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fied adjacent territory and convert it into a national park. This movement, having lain dormant for a year or more, was revived in the latter part of April by the Federation of Women's clubs in convention at Granite City, and has since been given additional endorsement by all the women's clubs, one after another, in that part of the State.
It would be very gratifying indeed to have the general government take earnest action in this movement and push it through to concrete results. But still more gratifying would it be to the citizens of Ilinois if our Legislature would gain possession of that wonderful monument of a prehistoric Illinois race the largest and most imposing in the United States—and preserve it as a State park. The bill introduced in the last Legislature, by Hon. Norman G. Flagg, for the appointment of five commissioners “to investigate the historic importance of the Cahokia mound; to ascertain its adaptability for the purpose of a State park, and ascertain the price for which the State can purchase the property,” etc,, should be reintroduced early in the next session, and speedily passed. In the meantime, however, should Congress seriously undertake the acquisition of the mound for a national park, the State Historical Society and the people of Ilinois generally, will most willingly lend their aid and encouragement to the accomplishment of that end.
imposing in the vill introduced the appointment of
THE ILLINOIS STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY AND THE ILLINOIS STATE HISTORCAL
Communicated by Dr. J. F. Snyder. To the Editors of the Journal:
As is generally known, the Illinois State Historical Library was instituted by the Legislature in 1889, and placed in the control of three trustees appointed by the Governor; and that ten years later, in 1899, the State Historical Society was organized with only Legislative sanction of the State incorporation laws. In 1903 Judge Beckwith caused the Legislature to enact an amendment to the law creating the Historical Library, providing “That the Illinois State Historical Society be and the same is hereby declared a department of the Illinois State Historical Library,” to be furnished by the Library with stationery, postage, etc. The intention of that control and oversight by the Library, Judge Beckwith explained, was that the Historical Library, a State institution, should watch over and foster the Historical Society until it became strong enough to stand alone. The appropriations since made by the Legislature for maintenance of the Society have always contained the mandate that "said sum shall be expended by order of the board of trustees of the State Historical Library,” and have been so expended. It must be generally conceded that the Illinois State Historical Society, under the fostering care of the Library trustees, has grown to be quite a robust infant; and it is the opinion of very many that the time specified by Judge Beckwith for it to lay aside its nursing bottle and swaddling clothes and assume management of its own affairs, has now arrived. A majority of the members of the Society believe that it should now be relieved from the incubus of that paternalism and be permitted to claim rank with the Historical Societies of other states. They think the Legislature should be asked to make its appropriations for support of the Society payable to the order of the directors of the Society, instead of to the trustees of the Library, as heretofore.
And why not? True, the directors of the Society are not required to give bond for security of State funds or property entrusted to them. Neither are the trustees of the Historical Library. The board of fifteen directors of the Historical Society includes the three trustees of the Library. The high standing of those fifteen guardians of the Society is well known for intellectual ability, probity of character, moral integrity and conscientious honesty that can not be excelled in the State. Why, then, can not, and should not, they be entrusted with the pittance biennially appropriated by the Legislature for the Society as well as the three trustees of the State Historical Library? Can anyone advance a sensible reason why this change should not be effected?
J. F. SNYDER, M. D. Virginia, Ills., June 1, 1910.
ANOTHER MORRISON ANECDOTE. With his fine classic features and Apollo figure, his splendid gift of oratory, and great ability as a lawyer, Col. Don Morrison was an energetic, industrious and very successful financier. Seeing with prophetic vision the coming greatness of Illinois, and rapid enhancement of its land values, he commenced immediately after the close of the Mexican war to secure possession of large tracts of land. Each volunteer serving in that war received from the government a warrant for 160 acres of land. Very many of those enlisted men, improvident and unthrifty, caring nothing for land and wanting ready money, sold their warrants for sums ranging from $150 down to $50, and even less. Don saw his opportunity, and having a rich old bachelor uncle, Guy Morrison, who loaned him all the money he wanted on easy terms, he bought warrants and with them entered thousands of acres of government land in this State and Iowa.
