The Bonds of War: Lake County Soldiers in the American Civil War
Thursday, March 24 at 7pm on Zoom
When curator Diana L. Dretske discovered that the five long-gone Union soldiers in a treasured photograph in the Bess Bower Dunn Museum were not fully identified, it compelled her into a project of recovery and reinterpretation. Through her intensive research, The Bonds of War was created. Dretske's new book centers on immigrants from the British Isles who wished to be citizens of a country at war with itself. Far removed from their native homelands, they found new promise in rural Illinois. These newcomers along the quiet Stateline Road in Lake County, with some even residing in today's Lake Forest-Lake Bluff regions, decided to join the fighting at its most dangerous hour, thus shifting the bonds of war into the bonds of their new national identity.
Diana L. Dretske, curator and Lake County historian at the Bess Bower Dunn Museum of Lake County, has explored the history of northeastern Illinois through her research, presentations, and blog for over thirty years. In 2012, the Illinois State Historical Society recognized her with a lifetime achievement award for outstanding contributions in promoting, preserving, and commemorating Illinois history.