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2     WHEREAS, The contribution of the people from Wales to the
3 State of Illinois is an important part of our State's history;
4 and
5     WHEREAS, The Welsh-American contribution to the State of
6 Illinois is as old as the State itself; from Illinois' early
7 beginnings to the modern day, Welshmen have made significant
8 contributions and have turned up in the most unlikely
9 scenarios, such as becoming the first President of the town of
10 Chicago (Thomas Jefferson Vance Owen), designing churches and
11 homes (such as our own Frank Lloyd Wright), and founding
12 charities and homeless shelters (Pastor Elam Davies) to help
13 Illinois' poorest neighborhoods; and
14     WHEREAS, In the early days of Illinois the Welsh and
15 descendants of Welsh people, though their numbers were not
16 great, had an influential role in shaping the State; some of
17 the State's most prominent early politicians were of Welsh
18 heritage, and include Ninian Edwards, Jesse B. Thomas, Thomas
19 Jefferson Vance Owen, David Davis, Albert J. Hopkins, J.
20 Hamilton Lewis, Thomas Langrell Harris, Thomas L. Owens, Edward
21 J. Hughes, John Thomas, Louis 0. Williams, John Broderick,
22 Buckner S. Morris, Alexander Lloyd, and John P. Hopkins; and



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1     WHEREAS, Many Illinois towns, cities, and counties are
2 named either by or for Welsh people, including Berwyn, Cambria,
3 Edwardsville, Evanston, Evansville, Harrisburg, Harristown,
4 Henry, Hopkins Park, Jonesboro, Milford, Monmouth, Morris,
5 Mount Morris, Norris City, Rogers Park, St. David, Swansea,
6 Taylor Springs, Taylorville, Thomasboro, Williamsville,
7 Edwards County, Jo Daviess County, and Morgan County; and
8     WHEREAS, At the Chicago Columbian Exposition of 1893,
9 Chicago was the site of the first Eisteddfod (a Welsh choral
10 competition with a history spanning many centuries) held
11 outside of Wales; the Rhondda Glee Society Choir won first
12 prize in the choral singing competition at the Eisteddfod, in a
13 contest against choirs from all over the world, including the
14 world famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir; and
15     WHEREAS, Chicago's most famous architect, Frank Lloyd
16 Wright, was born to Welsh immigrant parents from Cardiganshire,
17 mid-Wales; he was born in 1867 and grew up in a Welsh speaking
18 community in Wisconsin near Spring Green; one quarter of all
19 buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright are in Illinois,
20 including The Frank Lloyd Wright Home & Studio in Oak Park,
21 parts of the Rookery building, the Dana Thomas House in
22 Springfield, the E-Z Polish Factory, and the Abraham Lincoln
23 Center, which was designed for the Welsh reverend Jenkin Lloyd
24 Jones; and



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1     WHEREAS, Wales is famous for its actors and musicians such
2 as Anthony Hopkins, Catherine Zeta Jones, Tom Jones, Christian
3 Bale, and Ioan Gruffudd to name but a few; Illinoisans of Welsh
4 descent have also made their presence known in entertainment
5 and public life, including comedian and actor Robin Williams,
6 Chicago news reporter and host of 190 North, Janet Davies,
7 director and producer John Hughes, Six Feet Under star Richard
8 Jenkins, and actress Denise Richards, are all of Welsh
9 heritage; and
10     WHEREAS, St. David's Day has traditionally been celebrated
11 in the Welsh communities by reading poetry, singing, and eating
12 Welsh food; therefore, be it
15 thank all of the persons of Welsh descent for their significant
16 contributions to the State of Illinois; that we express
17 appreciation for those persons who have kept alive Welsh
18 culture and traditions; and we join with all the citizens of
19 the State of Illinois who revere their Welsh heritage by
20 proclaiming St. David's Day on March 1, 2007, and each year
21 thereafter in the State of Illinois; and be it further
22     RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be



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1 presented to Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.