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Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 12:20 am

A look back at 35 years of bungling at the Y block

 Ever know a kid who never quite grew up because her parents wouldn’t let her? The Y block in downtown Springfield is a lot like that. I described the partial clearing of that parcel in 1978. (...
Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016 12:20 am

Mid-Illinois in the mid-1800s comes alive again

 Hepzibah was a young woman of a sort we’ve all known – smart, full of gumption and eager for a little bit more from life than life was prepared to give her. “It does seem to me that any on...
Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016 12:24 am

Trump’s not the only one wanting to build walls

 All that banging and buzzing you might have heard coming from the Springfield city council chambers in September was the council and mayor building a wall along the city’s border with Sangamon...
Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016 12:21 am

I become an historian

  Next summer, if things go well, I will become an historian, to the extent that the published author of a book-length history of mid-Illinois can be called an historian. In truth, I am untr...
Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016 12:21 am
 If its citizens struggle to see anything new in a landscape with which they have become too familiar, what is the poor landscape photographer to do? In Larry Kanfer’s case, he does nothing muc...
Thursday, Oct. 6, 2016 12:19 am

Wronging a precious right

 “You cheated!” is the lament of sore losers everywhere. Donald Trump warns – ominously, ludicrously – that the November election will be rigged too, presumably because the Democrats will...
Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016 12:20 am

Donald Trump’s run for the White House in 1992

 Donald Trump has run for the presidency before. He ran in 1968 disguised as George Wallace and again in 1996 as Patrick Buchanan. He also ran in 1992, as my excerpted column from Oct. 29 of that...
Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016 12:21 am

Is the city smart enough to pull off the Y block deal?

 How embarrassing. The City of Springfield finds itself in the same bind as the young swain who, wooing a sophisticated lovely, invites her to a posh dinner only to realize at the end of the meal...
Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016 12:30 am

An aging high schooler looks back

 The “I go to my reunion” essay is a staple of the genre. By now there is nothing new that can be said, but readers read them anyway, fearful that other people’s reunions were better than t...
Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016 12:20 am

Turning the state fair into an expo of real rural life

 When the Illinois State Fair was first staged in 1853, country people went there to see other country people. Later, city people went to see country people. These days  –  well, I’...

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