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{{About|the U.S. state of Illinois}}{{use American English|date=September 2019}}{{short description|American State}}{{Use mdy dates|date=February 2017}}

| Languages = English (80.8%) Spanish (14.9%)Other (5.1%)List of U.S. state residents names>Illinoisan| LargestCity = ChicagoSpringfield, Illinois>Springfield| LargestMetro = Chicago metropolitan area| area_rank = 25th| area_total_sq_mi = 57,914| area_total_km2 = 149,997| width_mi = 210| width_km = 338| length_mi = 390| length_km = 628| area_water_percent = 3.99| Latitude = 36° 58′ N to 42° 30′ N| Longitude = 87° 30′ W to 91° 31′ W| population_rank = 6th| 2010Pop = 12,741,080 (2018)TITLE=MEDIAN ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME, December 9, 2016, | 2000DensityUS = 232| 2000Density = 89.4| population_density_rank = 12th| IncomeRank = 17thCharles MoundNJ0855ACCESSDATE=OCTOBER 20, 2011, HTTP://EGSC.USGS.GOV/ISB/PUBS/BOOKLETS/ELVADIST/ELVADIST.HTML >TITLE=ELEVATIONS AND DISTANCES IN THE UNITED STATES UNITED STATES GEOLOGICAL SURVEY >YEAR=2001 URL-STATUS=DEAD ARCHIVEDATE=NOVEMBER 2, 2011, Elevation adjusted to North American Vertical Datum of 1988.| elevation_max_ft = 1235| elevation_max_m = 376.4| elevation_ft = 600| elevation_m = 180| elevation_min_point = Confluence of Mississippi River and Ohio River| elevation_min_m = 85| elevation_min_ft = 280| Former = Illinois Territory| AdmittanceDate = December 3, 1818| AdmittanceOrder = 21stJ. B. Pritzker (D)}}Juliana Stratton (D)}}| Legislature = Illinois General AssemblyIllinois Senate>SenateIllinois House of Representatives>House of RepresentativesDick Durbin (D)}}{{nowrap|Tammy Duckworth (D)}}| Representative = 13 Democrats 5 RepublicansCentral Time Zone (North America)>Central| utc_offset1 = -06:00Central Daylight Time>CDT| utc_offset1_DST = -05:00| iso_code = US-IL| postal_code = IL| TradAbbreviation = Ill.| website =weblink | BorderingStates = Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, Wisconsin| area_land_sq_mi = 55,593| area_land_km2 = 143,969| area_water_sq_mi = 2,320| area_water_km2 = 5,981}}

Illinois ({{IPAc-en|audio=en-us-Illinois.ogg|ˌ|ɪ|l|ə|ˈ|n|ɔɪ}} {{respell|IL|ə|NOY|'}}) is a state in the Midwestern and Great Lakes regions of the United States. It has the fifth largest gross domestic product (GDP),the sixth largest population, and the 25th largest land area of all U.S. states. Illinois has been noted as a microcosm of the entire United States.NEWS, Stephen, Ohlemacher, Analysis ranks Illinois most average state,weblink Associated Press, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, Illinois, May 17, 2007, April 10, 2009, With Chicago in northeastern Illinois, small industrial cities and immense agricultural productivity in the north and center of the state, and natural resources such as coal, timber, and petroleum in the south, Illinois has a diverse economic base, and is a major transportation hub. Chicagoland, Chicago's metropolitan area, encompasses over 65% of the state's population. The Port of Chicago connects the state to international ports via two main routes: from the Great Lakes, via the Saint Lawrence Seaway, to the Atlantic Ocean and from the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River, via the Illinois Waterway to the Illinois River. The Mississippi River, the Ohio River, and the Wabash River form parts of the boundaries of Illinois. For decades, Chicago's O'Hare International Airport has been ranked as one of the world's busiest airports. Illinois has long had a reputation as a bellwether both in social and cultural terms and, through the 1980s, in politics.The capital of Illinois is Springfield, which is located in the central part of the state. Although today's Illinois's largest population center is in its northeast, the state's European population grew first in the west as the French settled lands near the Mississippi River, when the region was known as Illinois Country and was part of New France. Following the American Revolutionary War, American settlers began arriving from Kentucky in the 1780s via the Ohio River, and the population grew from south to north. In 1818, Illinois achieved statehood. Following increased commercial activity in the Great Lakes after the construction of the Erie Canal, Chicago was founded in the 1830s on the banks of the Chicago River at one of the few natural harbors on the southern section of Lake Michigan.WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, May 16, 2008, Page Not Found - Chicago Public Library, May 16, 2008, John Deere's invention of the self-scouring steel plow turned Illinois's rich prairie into some of the world's most productive and valuable farmland, attracting immigrant farmers from Germany and Sweden. The Illinois and Michigan Canal (1848) made transportation between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River valley faster and cheaper, and new railroads carried immigrants to new homes in the country's west and shipped commodity crops to the nation's east. The state became a transportation hub for the nation.WEB,weblink The Historical Development of Transportation in Illinois, Ryburn-LaMonte, Terri, 1999, Illinois Periodicals Online, By 1900, the growth of industrial jobs in the northern cities and coal mining in the central and southern areas attracted immigrants from Eastern and Southern Europe. Illinois was an important manufacturing center during both world wars. The Great Migration from the South established a large community of African Americans in the state, including Chicago, who founded the city's famous jazz and blues cultures.WEB,weblink Jazz, Encyclopedia of Chicago, May 19, 2012, WEB,weblink Blues, Encyclopedia of Chicago, May 19, 2012, Chicago, the center of the Chicago Metropolitan Area, is now recognized as a global alpha-level city.Three U.S. presidents have been elected while living in Illinois: Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and Barack Obama. Additionally, Ronald Reagan, whose political career was based in California, was born and raised in the state. Today, Illinois honors Lincoln with its official state slogan Land of Lincoln, which has been displayed on its license plates since 1954.WEB,weblink The History of Illinois License Plates,, February 15, 2012, WEB,weblink Slogan,, February 7, 2011, The state is the site of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield and the future home of the Barack Obama Presidential Center in Chicago.{{TOC limit|limit=3}}


