Cover for ferguson: Illinois in the War of 1812. Click for larger imageGillum Ferguson’s book, Illinois in the War of 1812 (University of Illinois Press), is the 2012 recipient of the Illinois State Historical Society’s Russell P. Strange “Book of the Year” award.  The award is presented annually to an author whose scholarship and research have made a significant contribution to the study of Illinois history.

Ferguson, a retired lawyer who currently resides in Naperville, served for twenty-five years as an Assistant United States Attorney in Chicago. He was presented with the award at the Illinois State Historical Society’s Illinois History Symposium and Awards Banquet, April 27, 2012, in East Peoria.

In Illinois in the War of 1812, Ferguson explores the lives of the civilian soldiers, military leaders, Native-American warriors, and heroes, villains, and opportunists who were drawn into the war, how their actions defined the conflict in the west, shaped the identity and boundaries of the Midwest, and propelled the nation toward its role as an imperialist power in the mid-nineteenth century.

Congratulations, Gillum!

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