Looking for history on the Web…

So where do you go for your historical information on the Web? Since I’m mostly interested in Illinois and Fox Valley history, I favor sites that are central to those areas.

My favorites start with, of course, the Reflections page over at the Ledger-Sentinel web site where my columns for the past couple years are stored since I can never remember what the heck I wrote when. Then there’s Early Chicago, which is one of the coolest history sites ever. Just click on the Encyclopedia link at the top of the splash page and you can look up just about anything having to do with early northern Illinois history. Strictly local is Elmer Dickson’s Kendall County GenWeb site, which is probably the best and most comprehensive local genealogy site on the web. Third is, courtesy of your tax dollars, the Illinois Secretary of State’s database web site. It’s one of the best, if not the best, state historical database site on the Web. Finally, when I’m looking fo actual books to download, it’s over to the Internet Archive. I’ve probably downloaded 70 books on Illinois and Midwest regional history from the site, many extremely rare and only available in university and museum libraries. But many have been digitized and can be downloaded as searchable PDF files. Have to watch out, however, for the books digitized by Google because while they download just fine, I find they can’t be searched. The good news is that often the same book will have been digitized by Google as well as other individuals and organizations.

Those are my go-to sites. What are yours?


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Filed under Illinois History, Kendall County

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