{{see also|Illinois Confederation|List of counties in Illinois}}"Illinois" is the modern spelling for the early French Catholic missionaries and explorers' name for the Illinois Native Americans, a name that was spelled in many different ways in the early records.WEB,weblink Archived copy, 2009-10-23, dead,weblink" title="">weblink June 23, 2010, mdy-all, American scholars previously thought the name "Illinois" meant "man" or "men" in the Miami-Illinois language, with the original iliniwek transformed via French into Illinois.BOOK, Hodge, Frederick Webb, Frederick Webb Hodge, Handbook of American Indians north of Mexico, Volume 1, 1911, Smithsonian Institution, Bureau of American Ethnology, 26478613,weblink 597, BOOK, Stewart, George R., George R. Stewart, Names on the Land: A Historical Account of Place-Naming in the United States, 1945, Sentry (3rd), 1967, Houghton Mifflin, This etymology is not supported by the Illinois language,{{Citation needed|date=October 2017}} as the word for "man" is ireniwa, and plural of "man" is ireniwaki. The name Illiniwek has also been said to mean "tribe of superior men",WEB,weblink Illinois Symbols, April 20, 2006, State of Illinois, dead,weblink" title="">weblink April 15, 2006, which is a false etymology. The name "Illinois" derives from the Miami-Illinois verb irenwe·wa - "he speaks the regular way". This was taken into the Ojibwe language, perhaps in the Ottawa dialect, and modified into ilinwe· (pluralized as ilinwe·k). The French borrowed these forms, changing the /we/ ending to spell it as -ois, a transliteration for its pronunciation in French of that time. The current spelling form, Illinois, began to appear in the early 1670s, when French colonists had settled in the western area. The Illinois's name for themselves, as attested in all three of the French missionary-period dictionaries of Illinois, was Inoka, of unknown meaning and unrelated to the other terms.BOOK, Callary, Edward, Place Names of Illinois, 2008, University of Illinois Press, 978-0-252-03356-8,weblink 169, JOURNAL, Costa, David J., January 2007, Three American Placenames: Illinois, Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas Newsletter, 25, 4, 9–12, 1046-4476,weblink May 29, 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 16, 2011, mdy-all,



File:Upper Bluff Lake Dancing Figures plate HRoe 2012.jpg|thumb|Mississippian copper plate found at the Saddle Site in Union County, IllinoisUnion County, IllinoisAmerican Indians of successive cultures lived along the waterways of the Illinois area for thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans. The Koster Site has been excavated and demonstrates 7,000 years of continuous habitation. Cahokia, the largest regional chiefdom and urban center of the Pre-Columbian Mississippian culture, was located near present-day Collinsville, Illinois. They built an urban complex of more than 100 platform and burial mounds, a {{convert|50|acre|4=0|adj=on}} plaza larger than 35 football fields,BOOK, Timothy Pauketat, Timothy R., Pauketat, Cahokia : Ancient Americas Great City on the Mississippi, Viking Press, 2009, 978-0-670-02090-4, 23–34, Pg 23 "Cahokia was so large-covering three to five square miles-that archaeologists have yet to probe many portions of it. Its centerpiece was an open fifty-acre Grand Plaza, surrounded by packed-clay pyramids. The size of thirty-five football fields, the Grand Plaza was at the time the biggest public space ever conceived and executed north of Mexico."...Pg 34 "a flat public square 1,600-plus feet in length and 900-plus feet in width, and a woodhenge of sacred cedar, all in a planned design expressing the culture's cosmology. Monks Mound, the center of the site, is the largest Pre-Columbian structure north of the Valley of Mexico. It is {{convert|100|ft}} high, {{convert|951|ft}} long, {{convert|836|ft}} wide, and covers {{convert|13.8|acre}}.BOOK, Skele, Mike,weblink The Great Knob, Studies in Illinois Archaeology, 1988, 978-0-942579-03-1, 4, It contains about {{convert|814000|cuyd}} of earth.BOOK, Snow, Dean, Archaeology of Native North Americas, 2010, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, 201–203, It was topped by a structure thought to have measured about {{convert|105|ft}} in length and {{convert|48|ft}} in width, covered an area {{convert|5000|sqft}}, and been as much as {{convert|50|ft}} high, making its peak {{convert|150|ft}} above the level of the plaza. The finely crafted ornaments and tools recovered by archaeologists at Cahokia include elaborate ceramics, finely sculptured stonework, carefully embossed and engraved copper and mica sheets, and one funeral blanket for an important chief fashioned from 20,000 shell beads. These artifacts indicate that Cahokia was truly an urban center, with clustered housing, markets, and specialists in toolmaking, hide dressing, potting, jewelry making, shell engraving, weaving and salt making.Nash, Gary B. Red, White and Black: The Peoples of Early North America Los Angeles 2015. Chapter 1, p. 6 The civilization vanished in the 15th century for unknown reasons, but historians and archeologists have speculated that the people depleted the area of resources. Many indigenous tribes engaged in constant warfare. According to Suzanne Austin Alchon, "At one site in the central Illinois River valley, one third of all adults died as a result of violent injuries."BOOK, Austin Alchon
, Suzanne, A pest in the land: new world epidemics in a global perspective,weblink University of New Mexico Press, 2003, 59, 978-0-8263-2871-7,
The next major power in the region was the Illinois Confederation or Illini, a political alliance.E. Hoxie, Encyclopedia of North American Indians (1996) 266-7, 506 As the Illini declined during the Beaver Wars era, members of the Algonquian-speaking Potawatomi, Miami, Sauk, and other tribes including the Fox (Mesquakie), Ioway, Kickapoo, Mascouten, Piankashaw, Shawnee, Wea, and Winnebago (Ho-Chunk) came into the area from the east and north around the Great Lakes.WEB,weblink Native Americans:American Indian Tribes of Illinois,, October 2, 2002, February 27, 2016,

European exploration and settlement prior to 1800

File:Illinois 1718.jpg|thumb|Illinois in 1718, approximate modern state area highlighted, from by Guillaume de L'IsleGuillaume de L'IsleFrench explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet explored the Illinois River in 1673. Marquette soon after founded a mission at the Grand Village of the Illinois in Illinois Country. In 1680, French explorers under René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle and Henri de Tonti constructed a fort at the site of present-day Peoria, and in 1682, a fort atop Starved Rock in today's Starved Rock State Park. French Empire Canadiens came south to settle particularly along the Mississippi River, and Illinois was part of first New France, and then of La Louisiane until 1763, when it passed to the British with their defeat of France in the Seven Years' War. The small French settlements continued, although many French migrated west to Ste. Genevieve and St. Louis, Missouri, to evade British rule.A few British soldiers were posted in Illinois, but few British or American settlers moved there, as the Crown made it part of the territory reserved for Indians west of the Appalachians, and then part of the British Province of Quebec. In 1778, George Rogers Clark claimed Illinois County for Virginia. In a compromise, Virginia ceded the area to the new United States in 1783 and it became part of the Northwest Territory, to be administered by the federal government and later organized as states.BOOK, Biles, Roger, Illinois: A History of the Land and its People, 2005, Northern Illinois University Press, DeKalb, 978-0-87580-349-4, Connecticut ceded northern Illinois in 1786 (see Connecticut Western Reserve).

