Union County Archival-Historical Investigations
Principal investigator Mark Wagner prepared this report, an NPS Challenge Cost Share Project, between October 2002 and September 2003. The report focuses on Union County, which is the westernmost of the three Illinois counties that were located along the northern (main) Trail of Tears route — traversed by thousands of Cherokee between 1837 and 1839. Wagner's research had three objectives: (1) to examine land, tax, and other records to determine if any of nine known archeological sites could have been occupied ruing the Trail of Tears period, (2) to determine the locations, owners, operators, and types of ferries that the various Cherokee detachments may have used, and (3) to review various contemporary journals to see if any Union County landowners may have been identified.
Mark J. Wagner, Archival and Historical Investigation for the Cherokee Trail of Tears in Union County, Illinois, Center for Archaeological Investigations, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Technical Report 03-2, October 2003 (13.3 MB pdf)