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National Guard Celebrates 290th Birthday
Today is the 290th birthday of the Illinois National Guard, but get this: they've never celebrated the date until today.
That's because the guard's command historian only recently made the discovery. She found the proof of the birthdate in the diary of a French territorial captain who called together a military right in our area to defend themselves. The entry was dated May 9, 1723.
This isn't the only proof used to validate this milestone.
"I did utilize about eight different historians from around the state," command historian Adriana Schroeder said. "Lots of primary source documents that are spread around from Illinois to New Orleans to Quebec to, believe it or not, the Paris Archives in France."
Today, there are 13,000 Illinois National Guard soldiers and airmen serving in our state. Thirty-four have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.