19th century

{{see also|History of Chicago|History of Nauvoo, Illinois}}

Prior to statehood

The Illinois-Wabash Company was an early claimant to much of Illinois. The Illinois Territory was created on February 3, 1809, with its capital at Kaskaskia, an early French settlement.During the discussions leading up to Illinois's admission to the Union, the proposed northern boundary of the state was moved twice.WEB,weblink Full Remarks from Dave M,, March 16, 2010, February 7, 2011, {{Dead link|date=February 2012}} The original provisions of the Northwest Ordinance had specified a boundary that would have been tangent to the southern tip of Lake Michigan. Such a boundary would have left Illinois with no shoreline on Lake Michigan at all. However, as Indiana had successfully been granted a {{Convert|10|mi|adj=on}} northern extension of its boundary to provide it with a usable lakefront, the original bill for Illinois statehood, submitted to Congress on January 23, 1818, stipulated a northern border at the same latitude as Indiana's, which is defined as 10 miles north of the southernmost extremity of Lake Michigan. However, the Illinois delegate, Nathaniel Pope, wanted more, and lobbied to have the boundary moved further north. The final bill passed by Congress included an amendment to shift the border to 42° 30' north, which is approximately {{convert|51|mi}} north of the Indiana northern border. This shift added {{convert|8500|sqmi|4=-2}} to the state, including the lead mining region near Galena. More importantly, it added nearly 50 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and the Chicago River. Pope and others envisioned a canal that would connect the Chicago and Illinois rivers and thus connect the Great Lakes to the Mississippi.

The State of Illinois prior to the Civil War

In 1818, Illinois became the 21st U.S. state. The capital remained at Kaskaskia, headquartered in a small building rented by the state. In 1819, Vandalia became the capital, and over the next 18 years, three separate buildings were built to serve successively as the capitol building. In 1837, the state legislators representing Sangamon County, under the leadership of state representative Abraham Lincoln, succeeded in having the capital moved to Springfield,WEB,weblink Abraham Lincoln and Springfield – Abraham Lincoln's Classroom,, February 7, 2011, where a fifth capitol building was constructed. A sixth capitol building was erected in 1867, which continues to serve as the Illinois capitol today.Though it was ostensibly a "free state", there was slavery in Illinois. The ethnic French had owned black slaves since the 1720s, and American settlers had already brought slaves into the area from Kentucky. Slavery was nominally banned by the Northwest Ordinance, but that was not enforced for those already holding slaves. When Illinois became a sovereign state in 1818, the Ordinance no longer applied, and about 900 slaves were held in the state. As the southern part of the state, later known as "Egypt" or "Little Egypt",WEB,weblink The other Illinois: How Egypt lost its clout – Chicago Tribune,, June 24, 2001, April 29, 2012, WEB,weblink Southern Illinois Backroads Tourism: In Little Egypt it means bluffs, Superman, even scuba diving " Evansville Courier & Press,, April 29, 2012, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 17, 2013, was largely settled by migrants from the South, the section was hostile to free blacks. Settlers were allowed to bring slaves with them for labor, but, in 1822, state residents voted against making slavery legal. Still, most residents opposed allowing free blacks as permanent residents. Some settlers brought in slaves seasonally or as house servants.Paul Finkelman, Slavery and the Founders: Race and Liberty in the Age of Jefferson, (2001), p. 78 The Illinois Constitution of 1848 was written with a provision for exclusionary laws to be passed. In 1853, John A. Logan helped pass a law to prohibit all African Americans, including freedmen, from settling in the state.James Pickett Jones, Black Jack: John A. Logan and Southern Illinois in the Civil War Era 1967 {{ISBN|0-8093-2002-9}}.File:Battle of Bad Axe.jpg|thumb|upright=1.15|Native women and children fleeing the Battle of Bad Axe during the Black Hawk WarBlack Hawk WarThe winter of 1830–1831 is called the "Winter of the Deep Snow"; a sudden, deep snowfall blanketed the state, making travel impossible for the rest of the winter, and many travelers perished. Several severe winters followed, including the "Winter of the Sudden Freeze". On December 20, 1836, a fast-moving cold front passed through, freezing puddles in minutes and killing many travelers who could not reach shelter. The adverse weather resulted in crop failures in the northern part of the state. The southern part of the state shipped food north, and this may have contributed to its name: "Little Egypt", after the Biblical story of Joseph in Egypt supplying grain to his brothers.Duff, Judge Andrew D. Egypt – Republished, Springhouse Magazine, accessed May 1, 2006.In 1832, the Black Hawk War was fought in Illinois and current-day Wisconsin between the United States and the Sauk, Fox (Meskwaki), and Kickapoo Indian tribes. It represents the end of Indian resistance to white settlement in the Chicago region.ENCYCLOPEDIA,weblink Black Hawk War, Encyclopedia of Chicago, August 10, 2012, The Indians had been forced to leave their homes and move to Iowa in 1831; when they attempted to return, they were attacked and eventually defeated by U.S. militia. The survivors were forced back to Iowa.WEB,weblink The Black Hawk War of 1832, Lewis, James, Abraham Lincoln Historical Digitization Project, August 10, 2012, By 1839, the Latter Day Saints had founded a utopian city called Nauvoo. Located in Hancock County along the Mississippi River, Nauvoo flourished, and soon rivaled Chicago for the position of the state's largest city. But in 1844, the Latter Day Saint movement founder Joseph Smith was killed in the Carthage Jail, about 30 miles away from Nauvoo. Following a succession crisis (Latter Day Saints), Brigham Young led most Latter Day Saints out of Illinois in a mass exodus to present-day Utah; after close to six years of rapid development, Nauvoo rapidly declined afterward.After it was established in 1833, Chicago gained prominence as a Great Lakes port, and then as an Illinois and Michigan Canal port after 1848, and as a rail hub soon afterward. By 1857, Chicago was Illinois's largest city. With the tremendous growth of mines and factories in the state in the 19th century, Illinois was the ground for the formation of labor unions in the United States.In 1847, after lobbying by Dorothea L. Dix, Illinois became one of the first states to establish a system of state-supported treatment of mental illness and disabilities, replacing local almshouses. Dix came into this effort after having met J. O. King, a Jacksonville, Illinois businessman, who invited her to Illinois, where he had been working to build an asylum for the insane. With the lobbying expertise of Dix, plans for the Jacksonville State Hospital (now known as the Jacksonville Developmental Center) were signed into law on March 1, 1847.JOURNAL, Norbury, Frank, Dorothea Dix and the Founding of Illinois' First Mental Hospital, Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Spring 1999, 92, 1, 13–29, 40193299,

Civil War and after

File:Embarkation of General McClernand's Brigade at Cairo.jpg|thumb|right|Embarkation of Union troops from Cairo on January 10, 1862]]During the American Civil War, Illinois ranked fourth in men who served (more than 250,000) in the Union Army, a figure surpassed by only New York, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. Beginning with President Abraham Lincoln's first call for troops and continuing throughout the war, Illinois mustered 150 infantry regiments, which were numbered from the 7th to the 156th regiments. Seventeen cavalry regiments were also gathered, as well as two light artillery regiments."Illinois Infantry, Cavalry, and Artillery Units", Illinois in the Civil War, Retrieved November 26, 2006 The town of Cairo, at the southern tip of the state at the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, served as a strategically important supply base and training center for the Union army. For several months, both General Grant and Admiral Foote had headquarters in Cairo.During the Civil War, and more so afterwards, Chicago's population skyrocketed, which increased its prominence. The Pullman Strike and Haymarket Riot, in particular, greatly influenced the development of the American labor movement. From Sunday, October 8, 1871, until Tuesday, October 10, 1871, the Great Chicago Fire burned in downtown Chicago, destroying {{convert|4|sqmi|spell=in}}.Roland Tweet, Miss Gale's Books: The Beginnings of the Rock Island Public Library, (Rock Island, IL: Rock Island Public Library, 1997), 15.

