian, to delve into topics both obscure and apocryphal, regarding my home state;
  • This is, “A History of Illinois,” so not encyclopedic nor definitive.  The big names will make appearances here, but perhaps not in ways that you’d expect.
lincoln_1858
Oh, the former Postmaster of New Salem will make appearances, but hopefully in surprising ways.
  • It will (hopefully) be a scholarly endeavor as well.  I footnote grocery lists.  Well, not really, but you take my point.  Historical writing, to my way of thinking, isn’t of much use if the sources are unknown.  Don’t worry; if you want to ignore the citations, you can do that.
  • It will also be a place where I can work out ideas that might appear elsewhere, but you read them here first, so there’s that.

What This Isn’t

  • This will not be a nostalgia trip, although topics of history and memory might just be discussed.
  • This will involve my personal reflections on the topic at hand, but nothing more.
  • This will not be a forum for debating the affairs of the day.  That’s why you pay a therapist or irritate the person next to you on the bus.
  • This will not be a Chicago-centric treatment of Illinois history.  Yes, Chicago is in Illinois.  Yes, its history is important and interesting.  No, don’t choose to write much about it here.

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