At Midewin, we often quote a New York writer named Eliza. In 1840, she wrote about her first glimpses of the Illinois prairie. She published her diary of a six-week, 4,000-mile journey from New York through the frontier of Illinois and to the Mississippi River. Our Heritage Program Manager, Joe Wheeler & volunteers from Midewin decided to find out exactly where she traveled in northern Illinois. Could her steps be retraced? She left names, dates, times of day and many other clues in her writing to do just that. They followed the clues and this tour is the result. We limited our tour to areas surrounding Chicago and Midewin. Take this tour virtually but the roads Eliza traveled are almost all still in existence. Things will look different than the wild frontier she encountered. Few of the wild places Eliza saw are still in existence. She and her husband traveled this portion of their trip by stagecoach. They passed a few miles north of Midewin in 1840. She would have look south to the horizon onto the undulating prairie of which Midewin belonged. Whether taking Eliza’s journey virtually or in person, make sure to come to Midewin. Walk on a piece of restored prairie. Feel what Eliza did as you walk a trail through the prairie. Glimpse the immense expanse of what was once never-ending land, plant life, and animals. Feel the heat of the sun, the wind against your skin, and the scent of the flowers in the air. Listen to music of the grass as the wind blows and singing insects in the heat of the day. Look out upon the seemingly endless horizon. Eliza would have wanted you to come and experience prairie for yourself.