Jump to: Remember, Imagine



by Alex Ranieri

There is something that all people, as they pass through childhood into youth and eventual maturity, strive to repress. We all have individual memories and humiliations we would rather forget, but this particular blank stretches across the collective consciousness. Most of us are successful in our attempts to remember selectively, and so we look back on our childhood selves with a mixture of nostalgia and amusement. Young children are to us, with rare exception, naive, gentle creatures as yet untarnished by our concept of sin. They are incapable of inappropriate feelings or violent tendencies, and those of them that do behave shockingly are abnormal. The average child, we believe, wants nothing more than to eat, play, and sleep.


Helping Someone

by Alex Ranieri

It was March; the iron-cold winter was just beginning its long, lingering thaw. I woke up one morning and felt the dizzy freedom to do nothing and everything-- and decided to take a sketchbook down to the Art Institute. Even though the contemporary galleries of River North are exciting and heady with the art world’s constant tectonic shifts, there’s no better way to study than to copy the Old Masters.



When I say go, you run like Hell!

by Ariel Walls

“When I say go, you run like Hell! Always keep the wind behind you and your feet above the ground.”

My sister dramatically cautionary whispers to me. Her skin, always remained thicke {thick}. She had no fears. No fears when mom and dad sent us to collect wood and we came in contact with a staring wolf, never no fear. But today I notice a glamolse {glimpse?} of fear in those amazingly gorgeous brown eyes of hers. The fear of losing all our years and memories of life together. She loved me and I loved her more than the nature around us.


I am a soldier in the midst of war

by Magaly Gallegos

I am a soldier in the midst of war against the Natives. I have my supplies with me plus my gun and sharp knife. All my training for the war has helped me survive this long. I kill a dozen or so of the enemy. As I walk slowly backwards descending towards all the trees and bushes. I cower behind all the bushy nature and check my surrounding{s}. Everyone seems too distracted to notice me as I lower my weapon. I take off my jacket to be less obvious and be quicker and lighter with my stance. Next thing you know I hear a foreign chant from behind me and then I’m on the ground looking at the grass. 


Dear Journal

by Anesia Bolling

Dear Journal,

Since I was six I helped my mother at wartime with medical runs. We would get tons of supply {supplies}, run out in the line of fire and save dying men. Now that I am sixteen, I have my nursing license like my Momma, but I can only remember how I learned {earned} my license…..



by Atha Panov

August 15-23, 1812

Dear Papou,

Thank you for teaching me early on about being adventurous and uninhibited. As you know in recent years, since my husband Michael’s death, I have found solace in Fort Dearborn, Chicago. I sometimes felt confined, or that life had become mundane in the fort. These feelings were offset by my awareness that I was safe surrounded by kind people. 



by Frank Nitkiewicz


I see your desire to be a soldier. A hero in battle, defeating enemies in death. A common desire among boys your age. But you have not yet experienced the other side of it. The reality. I am familiar with the passion as I too had the same desires. Until the day came that changed me for good.


Dearest Neighbor

by Felipa Salgado

Dearest Neighbor,

You, who will receive this, know that I am held here against my will. The restrictions here are unbearable; it takes the force of God to make my survival possible. The decided destiny of all those at Fort Dearborn is death unless we escape. I am writing this letter to you to appeal to your awareness of others who have been held there at Fort Dearborn, and who have gained freedom through death. These unmarked graves have received a forgotten existence.



by Mark Passero

Dear Franciscan Brother Father Joseph,

I was tending the chapel, when I heard gunfire and savaging screams. I looked out of my window to see the heathens climbing the walls, shooting arrows and waving their hatchets, each one landing a deadly blow. 


Escape from Fort Dearborn

by Will Ripes

My name is John Smith and I decided to settle out at Fort Dearborn because it seemed like a place with a lot of potential and land. I came to Fort Dearborn to make a living.

After surviving the crazy attack I met these Indians in the forest that I couldn’t communicate with. They weren’t aggressive though, overall nice and actually let me to {??} and gave me some of their food.


Escape from Fort Dearborn

by Tali Gleiser

The morning we left Fort Dearborn marked the beginning of the end of my life. The twelve short years I spent on this planet had never been easy, as the daughter of a high-ranking army officer we were constantly being moved from place to place and I often felt like more of a gypsy than a descendent of the first American settlers. That morning I watched as my mother scrambled around our home, frantically grabbing whatever we could carry on our backs. My two year old brother began to fuss and cry, because he could sense the tension in the air, he was far too young to comprehend what was going on. Before we left, my mother put her hands on my shoulders and said, “Eleanor, I want you to promise me that no matter what happens, you will not give up until you and Williams are at your father’s base in Indiana. You will be safe there.”


Excerpts from the Autobiography of William Henry Thorne, concerning the Events at Fort Dearborn.

Alex Ranieri

I have often been urged by my friends and family to record some instances of my life, which has been adventurous enough to make out of it many wonderful stories for the entertainment of my children and grandchildren. Although I have often recounted these stories, (at too much length, according to some of my acquaintance,) I had never considered putting them to paper. However, I have been prodded and cajoled and downright threatened, so I have finally decided to concede.