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Municipal planner to talk roads

Published: Tuesday, April 23, 2013 2:01 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, April 24, 2013 7:37 p.m. CDT

UNION –  In “Early Trails of McHenry County,” the last in the McHenry County Historical Society’s Sampler lecture series, Crystal Lake resident Ders Anderson will talk about a variety of early trails and roads, and about how Native Americans divined the most efficient ways of crossing wilderness.

The program begins at 3 p.m. Monday, at the county historical museum, 6422 Main St. in Union.

A municipal planner by trade for 20 years and an architect by training, Anderson became greenways director of Chicago-based Openlands in 1994.

He is responsible for the planning and implementation of projects related to the 4,300-mile greenway and 2,000-mile trail system adopted for northeastern Illinois.

Anderson, 63, talks about such trailblazers as Frenchmen Jacques Marquette and  René Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle and Canadian explorer Louis Jolliet.

And he continues to shed light on many of the important routes these men and others used – including the old Chicago Road that originally linked forts at Detroit and Chicago.

Today, Anderson said, just fragments remain along Routes 12 and 20 in Illinois, vestiges of a bygone day when utilitarian design and expediency took a back seat to interpreting the landscape.

Advance registration is appreciated, but walk-ins are welcome. The cost is $10.

For information, call 815-923-2267.

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