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- DescriptionRemembering a region's storied past - In the 1950s and '60s, John W. Allen told the people of southern Illiis about themselves - about their region, its history, and its folkways - in his series of newspaper articles, It Happened in Southern Illiis . Each installment of the series depicted a single item of interest - a town, a building, an enterprise, a person, an event, a custom. Originally published in 1963, Legends & Lore of Southern Illiis brings together a selection of these articles, preserving a valuable body of significant local history and cultural lore. During territorial times and early statehood, southern Illiis was the most populous and most influential part of the state. But the advent of the steamboat and the building of the National Road made the lands to the west and rth more easily accessible, and the later settlers struck out for the more expansive and fertile prairies. The effect of this movement was to isolate that section of the state kwn as Egypt and halt its development, creating what Allen termed 'an historical eddy'. Bypassed as it was by the main current of westward expansion and ecomic growth, its culture changed very slowly. Methods, practices, and the tools of the pioneer continued in use for a long time. The improved highways and better means of communication of the twentieth century brought a marked change upon the region, and daily life longer differed materially from that of other areas. Against such a cultural and historical backdrop, Mr. Allen wrote these sketches of the people of southern Illiis - of their folkways and beliefs, their endeavors, successes, failures, and tragedies, and of the land to which they came. There are stories here of slaves and their masters, criminals, wandering peddlers, politicians, law courts and vigilantes, and of boat races on the rivers. Allen also looks at the region's earlier history, describing American Indian ruins, monuments, and artifacts as well as the native population's encounters with European settlers. Many of the vestiges of the region's past culture have all but disappeared, surviving only in museums and in the written record. This new paperback edition of Legends & Lore of Southern Illiis brings that past culture to life again in Allen's descriptive, engaging style.
- Author BiographyBorn in an Illinois log cabin in 1887, John W. Allen grew up in Hamilton and Saline counties. After graduating from the eighth grade at Hardscrabble School, Allen served as a teacher and an administrator in southern Illinois public schools for twenty-seven years, and as the historical director of the University Museum at Southern Illinois University for sixteen years. From 1953 to 1967 Allen wrote a weekly series of articles about southern Illinois that were circulated by more than three hundred newspapers.
- Author(s)John W. Allen
- PublisherSouthern Illinois University Press
- Date of Publication15/02/2010
- SubjectLocal History, Names & Genealogy
- Place of PublicationCarbondale
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintSouthern Illinois University Press
- Content Noteblack & white illustrations, maps, frontispiece
- Weight590 g
- Width152 mm
- Height228 mm
- Spine25 mm
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