Cover for EKBERG: French Roots in the Illinois Country: The Mississippi Frontier in Colonial Times

French Roots in the Illinois Country

The Mississippi Frontier in Colonial Times
Awards and Recognition:

Winner of the Kemper and Leila Williams Book Prize for best book on Louisiana history for 1998.

Winner of the Kemper and Leila Williams Book Prize for the Best Book on Louisiana History, French Roots in the Illinois Country creates an entirely new picture of the Illinois country as a single ethnic, economic, and cultural entity. Focusing on the French Creole communities along the Mississippi River, Carl J. Ekberg shows how land use practices such as medieval-style open-field agriculture intersected with economic and social issues ranging from the flour trade between Illinois and New Orleans to the significance of the different mentalities of French Creoles and Anglo-Americans.


"A scholar's delight. . . . Ekberg is the first historian to call attention to the unique pattern of French colonial settlement in Illinois."--John Mack Faragher, American Historical Review

"A great comprehensive revisionist work on colonial Illinois, this should become a brisk seller early on and remain in demand for many years to come. Quite simply, no respectable library--public, college, or university--should be without this book."--Robert McColley, author of Slavery and Jeffersonian Virginia

"Ekberg has produced an extraordinarily learned and yet most readable book. . . . A revolutionary book . . . [that] sheds subtle light on the significant differences between the French and English colonial experiences."--Morris S. Arnold, Louisiana History

"This book will remain the definitive study on this subject for a long time. It should be required reading for anyone, scholar or layperson, curious about life in the French settlements in North America."--Pierre Lebeau, Journal of Illinois History


Carl J. Ekberg, a professor emeritus of history at Illinois State University, is also the author of the award-winning Colonial Ste. Genevieve: An Adventure on the Mississippi Frontier.

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