"His great grandmother's brother was Geronimo."
"He wanted to tell us about the dead person buried under the tree in his front yard."
"She rode a horse to school, and her father paid the livery man $1 a year to stable the horse."
"For the senior class trip, they went to Rock Creek at the Kankakee River State Park."
These were some of the comments my students made after their first contact with the descendants of French-Canadians whom they were about to interview. Few experiences in my more than 30 years of college teaching have given me the joy I felt when my students became connected with their community and local history during this project.
These web pages offer local, state, and national historians insights about the French-Canadian immigrants in northeastern Illinois. Indeed, this project will continue to not only benefit my Western Civilization students as they learn local history during the transcription work (the writing of history), but also benefit KCC as the KCC Cultural Diversity Committee, local historical societies, and local community as a whole thank the college for preserving an essential part of local history.
At KCC, we can all take pride in this project and welcome every opportunity to inform the public about these web pages. Finally, this project may also offer a model for documentation of family history to those who access the web pages. Upon completion of the project, I sent the web page address link to Professor Tim Draper who sponsors H-Illinois. This website links historians across the country.
Dr. James F. Paul
Professor of History and Philosophy at
Kankakee Community College
Revised November 2005