100 Years of Women’s Suffrage

One hundred years ago, on August 18th, 1920, the United States government ratified the 19th Amendment, giving American women the right to vote. One hundred years ago, after decades of organizing, marching, petitioning, picketing, publishing pamphlets, and holding conventions, women were finally allowed to fully participate in their government. Of course, this ratification was only a stepping stone—as it omitted the rights of all women.

The 19th amendment specifically stated that citizens couldn’t be denied the right to vote on the basis of sex—that doesn’t mean that there weren’t still other avenues by which voters could be discriminated against and disenfranchised.Read More

Try your hand at these Lincoln-era recipes

Have you ever wondered what Abraham Lincoln ate in his day? Lincoln wasn’t known to be much of a foodie—he had simple taste in cuisine and often skipped meals altogether. However, there are a few unique dishes that he’s rumored to have enjoyed, so we decided to recreate two of them to get a glimpse into Lincoln’s life.* Download our printable recipe cards to try your hand at these recipes at home! 

 *We made minor adjustments to the original recipes to ensure they would be appealing to modern tastes. 

Corn dodgers

This simple, satisfying food is essentially a savory cornmeal patty that can be fried or baked.Read More

Improved Access and Preservation for the Lincoln Prints and Ephemera Collection

When imagining an artist’s rendering of the sixteenth president, you might first envision something like George Peter Alexander Healy’s famous 1869 painting Abraham Lincoln that depicts the seated, contemplative statesman, or perhaps Norman Rockwell’s 1964 Lincoln the Railsplitter portraying a young beardless Hoosier with axe in one hand and a book in the other. What might not immediately come to mind is something like Midwestern meat processor John Morrell & Co.’s 1963 Pictorial Autobiography of Abraham Lincoln, a commemorative calendar featuring colorful renditions of Lincoln’s life by Isa Barnett for each month. That’s just one of the nearly nine-hundred items from the IHLC’s Lincoln Prints and Ephemera Collection (MS 1045) to be available for patron use upon our reopening to the public (pending state and university regulations for managing the COVID-19 pandemic).Read More

Settling in Knox County: The Eames Family Letters

The settlement of Knox County, Illinois, began in the second half of the 1820s. The earliest settler families came in 1828, largely from Kentucky.  In May of 1830, a public meeting was held to discuss the possibility of county organization. A group of prominent citizens came together to address a petition, which was presented to Judge Richard M. Young of the fifth Judicial Circuit. The petition group proved to the Judge that Knox had 350 inhabitants, the number of residents required by law to form a county. On June 10, 1830, Judge Young declared the county organized.  

Soon after, the county began to grow.Read More