20th century

At the turn of the 20th century, Illinois had a population of nearly 5 million. Many people from other parts of the country were attracted to the state by employment caused by the then-expanding industrial base. Whites were 98% of the state's population.WEB, Illinois – Race and Hispanic Origin: 1800 to 1990, U.S. Census Bureau,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, July 25, 2008, mdy-all, Bolstered by continued immigration from southern and eastern Europe, and by the African-American Great Migration from the South, Illinois grew and emerged as one of the most important states in the union. By the end of the century, the population had reached 12.4 million.The Century of Progress World's Fair was held at Chicago in 1933. Oil strikes in Marion County and Crawford County led to a boom in 1937, and by 1939, Illinois ranked fourth in U.S. oil production. Illinois manufactured 6.1 percent of total United States military armaments produced during World War II, ranking seventh among the 48 states.Peck, Merton J. & Scherer, Frederic M. The Weapons Acquisition Process: An Economic Analysis (1962) Harvard Business School p.111 Chicago became an ocean port with the opening of the Saint Lawrence Seaway in 1959. The seaway and the Illinois Waterway connected Chicago to both the Mississippi River and the Atlantic Ocean. In 1960, Ray Kroc opened the first McDonald's franchise in Des Plaines (which still exists as a museum, with a working McDonald's across the street).Illinois had a prominent role in the emergence of the nuclear age. In 1942, as part of the Manhattan Project, the University of Chicago conducted the first sustained nuclear chain reaction. In 1957, Argonne National Laboratory, near Chicago, activated the first experimental nuclear power generating system in the United States. By 1960, the first privately financed nuclear plant in the United States, Dresden 1, was dedicated near Morris. In 1967, Fermilab, a national nuclear research facility near Batavia, opened a particle accelerator, which was the world's largest for over 40 years. With eleven plants currently operating, Illinois leads all states in the amount of electricity generated from nuclear power.WEB,weblink ComEd and Electricity Related Messages for Economic Development, February 7, 2011, dead,weblink July 8, 2011, WEB,weblink Home | ComEd – An Exelon Company, ComEd, February 27, 2016, dead,weblink September 14, 2013, mdy-all, In 1961, Illinois became the first state in the nation to adopt the recommendation of the American Law Institute and pass a comprehensive criminal code revision that repealed the law against sodomy. The code also abrogated common law crimes and established an age of consent of 18.WEB, Painter, George, The History of Sodomy Laws in the United States: Illinois,weblink The Sensibilities of Our Forefathers, Gay & Lesbian Archives of the Pacific Northwest, January 12, 2012, August 10, 2004, The state's fourth constitution was adopted in 1970, replacing the 1870 document.{{citation needed|date=September 2019}}The first Farm Aid concert was held in Champaign to benefit American farmers, in 1985. The worst upper Mississippi River flood of the century, the Great Flood of 1993, inundated many towns and thousands of acres of farmland.On August 28, 2017, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill into law that prohibited state and local police from arresting anyone solely due to their immigration status or due to federal detainers.WEB, Bernal, Rafael, Illinois Governor Signs Immigration, Automatic Voter Registration Measures,weblink August 28, 2017, The Hill (newspaper), The Hill, WEB, Tareen, Sophia, Governor Signs Law Limiting Illinois Police on Immigration,weblink August 28, 2017, ABC News (from the Associated Press), September 3, 2019,weblink" title="">weblink September 10, 2017, dead, Some fellow Republicans criticized Rauner for his action, claiming the bill made Illinois a sanctuary state.WEB, Singman, Brooke, GOP Gov. Rauner Accused of Making Illinois a 'Sanctuary State' with New Law,weblink August 28, 2017, Fox News,


{{further|List of ecoregions in Illinois}}(File:National-atlas-illinois.png|upright=1.2|thumb|A map of the state of Illinois, showing major cities, roads, rivers and lakes)Illinois is located in the Midwest Region of the United States and is one of the eight states and Canadian province in the bi-national Great Lakes region of North America.


Illinois's eastern border with Indiana consists of a north-south line at 87° 31′ 30″ west longitude in Lake Michigan at the north, to the Wabash River in the south above Post Vincennes. The Wabash River continues as the eastern/southeastern border with Indiana until the Wabash enters the Ohio River. This marks the beginning of Illinois's southern border with Kentucky, which runs along the northern shoreline of the Ohio River.Wikisource. s:Illinois Constitution of 1818|Illinois Constitution of 1818]]. Most of the western border with Missouri and Iowa is the Mississippi River; Kaskaskia is an exclave of Illinois, lying west of the Mississippi and reachable only from Missouri. The state's northern border with Wisconsin is fixed at 42°  30' north latitude. The northeastern border of Illinois lies in Lake Michigan, within which Illinois shares a water boundary with the state of Michigan, as well as Wisconsin and Indiana.BOOK, Nelson, Ronald E., Illinois: Land and Life in the Prairie State, 1978, Kendall/Hunt, Dubuque, Iowa, 978-0-8403-1831-2,


File:Charles Mound, Illinois.JPG|thumb|Charles Mound, the highest natural point in Illinois at 1,235 feet, is located in the Driftless AreaDriftless AreaThough Illinois lies entirely in the Interior Plains, it does have some minor variation in its elevation. In extreme northwestern Illinois, the Driftless Area, a region of unglaciated and therefore higher and more rugged topography, occupies a small part of the state. Southern Illinois includes the hilly areas around the Shawnee National Forest.Charles Mound, located in this region, has the state's highest elevation above sea level at {{convert|1235|ft}}. Other highlands include the Shawnee Hills in the south, and there is varying topography along its rivers; the Illinois River bisects the state northeast to southwest. The floodplain on the Mississippi River from Alton to the Kaskaskia River is known as the American Bottom.


