On this episode of the Forgottonia Project, we conclude our conversation with Marion Cornelius about the incredible history of Camp Ellis, a massive WW2 Army camp that was located right here in rural Forgottonia.
These past few weeks, we’ve been learning about sundown towns and the impact they’ve had on rural America today (Check out the links below to other blog and podcast topics around this topic). We were stunned to learn that our informed expert Dr. James Loewen (author of Sundown Towns & Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong”) spent many hours conducting research for his book right here in our own neck of the woods. Although Dr. Loewen lives on the east coast and conducted research throughout the country, a large portion of his work focused on his home state of Illinois; including the communities of western Illinois, collectively known as Forgottonia. Dr. Loewen poured over census records, studied maps, and visited with local historians, librarians, and anyone else willing to speak to him. We recommend you get a hold of the book to read for yourself. We’d also encourage you to check out the sundown town database on Loewen’s own website linked here - Loewen’s website - Sundown Towns Database.