Starting in August 2016, the Department of Historical Studies launched “Madison Historical: The Online Encyclopedia and Digital Archive of Madison County” to inform the community about the history and culture of Madison County, Illinois, provide an authoritative and accessible resource for students, genealogists, scholars, and other persons interested in Madison County, Illinois, and to create a framework for ongoing documentation of Madison County history by providing a user-friendly digital collection of historically significant documents and oral histories. The site has already published encyclopedia entries, oral histories, and an exciting collection of artifacts.

Steven Hansen, Jeff Manuel, and Jason Stacy of the Department of Historical Studies edit Madison Historical. In 2016-2107, Nichol Allen, Jessica Mills, Jim Parrill, and Lesley Thompson-Sasso serve as research assistants on the project. Ben Ostermeier works as the (all-important) technology developer.

Madison History invites members of the community to:

Write an encyclopedia article: If you are an expert on some aspect of local history, please share your passion with readers by writing an encyclopedia article. We welcome articles on all aspects of Madison County history, including significant people, buildings, or events. Articles are typically 500-1500 words and are vetted by our editorial board prior to publication online. To submit an article or ask about a topic, please email

Share digital copies of historical materials like old photographs or letters: We are building a digital archive of the county’s historical photographs and documents. We invite you to share digital copies of your old photographs and documents via our digital archive. We scan the materials and upload them to our web site. You keep the originals and get a digital copy for free! To share materials or discuss what you have, please email

Share memories with an oral history interview: Madison Historical shares personal histories of the county through oral history interviews. If you know someone who would be a good candidate for an interview, please let us know. Better yet, if you conduct the interview yourself we can preserve and share it in our digital archive. To discuss oral history interviews, please email us at

Written by Dr. Jason Stacy


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