(File:Chicago downtown view from Sears.JPG|thumb|left|Chicago on Lake Michigan, the third-largest city of the United States)File:Cairo Ohio River Bridge at sunset.jpg|thumb|left|At 279 feet above sea level,WEB,weblink Elevations and Distances, Services, Eastern Region Geography, Information,, 2018-11-22, the lowest elevation point in the state is located near Cairo and the confluence of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. ]]Illinois has three major geographical divisions. Northern Illinois is dominated by Chicago metropolitan area, or Chicagoland, which is the city of Chicago and its suburbs, and the adjoining exurban area into which the metropolis is expanding. As defined by the federal government, the Chicago metro area includes several counties in Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin, and has a population of over 9.8 million people. Chicago itself is a cosmopolitan city, densely populated, industrialized, the transportation hub of the nation, and settled by a wide variety of ethnic groups. The city of Rockford, Illinois's third-largest city and center of the state's fourth largest metropolitan area, sits along Interstates 39 and 90 some {{convert|75|mi|km}} northwest of Chicago. The Quad Cities region, located along the Mississippi River in northern Illinois, had a population of 381,342 in 2011.The midsection of Illinois is the second major division, called Central Illinois. It is an area of mainly prairie and known as the Heart of Illinois. It is characterized by small towns and medium-small cities. The western section (west of the Illinois River) was originally part of the Military Tract of 1812 and forms the conspicuous western bulge of the state. Agriculture, particularly corn and soybeans, as well as educational institutions and manufacturing centers, figure prominently in Central Illinois. Cities include Peoria; Springfield, the state capital; Quincy; Decatur; Bloomington-Normal; and Champaign-Urbana.The third division is Southern Illinois, comprising the area south of U.S. Route 50, including Little Egypt, near the juncture of the Mississippi River and Ohio River. Southern Illinois is the site of the ancient city of Cahokia, as well as the site of the first state capital at Kaskaskia, which today is separated from the rest of the state by the Mississippi River.BOOK, Horsley, A. Doyne, Illinois: A Geography, 1986, Westview Press, Boulder, 978-0-86531-522-8, This region has a somewhat warmer winter climate, different variety of crops (including some cotton farming in the past), more rugged topography (due to the area remaining unglaciated during the Illinoian Stage, unlike most of the rest of the state), as well as small-scale oil deposits and coal mining. The Illinois suburbs of St. Louis, such as East St. Louis, are located in this region, and collectively, they are known as the Metro-East. The other somewhat significant concentration of population in Southern Illinois is the Carbondale-Marion-Herrin, Illinois Combined Statistical Area centered on Carbondale and Marion, a two-county area that is home to 123,272 residents. A portion of southeastern Illinois is part of the extended Evansville, Indiana, Metro Area, locally referred to as the Tri-State with Indiana and Kentucky. Seven Illinois counties are in the area.In addition to these three, largely latitudinally defined divisions, all of the region outside the Chicago Metropolitan area is often called "downstate" Illinois. This term is flexible, but is generally meant to mean everything outside the influence of the Chicago area. Thus, some cities in Northern Illinois, such as DeKalb, which is west of Chicago, and Rockford—which is actually north of Chicago—are sometimes incorrectly considered to be 'downstate'.


File:IL_koppen.svg|upright=0.9|thumb|Köppen climate types of Illinois]]Illinois has a climate that varies widely throughout the year. Because of its nearly 400-mile distance between its northernmost and southernmost extremes, as well as its mid-continental situation, most of Illinois has a humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfa), with hot, humid summers and cold winters. The southern part of the state, from about Carbondale southward, has a humid subtropical climate (Koppen Cfa), with more moderate winters. Average yearly precipitation for Illinois varies from just over {{convert|48|in|0}} at the southern tip to around {{convert|35|in|0}} in the northern portion of the state. Normal annual snowfall exceeds {{convert|38|in|0}} in the Chicago area, while the southern portion of the state normally receives less than {{convert|14|in|0}}.Illinois State Climatologist Office {{Webarchive|url= |date=February 7, 2006 }}. Retrieved April 22, 2006. The all-time high temperature was {{convert|117|F|0}}, recorded on July 14, 1954, at East St. Louis, and the all-time low temperature was {{convert|-38|F|0}}, recorded on January 31, 2019 during the January 2019 North American cold wave at a weather station near Mount Carroll,WEB,weblink US National Weather Service Central Illinois, Facebook, en, January 31, 2019, WEB,weblink State Climate Extremes Committee (SCEC), National Centers for Environmental Information, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, April 30, 2019, and confirmed on March 5, 2019.WEB,weblink Illinois State Record Minimum Temperature at Mt. Carroll, March 5, 2019, National Centers for Environmental Information, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, April 30, 2019, This followed the previous record of {{convert|-36|F|0}} recorded on January 5, 1999 near Congerville. Prior to the Mount Carroll record, a temperature of {{convert|-37|F|0}} was recorded on January 15, 2009, at Rochelle, but at a weather station not subjected to the same quality control as official records.NEWS,weblink Congerville about to lose its extreme cold state record, Scott, Hilyard, February 28, 2019,, Peoria, Illinois, March 1, 2019, WEB,weblink Weather Underground, Weather History for Rochelle, IL, January 15, 2009, January 2, 2014, Illinois averages approximately 51 days of thunderstorm activity a year, which ranks somewhat above average in the number of thunderstorm days for the United States. Illinois is vulnerable to tornadoes, with an average of 35 occurring annually, which puts much of the state at around five tornadoes per {{convert|10000|sqmi|km2|-4}} annually."Annual average number of tornadoes, 1953–2004", NOAA National Climatic Data Center. Retrieved October 24, 2006. While tornadoes are no more powerful in Illinois than other states, some of Tornado Alley's deadliest tornadoes on record have occurred in the state. The Tri-State Tornado of 1925 killed 695 people in three states; 613 of the victims died in Illinois.WEB,weblink PAH Webmaster, NWS Paducah, KY: NOAA/NWS 1925 Tri-State Tornado Web Site – General Information, November 2, 2005, November 16, 2006, Other significant high-casualty tornadoes include the 1896 St. Louis – East St. Louis tornado, which killed 111 people in East St. Louis and a May 1917 tornado that killed 101 people in Charleston and Mattoon. Modern developments in storm forecasting and tracking have caused death tolls from tornadoes to decline dramatically, with the 1967 Belvidere – Oak Lawn – Chicago South Side tornado outbreak (58 fatalities) and 1990 Plainfield tornado (29 fatalities) standing out as exceptions. On November 17, 2013, an EF4 tornado touched down and ripped through Washington, Illinois. There were three fatalities.{| class="wikitable" Monthly Normal High and Low Temperatures For Various Illinois Cities! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000; height:17px;"| City! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| January! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| February! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| March! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| April! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| May! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| June! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| July! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| August! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| September! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| October! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| November! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| December! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| Cairo"Average Weather for Cairo, IL {{Webarchive|url= |date=July 10, 2014 }}", 43/25 48/29 59/37 70/46 78/57 86/67 90/71 88/69 81/61 71/49 57/39 46/30! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| Chicago"Chicago Weather {{webarchive |url= |date=May 24, 2008 }}", 31/16 36/21 47/31 59/42 70/52 81/61 85/65 83/65 75/57 64/45 48/34 36/22! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| EdwardsvilleWEB,weblink Average Weather for Edwardsville, IL – Temperature and Precipitation,, January 17, 2007, May 19, 2012,weblink" title="">weblink May 16, 2012, dead, mdy-all, 36/19 42/24 52/34 64/45 75/55 84/64 89/69 86/66 79/58 68/46 53/35 41/25! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| Moline"Moline Weather {{webarchive |url= |date=May 24, 2008 }}", 30/12 36/18 48/29 62/39 73/50 83/60 86/64 84/62 76/53 64/42 48/30 34/18! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| Peoria"Peoria Weather {{webarchive |url= |date=May 24, 2008 }}", 31/14 37/20 49/30 62/40 73/51 82/60 86/65 84/63 77/54 64/42 49/31 36/20! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| Rockford"Rockford Weather {{webarchive |url= |date=May 24, 2008 }}", 27/11 33/16 46/27 59/37 71/48 80/58 83/63 81/61 74/52 62/40 46/29 32/17! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| Springfield"Springfield Weather {{webarchive |url= |date=May 24, 2008 }}", 33/17 39/22 51/32 63/42 74/53 83/62 86/66 84/64 78/55 67/44 51/34 38/23


