Even close followers of Illinois state government might be hard pressed to name the first African American member of the General Assembly. But a new book traces the life of John W.E. Thomas.
David Joens, who is also the Director of the Illinois State Archives, is the author of “From Slave To State Legislator: John W.E. Thomas – Illinois’ First African American Lawmaker.”
Joens spoke with WUIS’ Sean Crawford. He says Thomas started out a slave in the south….
Joens will speak Wednesday afternoon from noon to 1:30 at the Public Affairs Center at UIS. Students, faculty, staff and others are invited. The brown bag presentation also features Ed Wojcicki, who recently co-authored a book on former State Senate President Phil Rock.