First Black Law (1819) This piece of discriminatory legislation is titled "An Act Respecting Negroes, Mulattoes, Servants and Slaves." It severely limits the rights of African-Americans and servants in Illinois.
Petition for Black Male Suffrage (1822-1823) Despite the discrimination they faced, a small number of free African-Americans settled in Illinois after statehood. In this petition, several African-Americans petition the legislature for the right to vote.
Coles v. County of Madison, 1 Ill. 154 (1826) One month before future governor Edward Coles freed his slaves in Illinois, the legislature had enacted a law requiring that free African-Americans had to file a $1,000 bond with the county of residence before settling in Illinois. Coles was sued for not posting the bond.
Speech of Kennekuk (1831) This document is a hand-written transcription, and possibly a translation, of remarks Kickapoo leader Kennekuk gave in response to a July 23, 1831 talk of General William Clark, who was the regional Superintendent of Indian Affairs.
Lincoln's House Journal Entry on Slavery (1837) Following the passage of the pro-slavery resolution, Representatives Abraham Lincoln and Dan Stone, both from Sangamon County, introduced a protest to it. In the protest, they argued that the institution of slavery was founded in "injustice and bad policy."
Charter for the City of Nauvoo (1840) Members of the Church of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) begin to settle in Nauvoo in western Illinois in the late 1830s. The General Assembly approved "An Act to Incorporate the City of Nauvoo" on December 16, 1840.
Jarrot v. Jarrot, 7 Ill. 1 (1845) Joseph Jarrot was a slave in Illinois in the 1840s. Jarrot sued his owner for his freedom, arguing the slavery was illegal in Illinois.