Haunted Alton & The Corpse Reviver (No. 2)

Writing a slightly popular blog has its benefits. Maybe I shouldn’t boast that Distilled History is popular, but my Rolodex has certainly bulked up in the past several months. I’ve met new friends involved in the St. Louis history scene, and others who are into drinking. Many are into history and drinking, and that means life…

Elijah Parish Lovejoy, Part II

(Part I of the Elijah P. Lovejoy story can be found here) Before I kick into the second half of Lovejoy’s story, I thought it’d be interesting to explain how this post came to be. A few weeks ago, a small package arrived on my porch. Inside, I found a copy of Edward Beecher’s book…

Elijah Parish Lovejoy, Part I

One of my favorite television programs is American Experience on PBS. Known for their well-produced and in-depth historical documentaries, American Experience has been simply killing it lately. “Death and the Civil War“ aired back in November, a film based on the fantastic book This Republic of Suffering by Drew Gilpin Faust. Recently, they aired another…

The Duel on Sunflower Island

This is a view of the city of Alton, Illinois from “Smallpox Island”. No longer an actual island, it’s now a recreation area on the Missouri side of the Mississippi River. It’s located about nine miles north of the city of St. Louis. Before the Civil War, it was called “Sunflower Island”. The name changed…

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