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Generals gather at the Army of the Potomac Headquarters in Virginia. 
Gettysburg is the most famous battle in American history; and the largest ever fought in the western hemisphere. The small town in south-central Pennsylvania is remembered for the three-day clash of armies in July 1863, and for the November remarks of Abraham Lincoln, quite possibly the greatest Presidential speech ever delivered.

But while its aftermath, in which Illinois’ favorite son spoke of those who gave “the last full measure of devotion,” is well-known, the battle’s origin is not such common knowledge. It began with a group of six Illinois cavalrymen standing in front of an advancing army and setting in motion the events which would turn the tide of the Civil War and save our nation.
ETHICS REFORM
Leader Durkin, House Republicans Introduce Sweeping Ethics Reform Package in Response to Federal Investigations. Illinois House Republican Leader Jim Durkin along with members of the House Republican caucus have announced a sweeping ethics reform package to address unacceptable practices brought forth through the ongoing federal investigations.

“These ethics reform bills are common sense, and a direct response to the wrongdoings we have learned from the current federal investigations,” Durkin said. “I am calling on the legislative leaders and the Governor to support these initiatives and begin moving them forward next week so they can become law.”
In the early years of the 20th century, reform movements swept the nation. These movements brought about many of the laws governing safety and working conditions that we take for granted today. Basic workplace safety laws, the Pure Food and Drug Act, prohibitions on child labor and the beginning of the end of the sweatshops; these all came about due to the efforts of reformers during that era.

But sadly, many of these reforms didn’t happen just because of the hard work of those seeking to create a better life for Americans. They were helped along by some of the worst disasters in American history. One of the most notorious is the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York in which more than a hundred workers were killed when fire broke out in a locked sweatshop. Other early-20th century disasters as varied as the Iroquois Theater fire, the San Francisco earthquake of 1906 and the sinking of the Titanic led to dramatic reforms of safety laws throughout the nation and the world. One such disaster which changed Illinois and federal law was the 1909 fire in a coal mine near the small town of Cherry.
ETHICS/CORRUPTION
Bipartisan Group of Legislators Call for Ethics Reform. Amidst ongoing public corruption investigations entangling multiple layers of Illinois government, Assistant House Minority Leader Grant Wehrli and a group of lawmakers is renewing the call for comprehensive ethics reform. At a Capitol press conference last Monday, the lawmakers said the General Assembly must take swift action to not only enhance Illinois’ current public ethics laws, but also called for the creation of a new task force.
More than 160 years later, the prophetic words of the most famous speech Abraham Lincoln delivered in Illinois remain well known.

“A house divided against itself cannot stand,” Lincoln told his audience on June 16, 1858. “I believe this government cannot endure, permanently, half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved – I do not expect the house to fall – but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other.”
GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Fall veto session set to begin in Springfield. The lawmakers of the Illinois House will gather on Monday, October 28, to consider new business and take action on the vetoes signed by the Governor. The members of the Illinois General Assembly are mandated by the Constitution to meet for two three-day annual veto sessions every year. The first veto session will be in the final week of October, and the second week of veto session will be in the second full week of November.
When Major League Baseball held its first World Series in 1903, the league was made up of 16 teams all concentrated in the northeastern quarter of the nation. Five cities were home to multiple teams, and over the years some of the greatest World Series moments came from cross-town series: the hapless St. Louis Browns’ one taste of success, winning the American League pennant in 1944 (before being swept by the Cardinals in the Series), the Brooklyn Dodgers finally breaking through and winning a title in 1955, Don Larsen’s perfect game for the Yankees the following year.

But MLB’s very first crosstown series happened right here in Illinois in 1906, when the White Sox bested the Cubs in six games.