FREEPORT, ILLINOIS — The Stephenson County Visitor Center is proud to bring the Illinois Freedom Project (ILF) exhibit to Stephenson County residents and visitors to illuminate historical stories of slavery and freedom.
Join us for this exhibit’s opening presentation on January 16 at 6 pm at the Stephenson County Visitor Center, located at 4596 US Highway 20 East, Freeport. Exhibit Curator Tim Townsend of the National Park Service and Freeport’s own Abraham Lincoln, George Buss will explain the history behind creating the exhibit, its significance in Illinois history and goals for impacting generations to come. The exhibit will remain open at the Visitor Center until March 1.
The Illinois Freedom Project uses “inspiring stories of the past to inform and empower students to create a better future.” This National Parks Service display teaches the history of slavery by exploring the interconnected narratives that came to define it. With site visits, public discussion, and multimedia, ILF organizers and youth participants explore how the people, places, and events of Illinois from the 18th century through the early 20th came together to write the history of slavery, injustice, adversity, and ultimately freedom.
Area schools from Stephenson, Jo Daviess and Carroll counties have been invited to participate in the exhibit and utilize Illinois Freedom Project curriculum in their classrooms free of charge. For more information on acquiring the curriculum guide, please contact Nicole Haas at 815-801-3676.
“We are honored to have this exhibit in our area for all ages and backgrounds. The Illinois Freedom Project is a perfect guide to the commemoration and celebration of Black History Month and President Lincoln’s birthday during its time at the visitor center. Please make time to stop and visit during its six-week stay,” said Greater Freeport Partnership Brand Director Nicole Haas.
The Illinois Freedom Project exhibit and materials contain insights into the struggles for freedom in Illinois through stories of the past as well as insights from young people today. Here, you will ﬁnd stories about communities and neighborhoods; about laws and justice; about families and leadership; and, about taking a stand.
The Stephenson County Visitor Center promotes businesses and attractions in the area by providing assistance and resources to travelers and visitors. The Greater Freeport Partnership manages the visitor center to provide these and other services to patrons.