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Thursday, March 10, 2011 06:24 am

The perils of naming public buildings in a fastidious age

The good people of Chatham have built themselves a second public elementary school, to give their young the skills they will need to someday leave Chatham. The usual sorts of names for the new school ...
Thursday, March 3, 2011 10:15 am

Springfield’s booming health care economy can’t keep living like this

Springfield has become to sick people what Decatur is to soybeans, a major regional processing center in which raw materials are processed by the latest in high-tech machinery into novel products such...
Thursday, Feb. 24, 2011 10:22 am

Lincoln’s farewell to Springfield as a Guinness gag

When I lived on the east side in the 1980s, I often walked past the building now called the Lincoln Depot on my way to and from downtown. Many’s the time I found myself having to wait while a fr...
Thursday, Feb. 17, 2011 07:14 pm

Why the Constitution is not our political holy book

At my age, “constitutional issues” usually involve medicine, not the law, if only because the other kind are so complex that thinking about them makes my head hurt. A boyhood reading of Th...
Thursday, Feb. 10, 2011 11:24 am

Some pitfalls in doing family history research

Thomas Schwartz has been the Illinois State Historian since 1993. Asked how he got into the racket in a 2008 interview, Mr. Schwartz recalled that he grew up surrounded by an extended family whos...
Thursday, Feb. 3, 2011 03:25 pm

Who pays for Springfield’s low-priced housing?

Each year for nearly 20 years now, the National Association of Home Builders and the Wells Fargo Bank have boiled down national real estate data into an easy-to-digest housing affordability index. Loc...
Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011 08:48 pm

Barnes &%u2008Noble is poorly. What does that mean for Springfield?

Back in March of 2009, Barnes & Noble signed a new five-year lease on its store in the strip mall at Wabash and Veterans where it has been doing business since it opened in 1993. The decision was ...
Thursday, Jan. 20, 2011 01:25 am

Libels and lessons learned from Tucson

I have little doubt about what we all ought to talking about after Tucson. The most pressing social issues revealed – again – by these shootings is the absence of a workable system to iden...
Thursday, Jan. 13, 2011 04:57 pm

Springfield’s vanished streetcar system

If you bend down and put your ear to a railroad track, you might be able to hear a faint clanging and banging. That’s the noise of far-off cities building new public transit systems that run on ...
Thursday, Jan. 6, 2011 08:13 pm

What do the suicides of Illinois public people tell us?

The motives people have for entering the public sphere often are murky. Their motives for leaving it prematurely are usually even more so. Tim Davlin is only the latest of several Illinois public men ...

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