History... In Person

A World of Folklore

Keynotes & Workshops

Books & Downloads

Join Our Mailing List







Fox as herndon webHow To Have a Happy, Cold, Wet, Flood-Soaked Summer!
Yes, we did have a tornado touch down in a small town near us, but luckily no lives were lost and Bishop Hill was untouched. But a little rain shouldn’t dampen summer fun. I just spent a week on the Spirit of Peoria riverboat during a record flood, a truly exciting time to see the river! We changed the schedule hourly to avoid calamity, and the guest said it was a wonderful experience. My annual Birthday Poem was inspired by the adventure. We have another campfire storytelling July 17th and a lovely concert July 19th. And this summer we are hosting several Chautauqua, all geared towards being the spark on a cold, wet, moon-dark night. Will you join us as a light unto the darkness:
foxsantaA Good Year Gone and A Great Year Coming!
It has been a rich and rewarding first full year in Bishop Hill, Illinois, with a dozen things to smile about: Lucia Nights just wrapped up; we had a wonderful series of Dreaming Tree house concerts and storytelling around the bonfire: we hosted our second annual well-attended Chautauqua; created a few new websites for www.historicunitedstates.com; and most of the heavy lifting is done with remodeling the Twinflower Inn. This weekend we are hosting our annual Winter Solstice programs in Bishop Hill and at The Fox Pub in Peoria. And next year is already brimmingly full with another writers' retreat, my History...In Person project coming to fruition, a few more web sites under construction and several new Chautauqua in the works. Following are a few presents for my friends. Please share this newsletter and spread the good cheer!'


foxoctoberTo everything, turn, turn, turn,
There is a season turn, turn, turn, turn
And a time to every purpose under heaven
- Pete Seeger’s adaptation of the Ecclesiastes
I often break out into song when feeling in love with life. I was walking home through the enchanted dusk late last evening, absolutely in love, and this song kept running through my head. I do love the way the past few days have gone from 100 degrees heat index to frosty nights, summer fun to school days, a field full of flowers to a tinge of autumn color in the forest edges. This autumn is bountiful with new projects, A Harvest Moon, more Ghosts Stories at the Twinflower Inn, another Springdale Cemetery Tour, and an abundance of family stories! Will you join us for the fun?



Relishing the Heat of Summer

Tonight I am sitting in a tent in Central Mississippi in the midst of my annual summer library tour. There are dozens of frogs and locusts singing all around, bats flitting about, a three quarters moon providing light against the silhouettes of long-leaf pine trees and a million mosquitoes buzzing against the dome of a 'no-see-um proof' screen protecting me from a nightmare! I just finished swimming in Geiger Lake at sunset. I ate barbeque ribs for dinner at a rural drive up joint with picnic tables out front. I truly relish the heat of summer. I love the riverboat rides, night noises, and backyard concerts, campfire storytelling, berry picking, and birthday poems, Springfield's History Alive, working in the garden, and the end of summer Chautauqua. What do you love most about summer?
  • Native American Star Stories

  • The Dreaming Tree Concert Series

  • History Alive In Springfield, Illinois

  • End of Summer Chautauqua Series