{{US Census population|1800= 2458|1810= 12282|1820= 55211|1830= 157445|1840= 476183|1850= 851470|1860= 1711951|1870= 2539891|1880= 3077871|1890= 3826352|1900= 4821550|1910= 5638591|1920= 6485280|1930= 7630654|1940= 7897241|1950= 8712176|1960= 10081158|1970= 11113976|1980= 11426518|1990= 11430602|2000= 12419293|2010= 12830632|estimate= 12741080|estyear= 2018PUBLISHER=2010.CENSUS.GOV date=February 2017}}2018 EstimateHTTPS://WWW.CENSUS.GOV/QUICKFACTS/FACT/TABLE/IL,US/PST045218>TITLE=QUICKFACTS ILLINOIS; UNITED STATESWEBSITE=2018 POPULATION ESTIMATESUNITED STATES CENSUS BUREAU, POPULATION DIVISION>DATE=JANUARY 10, 2019DATE=DECEMBER 20, 2018, }}{{Pie chart
| thumb = right
| caption = Racial Makeup of Illinois (2017)WEB,weblink B02001 RACE: Total population - Illinois - 2017 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, July 1, 2017, U.S. Census Bureau, October 11, 2018,
| label1 = White alone
| value1 = 71.24| color2=#36A
| label2 = Black alone
| value2 = 14.21| color1=#6A5
| label3 = Native American alone
| value3 = 0.23 | color3=#FF33AC
| label4 = Asian Alone
| value4 = 5.43 | color4=#1A9
| label5 = Pacific Islander Alone
| value5 = 0.04| color5=#E17720
| label6 = Some other race alone
| value6 = 6.23 | color6=#F0FF00
| label7 = Two or more races
| value7 = 2.62 | color7=#64ECDF
{{Pie chart
| thumb = right
| caption = Racial/Ethnic Makeup of Illinois treating Hispanics as a Separate Category (2017)WEB,weblink B03002 HISPANIC OR LATINO ORIGIN BY RACE - Illinois - 2017 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, July 1, 2017, U.S. Census Bureau, October 11, 2018,
| label1 = White Non-Hispanic
| value1 = 61.20| color2=#36A
| label2 = Black Non-Hispanic
| value2 = 13.99 | color1=#6A5
| label3 = Native American Non-Hispanic
| value3 = 0.10 | color3=#FF33AC
| label4 = Asian Non-Hispanic
| value4 = 5.39 | color4=#1A9
| label5 = Pacific Islander Non-Hispanic
| value5 = 0.03| color5=#E17720
| label6 = Other Non-Hispanic
| value6 = 0.16 | color6=#F0FF00
| label7 = Two or more races Non-Hispanic
| value7 = 1.91 | color7=#64ECDF
| label8 = Hispanic Any Race
| value8 = 17.24 | color8=#9400D3
{{Pie chart
| thumb = right
| caption = Racial Makeup of Hispanics in Illinois (2017)
| label1 = White alone
| value1 = 55.84| color2=#36A
| label2 = Black alone
| value2 = 1.23| color1=#6A5
| label3 = Native American alone
| value3 = 0.58 | color3=#FF33AC
| label4 = Asian Alone
| value4 = 0.24 | color4=#1A9
| label5 = Pacific Islander Alone
| value5 = 0.03| color5=#E17720
| label6 = Some other race alone
| value6 = 38.37 | color6=#F0FF00
| label7 = Two or more races
| value7 = 3.70 | color7=#64ECDF
The United States Census Bureau estimates that the population of Illinois was 12,741,080 in 2018, moving from the fifth-largest state to the sixth-largest state (losing out to Pennsylvania). Illinois's population declined by 60,943 people from July 2017 to July 2018, making it the worst decline of any state in the U.S. in raw terms.NEWS,weblink Census: Illinois loses title of 5th-largest state to Pennsylvania, Berg, Austin, December 20, 2017, Illinois Policy, December 20, 2017, en-US, {{failed verification|date=January 2019|reason=The provided reference describes 2017 data with different quantities than given in this article. When values are updated, references supporting them must be updated, as well.}} Illinois is the most populous state in the Midwest region. Chicago, the third-most populous city in the United States, is the center of the Chicago metropolitan area or Chicagoland, as this area is nicknamed, comprises only 9% of the land area of the state, but contains 65% of the state's residents.According to the 2010 Census, the racial composition of the state was: In the same year 15.8% of the total population was of Hispanic or Latino origin (they may be of any race).Illinois QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau {{webarchive|url= |date=April 1, 2009 }}. Retrieved on July 21, 2013.{| class="wikitable sortable collapsible" style="font-size: 90%;"|+ Illinois Racial Breakdown of Population! Racial composition !! 1990WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, July 25, 2008, Historical Census Statistics on Population Totals By Race, 1790 to 1990, and By Hispanic Origin, 1970 to 1990, For The United States, Regions, Divisions, and States, July 25, 2008,, September 4, 2017, !! 2000WEB,weblink Population of Illinois: Census 2010 and 2000 Interactive Map, Demographics, Statistics, Quick Facts, !! 2010WEB,weblink 2010 Census Data,, September 4, 2017, White American>White 78.3% 73.5% 71.5%African American>Black 14.8% 15.1% 14.5%Asian American>Asian 2.5% 3.4% 4.6%Native Americans in the United States>Native 0.2% 0.2% 0.3%Native Hawaiian andPacific Islander>other Pacific Islander – – –Race and ethnicity in the United States Census>Other race 4.2% 5.8% 6.7%Multiracial American>Two or more races – 1.9% 2.3%The state's most populous ethnic group, non-Hispanic white, has declined from 83.5% in 1970 to 63.3% in 2011.WEB,weblink Illinois QuickFacts, U.S. Census Bureau, dead,weblink" title="">weblink April 1, 2009, {{as of|2011}}, 49.4% of Illinois's population younger than age 1 were minorities (Note: Children born to white Hispanics are counted as minority group).NEWS,weblink Americans under age 1 now mostly minorities, but not in Ohio: Statistical Snapshot, Exner, Rich, June 3, 2012, The Plain Dealer, (File:Population Density of Illinois 2010 Wikipediamap.svg|thumb|left|Density map displaying the population of Illinois)At the 2007 estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, there were 1,768,518 foreign-born inhabitants of the state or 13.8% of the population, with 48.4% from Latin America, 24.6% from Asia, 22.8% from Europe, 2.9% from Africa, 1.2% from Canada, and 0.2% from Oceania. Of the foreign-born population, 43.7% were naturalized U.S. citizens, and 56.3% were not U.S. citizens.WEB, Illinois Selected Social Characteristics in the United States: 2007,weblink 2007 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates, U.S. Census Bureau, 2007, April 9, 2009, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 19, 2009, In 2007, 6.9% of Illinois's population was reported as being under age 5, 24.9% under age 18 and 12.1% were age 65 and over. Females made up approximately 50.7% of the population.WEB, Illinois QuickFacts,weblink U.S. Census Bureau, February 20, 2009, April 9, 2009, dead,weblink" title="">weblink April 1, 2009, According to the 2007 estimates, 21.1% of the population had German ancestry, 13.3% had Irish ancestry, 8% had British ancestry, 7.9% had Polish ancestry, 6.4% had Italian ancestry, 4.6% listed themselves as American, 2.4% had Swedish ancestry, 2.2% had French ancestry, other than Basque, 1.6% had Dutch ancestry, and 1.4% had Norwegian ancestry. Illinois also has large numbers of African Americans and Latinos (mostly Mexicans and Puerto Ricans).Chicago, along the shores of Lake Michigan, is the nation's third largest city. In 2000, 23.3% of Illinois's population lived in the city of Chicago, 43.3% in Cook County, and 65.6% in the counties of the Chicago metropolitan area: Will, DuPage, Kane, Lake, and McHenry counties, as well as Cook County. The remaining population lives in the smaller cities and rural areas that dot the state's plains. As of 2000, the state's center of population was at {{Coord|41.278216|N|88.380238|W|display=inline}}, located in Grundy County, northeast of the village of Mazon.WEB, Population and Population Centroid by State: 2000,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, October 20, 2001, American Congress on Surveying & Mapping, 2008, April 9, 2009, mdy-all,

