Creating the Land of Lincoln

Date(s) - 05/23/18
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Newberry Library

Hosted by
Newberry Library

Creating the Land of Lincoln

Wed, May 23, 2018 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM

How three constitutions built the modern Prairie State

In its early days, Illinois seemed destined to extend the American South. Its population of transplants lived an upland southern culture and in some cases owned slaves. Yet the nineteenth century and three constitutions recast Illinois as a crucible of northern strength and American progress.

Frank Cicero Jr. provides an appealing new history of Illinois as expressed by the state’s constitutions—and the lively conventions that led to each one. In Creating the Land of Lincoln: The History and Constitutions of Illinois, 1778-1870, he sheds light on the vital debates of delegates who, freed from electoral necessity, revealed the opinions, prejudices, sentiments, and dreams of Illinoisans at critical junctures in state history.

Cicero will engage in a discussion about the book with D. Bradford Hunt, the Newberry’s Vice President for Research and Academic Programs. After the conversation, Mr. Cicero will sign copies of the book, which will be available for purchase.

Frank Cicero Jr., a senior partner at Kirkland and Ellis LLP, served as a delegate for Illinois’s Sixth Constitutional Convention. The author of Relative Strangers: Italian Protestants in the Catholic World, he is also a member of the Newberry Board of Trustees.