Illinois to create marker for original northern boundary
YORKVILLE, Ill. (AP) — Officials in northeast Illinois have approved plans for a historical marker to commemorate the original location of the state’s northern boundary.
The aluminum cast marker will be installed onto an eight-foot aluminum pole in Yorkville’s Town Square park this summer, The Beacon-News reported . The city hosts events and observances in the park.
Alice Fellers of Crystal Lake came up with the idea when she was researching a project for the Illinois Bicentennial and discovered the original marker between Plano and Sandwich was missing. The original border would’ve put the Chicago area in Wisconsin, she said.
“Illinois would have been very different,” Fellers said. “People had the foresight that it was important (for Illinois) to have the waterway access to the other states.”
The new marker will tell the story of how Illinois U.S. Rep. Nathaniel Pope introduced an amendment that pushed the border further north and gave the state access to Lake Michigan. The measure was passed in 1818.
It will also be a part of a virtual geocache project that’s meant to encourage people to go outside and explore places they may not have originally considered visiting, Fellers said.
Geocaching is an outdoor activity where participants use a GPS to find hidden containers that often have little trinkets. Fellers’ virtual project will give people information at the cache site instead of a small token.
“I thought the story of Illinois’ original boundary line was fascinating,” Fellers said. “The story ties perfectly into Illinois’ Bicentennial and is a great tie-in to the virtual geocache opportunity given the subject is directly related to location and latitude positioning.”
Fellers is donating $3,400 to fund the marker. Yorkville will be responsible for maintenance.
Information from: The Beacon-News, http://beaconnews.chicagotribune.com/