Early Illinois Cricket Game
A cricket match seems to have been the first athletic contest held within the state of Illinois. A record of this event has been found in Wood's English Prairie, a part of "Early Western Travels" edited by Thwaites: "On the second of October (1820) there was a game of cricket played at Wanborough by the young men of the settlement; this they called keeping Catherine Hill fair, many of the players being from the neighborhood of Godalming and Guilford, (England.)"

Wanborough was an early settlement, which is thought to have been not far from Shawneetown, and Catherine Hill fair is well known to all persons acquainted with the vicinity of Guilford, Surrey.
Pioneer Illinois Sheep Breeder
One of the very early farmers of Illinois, George Flower, of Edwards County, became widely known as a successful grower of sheep. It is related that he "brought with him from England for breeding purposes "six of the finest animals of the wool growing species ever imported into this country."

In 1841, he passed on valuable information to other sheep men by means of a pamphlet.

Since wolves were a great scourge to shepherds in those early days, Flower emphasized the necessity of constant vigillance against their attacks and advocated the building of wolf-proof fences. "They are very sly animals," he wrote, "and I have known one, protected by a hazel bush, to enter a flock while the keeper was with it, and kill quite a number of sheep before he could be got out. The flock frequently does not seem to apprehend the wolf, or flee from him; and he will do his work without causing any commotion among them."

Extracted 20 Oct 2019 by Norma Hass from Stories from Illinois History, compiled by the Workers of the Writers' Program of the Work Projects Administration in the State of Illinois, published in 1940, pages 53 and 63.

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