Birth data

Note: Births in table don't add up, because Hispanics are counted both by their ethnicity and by their race, giving a higher overall number.{| class="wikitable"|+ Live Births by Single Race/Ethnicity of Mother! Race! 2013WEB,weblink Births: Final Data for 2013,, 4 September 2017, ! 2014WEB,weblink Births: Final Data for 2014,, 4 September 2017, ! 2015WEB,weblink Births: Final Data for 2015,, 4 September 2017, ! 201weblink 201weblinkWhite Americans>White:| 119,157 (75.9%)| 119,995 (75.7%)| 119,630 (75.6%)| ...| ... Non-Hispanic whites>Non-Hispanic White| 85,866 (54.7%)| 86,227 (54.4%)| 85,424 (54.0%)| 82,318 (53.3%)| 78,925 (52.8%)African Americans>Black| 27,692 (17.6%)| 28,160 (17.8%)| 28,059 (17.7%)| 25,619 (16.6%)| 25,685 (17.2%)Asian Americans>Asian| 9,848 (6.3%)| 10,174 (6.4%)| 10,222 (6.5%)| 10,015 (6.5%)| 9,650 (6.5%)Native Americans in the United States>American Indian| 234 (0.1%)| 227 (0.1%)| 205 (0.1%)| 110 (0.0%)| 133 (0.1%)Hispanic and Latino Americans>Hispanic (of any race)| 33,454 (21.3%)| 33,803 (21.3%)| 33,902 (21.4%)| 32,635 (21.1%)| 31,428 (21.0%)| Total Illinois| 156,931 (100%)| 158,556 (100%)| 158,116 (100%)| 154,445 (100%)| 149,390 (100%)
  • Since 2016, data for births of White Hispanic origin are not collected, but included in one Hispanic group; persons of Hispanic origin may be of any race.

Urban areas

{{See also|Illinois statistical areas|List of cities in Illinois|List of towns and villages in Illinois}}Chicago is the largest city in the state and the third-most populous city in the United States, with its 2010 population of 2,695,598. The U.S. Census Bureau currently lists seven other cities with populations of over 100,000 within Illinois. Based upon the Census Bureau's official 2010 population:WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, July 18, 2009, Table 1: Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places Over 100,000, Ranked by July 1, 2008 Population: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2008 (SUB-EST2008-01), 2008 Population Estimates, Population Division, United States Census Bureau, July 1, 2009, July 3, 2009, mdy-all, Aurora, a Chicago satellite town that eclipsed Rockford for the title of second-most populous city in Illinois; its 2010 population was 197,899. Rockford, at 152,871, is the third-largest city in the state, and is the largest city in the state not located within the Chicago suburbs. Joliet, located in metropolitan Chicago, is the fourth-largest city in the state, with a population of 147,433. Naperville, a suburb of Chicago, is fifth with 141,853. Naperville and Aurora share a boundary along Illinois Route 59. Springfield, the state's capital, comes in as sixth-most populous with 117,352 residents. Peoria, which decades ago was the second-most populous city in the state, is seventh with 115,007. The eighth-largest and final city in the 100,000 club is Elgin, a northwest suburb of Chicago, with a 2010 population of 108,188.The most populated city in the state south of Springfield is Belleville, with 44,478 people at the 2010 census. It is located in the Illinois portion of Greater St. Louis (often called the Metro-East area), which has a rapidly growing population of over 700,000 people.Other major urban areas include the Champaign-Urbana Metropolitan Area, which has a combined population of almost 230,000 people, the Illinois portion of the Quad Cities area with about 215,000 people, and the Bloomington-Normal area with a combined population of over 165,000.{{Largest cities| name = Illinois| country = Illinois| list_by_pop =| div_name =| div_link = List of counties in Illinois{{!}}County| city_1 = Chicago, Illinois{{!}}Chicago| div_1 = Cook County, Illinois{{!}}Cook| pop_1 = 2,716,450| img_1 = Chicago from Montrose Point 060820.jpg| city_2 = Aurora, Illinois{{!}}Aurora| div_2 = Kane County, Illinois{{!}}Kane| pop_2 = 200,965| img_2 = Aurora Stolp Island Fox R.JPG| city_3 = Joliet, Illinois{{!}}Joliet| div_3 = Will County, Illinois{{!}}Will| pop_3 = 148,462| img_3 = Rialto_Square_Theatre_in_Joliet_IL,_23_Nov_2012.jpg| city_4 = Naperville, Illinois{{!}}Naperville| div_4 = DuPage County, Illinois{{!}}DuPage| pop_4 = 147,682| img_4 =| city_5 = Rockford, Illinois{{!}}Rockford| div_5 = Winnebago County, Illinois{{!}}Winnebago| pop_5 = 147,051| img_5 = Rockford, IL Rockford Register Star 01.JPG| city_6 = Springfield, Illinois{{!}}Springfield| div_6 = Sangamon County, Illinois{{!}}Sangamon| pop_6 = 114,868| img_6 =| city_7 = Elgin, Illinois{{!}}Elgin| div_7 = Kane County, Illinois{{!}}Kane| pop_7 = 111,683| img_7 =| city_8 = Peoria, Illinois{{!}}Peoria| div_8 = Peoria County, Illinois{{!}}Peoria| pop_8 = 111,388| img_8 =| city_9 = Waukegan, Illinois{{!}}Waukegan| div_9 = Lake County, Illinois{{!}}Lake| pop_9 = 87,729| img_9 =| city_10 = Champaign, Illinois{{!}}Champaign| div_10 = Champaign County, Illinois{{!}}Champaign| pop_10 = 87,432| img_10 =}}


