Founders Memorial Library Exhibits

December 2018


Main Exhibit: Prairie State - Celebrating Illinois' Statehood Bicentennial

This exhibit offers a view of how European-American settlers changed Illinois. Arriving first in small numbers along the Mississippi, Ohio and Illinois rivers, settlers floated down river in flat boats, or crossed from southern states. After the Erie Canal opened, the Great Lakes became a heavily used route. At the outset of the nineteenth century farming was only at a subsistence level. New machinery, such as John Deere's plow and Cyrus McCormick's Reaper made it much easier for farmers to break the prairie sod and manage larger areas. First the I&M Canal and then the railroad dramatically changed Illinois' role as a producer. The Illinois Central Railroad in particular encouraged migration and farming along its roads, seeking a greater benefit in expanded commerce.

Contact person: Mark Hamilton,, (815) 753-1978.

Regional History Center exhibit – Fourth floor

Reading Room cases: “Homecoming: 111 Years Strong”

The exhibit focuses on the history of homecoming at Northern and highlights items from the University Archives, including school pennants, buttons, yearbooks, photographs, football programs, sports memorabilia, and more.

Rare Books and Special Collections exhibit - Fourth floor

“What Else Happened in 1968?”

This exhibit consists of items covering the issues and unrest in 1968. What else happened in 1968? A plethora of books are displayed that were published, some for the first time, and others are reprints. There is also a case of authors that we lost that year. All of the items displayed are from collections in the Rare Books and Special Collections department.

Contact person: Angie Schroeder,, (815) 753-8091.

Southeast Asia Collection exhibit - Fourth floor

“Discover Myanmar”

In conjunction with the symposium on Burmese reverse glass painting, the visit of the Ambassador of Myanmar to the US, Aung Lynn, and as part of International Education Week, the Southeast Asia collection has put together an exhibit about Myanmar.  It features books, and artifacts that focus on the history, politics, culture and art of Myanmar.  Included in this are some old and rare books from the rare books annex.  The exhibit also highlights NIU’s involvement with Myanmar through the Center for Burma Studies as well as workshops in two university libraries in Myanmar taught by Hao Phan.

Contact person: Joanna Kulma,, (815) 753-1819.

Contact Us

Dean Fred Barnhart

Phone: (815) 753-1094

Founders Memorial Library
Northern Illinois University
217 Normal Rd
DeKalb, IL 60115-2828

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