From the Western Observer, April 23, 1831.
I stumbled across this ad from the Western Observer, a Jacksonville newspaper, dated April 1831. It throws a wrench into everything we think we know about the frontier.
It is the literal elephant in the room that brings together various threads questioning standard historical narratives that privilege patriarchy, whiteness, and Americans’ obsession with manifest destiny. Continue reading
A good writer must do two things every day: read a little and write a little. Today we’ll discuss the writing a little and why my writing this blog is worthwhile. It takes time to sit down every week and type up a few thoughts on my research, but that in and of itself is very much a part of the research and writing process. Continue reading
A year ago today, we dedicated the Khalaf Al Habtoor Archives and welcomed President Jimmy Carter as our very special guest. The Archives at Illinois College are dedicated to promoting peace and social justice through our collections. As a researcher, I share that commitment and want my work to promote social justice. Continue reading
The historical marker along Michagan Ave. in Jacksonville showing the location of the North Immanuel Cemetery, the burial grounds for the Illinois State Hospital for the Insane. Note that the first patient and the first person to buried here were both female.
What we know of history is heavily edited. Edited by memory, shame, pride, or one’s right to privacy. In American Athena, I’m not just interested to know what happened to educated women, I’m interested to know what happened to an entire community where women were educated. There’s a big difference. Simply educating women is not enough to overcome deeply engrained patriarchal systems. But does it help?