(This story was written by reporter Geoff Norfleet)
This year marks the beginning of the War of 1812, and Western Illinois Museum curator Sue Scott says although there were no major battles in what was then known as the Illinois Territory, the area does have its connections to the War.
For example, Western Illinois was known as the Military Tract. Millions of acres of land had been set aside to be given to the veterans of the War of 1812. Each vet was eligible to receive 160 acres.
The Hancock County Economic Development Committee has formed three task forces composed of 25 volunteers each.
They are looking for ways to encourage future economic development in the county.
An initial meeting of selected three priorities; job creation, vocational training and entrepreneurship and encouraging residents to shop at local businesses. Each task force will hold an initial meeting in the next few weeks. They will then meet on a quarterly basis.