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School Fund Commissioners - RG 366 | Illinois State Archives

Name: School Fund Commissioners - RG 366

Historical Note: In 1818 the federal government provided a system to help finance public education in Illinois. Proceeds from the sale of section sixteen of each geographical township of the public domain in the state was set aside to support education. Also designated for education were three percent of the proceeds from sales of federal lands within the state after January 1, 1819. And to support seminaries of learning were the proceeds from the sale of two whole geographical townships (U.S. Stat. at Large, III, p. 428). To these federal grants the state added two percent of annual state revenues to the school fund. The School Fund Commissioners, composed of the Governor, Auditor of Public Accounts, and the Secretary of State, were formed in 1825 to administer the school and seminary funds. The commissioners received revenues and distributed them among counties in proportion to the number of inhabitants under age twenty-one (L. 1825, p. 125). In 1829 the Attorney General also was appointed to the School Fund Commissioners (L. 1829, p. 161). Twenty-five percent of the interest on the school fund was allocated to the Illinois Asylum for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb in 1839 (L. 1839, p. 164). The proceeds of seminary land sales was allocated to State Normal and Southern Illinois Normal Universities (L. 1857, p. 298; L. 1869, p. 8).

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