Illinois Historical Society President Russell Lewis poses with Historical Society of Forest Park Executive Director Diane Hansen Grah and Vice President Augie Aleksy in Springfield April 26. (Courtesy Augie Aleksy)

Des Plaines River Anthology, Forest Park’s own narrative history of the inhabitants of its cemeteries, won top honors in Springfield April 26 from the Illinois State Historical Society. The book won the Award of Superior Achievement in the publications category. The award is meant to honor “single works that compile, preserve, and/or interpret state or local history, thereby increasing community awareness,” the society’s website says.  

The book, conceived in 2007 and published in October, 2013 was written by a collaboration of Illinois authors under the guidance of Centuries and Sleuths bookstore owner Augie Aleksy. It was published by local Allium Press as a fundraiser for the Historical Society of Forest Park.  

To debut, the historical society presented a live adaptation of the book at the Park District building Oct. 26 with 13 local actors performing multiple parts directed by Forest Park director Amy Binns-Calvey. 

Aleksy said he believes the book will become a “collector’s item.” He said the book’s first run is almost sold out.

“We waited to reprint the cover so we could add the winner emblem to the cover art,” Aleksy said. 

Jean Lotus loves community journalism. She covers news, features, two school boards, village council, crime, park district and writes obits for Forest Park Review. She also covers the police beat for...

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