While at that, it was said, that in his greed for land, Don “entered out” several old pioneer settlers who, too careless and negligent to pay the government for their claims, had for years lived upon them and improved them into fine farms, with no legal title to them whatever. There were those, or course, who envied Don's prosperity, openly declaring that he had the title to many an acre of land that he dared not set his foot upon, and attributing to him a great deal of crookedness that he was doubtless innocent of. About that time Governor Reynolds, just home from a session of Congress, met Don one day on the street, and after cordial greetings, inquired, “What are you doing these days, Don?” “I am still entering and buying land,” Don answered. “Well,” said the Governor, “you must have a lot of it by this time.” “Yes," said the Colonel, “I have, and I expect to be a rich man if I live twenty-five years longer." “I guess you will be, Don,” remarked the Old Ranger, "if you can manage to keep out of the penitentiary that long."
TO OUR READERS. The chief want of the Journal is original papers, upon any topic connected with Illinois history. Biographies of noted pioneers, sketches and anecdotes of men and women prominent in the early political, social, military, or industrial affairs of the State; personal reminiscences of bygone events, natural phenomena or extraordinary occurrences, still remembered, are particularly desired. Original contributions are obviously of much more interest and value in a periodical of this kind than reprints which, tho new to many, to others bear the flavor of a twice told tale. In every county of the State are scraps of local history, as that of important suits or criminal trials, and other proceedings, in the courts; the inception and growth, or failure, of certain industries; in river counties, of the old-time boating and river traffic; in a limited number of counties, of former contests for location of the county seat; and in many, of the laying out or founding of new towns, their success and growth, or their decline and disappearance—scraps of history preserved in the main by oral transmission from one generation to another, fractional parts of the integral history of the State and its people, in many instances well worthy of perpetuation in permanent form in these pages.
One function of the Journal not yet recognized by its readers-indeed not yet mentioned by its managers-is that of a medium of intercommunication of opinions concerning the progress of State historical studies and research, and of recently published books and addresses bearing upon Illinois history. It would be very satisfactory to members of the State Historical Society to exchange views and ideas, between annual meetings, upon the course, progress and management of the Society, on
probably be donary and Society, well be afforded se lines,
the changes and reforms needed, on what is done or can probably be done to secure a new State building for the Historical Library and Society, and other kindred matters. Space in our pages can well be afforded for free expression of sentiments and suggestions on these lines, the writers, of course, signing their communications and bearing the responsibility for what they contain.
OLD FORT CREVE COEUR. Dan R. SHEEN WILL TAKE NEWSPAPER MEN TO VISIT ITS
THIRD SITE. In the belief that he has discovered the actual site of Fort Creve Coeur, built by the Sieur de LaSalle in 1680, on the eastern shore of the Illinois river, opposite the now existing city of Peoria, Dan R. Sheen, the attorney, will take a party of newspaper men across the river to make an investigation.
This constitutes the third discovered site of the historic fort, but Mr. Sheen is convinced that the site on his land in Tazewell county is the only one entitled to recognition. In latter-day investigations the first site was discovered by the late Major Wightman, for a number of years city engineer, and he located it at a point on the crest of the hill opposite the lower end of the village of Averyville and more than half a mile from the shore of the river. This site received the approval of John King, the veteran local historian, who, at his own expense, erected a stone there with a suitable inscription. The other site is two or three miles below the city near the coal mine operated by the late J. R. Hilliard and there the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution has placed an inscribed stone. Now comes Dan Sheen with his site nearly midway between the other two and located at a point opposite the foot of Hamilton street.
He declares that distinct traces of the old fort are still visible at this point and that it tallies exactly with the description of Father Hennepin, who accompanied the LaSalle expedition and wrote its history. It is nearer the