Bicentennial Celebration On Saturday

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Montgomery County will celebrate 200 years with an event beginning at 12 noon on Saturday, April 10, at the Historic Courthouse in Hillsboro.

The event had originally been scheduled for Feb. 13, the day after the 200th anniversary of the county’s founding, but was rescheduled due to bad weather.

The Saturday event will feature introductions by Patsy Bourdoumis and David Beal and a photo by Ken Meade of families with roots back to original settlers.

There will also be a welcome by Donna Yeske of the Bicentennial Committee, VAC Superintendent Dave Strowmatt will lead the Pledge of Allegiance, Montgomery County Board Chairman Evan Young will read a proclamation in honor of the bicentennial, Patty Whitworth of the Bicentennial Committee will introduce mayors and county board members, and the festivities will also include remarks by Sheriff Rick Robbins, Rep. Avery Bourne, and Rep. Rodney Davis before a benediction by the Rev. Stefan Munker.

Plans are still in the process for a day-long event set for Saturday, June 5, at the County Fairgrounds in Butler.  Municipalities in the county are invited to set up historical displays, and food, merchandise and craft vendors are invited to reserve booth space by May 22.  To reserve space for a food booth, call Donna Yeske at 217-556-3284 or Tim Fogle at 217-259-7609.  To reserve space for merchandise or craft booths, contact Patty Whitworth at 217-246-2806, Nancy Slepicka at 217-556-9449 or Jody Dunn at 217-254-3736.

In the fall of 1820, John Tillson Jr., Hiram Rountree, Israel Seward and Eleaser Townsend presented a petition to the still-infant Illinois state legislature, asking that a new county be detached from Bond County.  The request was approved by the legislature meeting in Vandalia, and on Feb. 12, 1821, Montgomery County, named after Revolutionary War hero Gen. Richard Montgomery, was established.

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