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Tuesday, June 23, 2015 04:01 pm

Blind bowling and an education insurrection at SSU

Highlights from the second issue of Illinois Times

It didn't take long for Illinois Times to find controversy back in 1975. The second issue of the fledgling paper featured an expos√© on Sangamon State University's internal struggle for power and self-determination, along with an angry letter against the ERA.

The cover story for this issue documents how Sangamon State University began in 1969 as a new paradigm in higher education, with very wide parameters on what was taught and how. Inevitably, that led to disagreements between the teaching faculty and the school's leadership. At the time, the story probably raised some hackles, but now it serves as a fascinating look back at the history of SSU. The photo below is SSU president Robert Spencer, apparently asleep.


Read the full article in the slideshow at the bottom.

IT has always been good at finding off-beat stories. Here's one about a bowler who is blind.

While we tend to think of single parents as a recent phenomenon,  IT covered the topic in its second issue.

By the same token, the modern obsession with trying to lose weight isn't actually new, as evidenced by this weight loss ad.


The second issue also contained a great historical piece on Elizabeth Packard of Manteno, Illinois, who was forcibly committed to an asylum in 1860 by her husband. The article touches on the rights of those committed against their will.

Just about everyone in Springfield knows of the Dana-Thomas House, that beautiful Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home at Fourth and Lawrence. But how many people remember what it used to be called? This article describes the opening of the home to the public, referring to it as "Bannerstone House."


In the tradition of covering local music as culture, the current issue of Illinois Times features a local band called Looming. The second issue of IT covered the band Bodine Fripp, composed of three Springfield musicians hoping to make it big.


My favorite part about the article is the photo of the guy who apparently took his guitar to bed with him. We've all been there, fella. 

As promised, here's the angry letter about the ERA. Surprisingly, the letter alleges that the Republican party paid to promote the passage of the Constitutional amendment. It still hasn't been ratified, but that push is beginning again among some groups. History, repeat thyself.


Read the rest of the article and check out a few other selections in the slideshow below.

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