Swedish immigrants led by Eric Janson started the Bishop Hill Colony as a religious communal society in 1846. Because of its impact on immigration, Bishop Hill is a National Historic Landmark. According to the National Park Service, there are only 2,600 NHLs found in the United States today.
The Bishop Hill State Historic Site protects and preserves the Bishop Hill Colony NHL, which, according to the National Park Service, represents outstanding aspects of American history and culture.
The Bishop Hill State Historic Site consists of the Bishop Hill State Museum, Colony Church and several other buildings.
Due to budget impasses in Springfield, much needed maintenance and repairs have been postponed again and again on these buildings, especially the Colony Church. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources manages the state historic sites.
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For those of us who believe strongly in preserving the heritage of the Bishop Hill Colony, it is time to let the DNR in Springfield know that we care and request that additional funding be budgeted to the Bishop Hill State Historic Site for building repairs.
If we don’t speak up for the Bishop Hill State Historic Site, who will?
Administrator, Bishop Hill Heritage Association
Bishop Hill, Ill.