The official language of Illinois is English,WEB,weblink State Designations Act, Illinois Compiled Statutes, October 9, 2014, although between 1923 and 1969, state law gave official status to "the American language". Nearly 80% of people in Illinois speak English natively, and most of the rest speak it fluently as a second language.WEB,weblink Language Use in the United States: American Community Survey Reports, Ryan, Camille, August 2013,, United States Census Bureau, March 30, 2014,weblink" title="">weblink February 5, 2016, dead, mdy-all, A number of dialects of American English are spoken, ranging from Inland Northern American English and African-American English around Chicago, to Midland American English in Central Illinois, to Southern American English in the far south.Over 20% of Illinoians speak a language other than English at home, of which Spanish is by far the most widespread, at more than 12% of the total population.WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, June 19, 2006, Illinois, Modern Language Association, October 9, 2014, mdy-all, A sizeable number of Polish speakers is present in the Chicago Metropolitan Area.


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Roman Catholics constitute the single largest religious denomination in Illinois; they are heavily concentrated in and around Chicago, and account for nearly 30% of the state's population.WEB,weblink Roman Catholicism percentage of Catholics statistics – states compared – People data on StateMaster,, May 15, 2012, May 19, 2012,weblink May 30, 2012, dead, However, taken together as a group, the various Protestant denominations comprise a greater percentage of the state's population than do Catholics. In 2010 Catholics in Illinois numbered 3,648,907. The largest Protestant denominations were the United Methodist Church with 314,461, and the Southern Baptist Convention, with 283,519 members. Illinois has one of the largest concentrations of Missouri Synod Lutherans in the United States.Illinois played an important role in the early Latter Day Saint movement, with Nauvoo, Illinois, becoming a gathering place for Mormons in the early 1840s. Nauvoo was the location of the succession crisis, which led to the separation of the Mormon movement into several Latter Day Saint sects. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the largest of the sects to emerge from the Mormon schism, has over 55,000 adherents in Illinois today.WEB,weblink Newsroom – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,, February 7, 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink August 25, 2010,

Other Abrahamic religious communities

A significant number of adherents of other Abrahamic faiths can be found in Illinois. Largely concentrated in the Chicago metropolitan area, followers of the Muslim, Bahá'í, and Jewish religions all call the state home.WEB,weblink The Association of Religion Data Archives | County Membership Report,, November 12, 2013,weblink" title="">weblink November 12, 2013, dead, Muslims constituted the largest non-Christian group, with 359,264 adherents.WEB,weblink The Association of Religion Data Archives | State Membership Report,, November 12, 2013,weblink" title="">weblink November 12, 2013, dead, Illinois has the largest concentration of Muslims by state in the country, with 2,800 Muslims per 100,000 citizens.Barooah, Jahnabi (June 27, 2012). "PHOTOS: Most And Least Muslim States In America". Huffington Post. The largest and oldest surviving Bahá'í House of Worship in the world is located in Wilmette, Illinois, and the oldest standing mosque in the U.S. is the Al-Sadiq Mosque of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, located in the Bronzeville neighborhood of Chicago. The Chicago area has a very large Jewish community, particularly in the suburbs of Skokie and Morton Grove. Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is the Windy City's first Jewish mayor.

Other religions

Chicago is also home to a very large population of Hindus, Sikhs, Jains, and Buddhists. The Bahá'í House of Worship in Wilmette is the center of that religion's worship in North America.WEB,weblink The Bahá'í House of Worship, Bahá'ís of the United States, March 6, 2019,


{{See also|Illinois locations by per capita income}}File:ChicagoFedblgd.JPG|thumb|right|The Federal Reserve Bank of ChicagoFederal Reserve Bank of ChicagoThe dollar gross state product for Illinois was estimated to be {{US$|880}} billion in 2018.weblink The state's 2018 per capita gross state product was estimated to be around $70,000,WEB, GDP by State,weblink Greyhill Advisors, September 16, 2011, and its per capita personal income was estimated to be {{US$|41,411}} in 2009.WEB,weblink Table 2. Annual Personal Income and Per Capita Personal Income by State and Region, April 2010, Survey of Current Business – Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, April 24, 2010, As of February 2019, the unemployment rate in Illinois reached 4.2%.NEWS, Moody's sees reason for optimism over Illinois economy,weblink 20 February 2019, Crain's Chicago Business, 18 February 2019, en, Illinois's minimum wage will rise to $15 per hour by 2025, making it one of the highest in the nation.NEWS, Petrella, Dan, Gov. J.B. Pritzker signs law raising Illinois' minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025,weblink 20 February 2019,,


{{Panorama|image = File:Corn fields near Royal, Illinois.jpg|height = 180|alt = Corn and soybean fields near Royal, Illinois|caption = Corn and soybean fields near Royal, Illinois}}(File:Acres of Harvested Wheat in Illinois in 2012.pdf|thumb|Acres of harvested wheat in Illinois in 2012)Illinois's major agricultural outputs are corn, soybeans, hogs, cattle, dairy products, and wheat. In most years, Illinois is either the first or second state for the highest production of soybeans, with a harvest of 427.7 million bushels (11.64 million metric tons) in 2008, after Iowa's production of 444.82 million bushels (12.11 million metric tons).WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, September 13, 2012, Soybean Production by State 2008, 2009, Soy Stats, The American Soybean Association, January 19, 2010, Illinois ranks second in U.S. corn production with more than 1.5 billion bushels produced annually.WEB,weblink Ethanol Fact Sheet, 2010, Illinois Corn Growers Association, January 18, 2010, dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 23, 2011, With a production capacity of 1.5 billion gallons per year, Illinois is a top producer of ethanol, ranking third in the United States in 2011.WEB,weblink Illinois – State Energy Profile Overview – U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA),, March 19, 2015, February 27, 2016, Illinois is a leader in food manufacturing and meat processing.Facts About Illinois Agriculture, Illinois Department of Agriculture. Accessed online April 16, 2012 Although Chicago may no longer be "Hog Butcher for the World", the Chicago area remains a global center for food manufacture and meat processing, with many plants, processing houses, and distribution facilities concentrated in the area of the former Union Stock Yards."Meatpacking in Illinois History by Wilson J. Warren, Illinois History Teacher, 3:2, 2006. Access online April 16, 2012. Illinois also produces wine, and the state is home to two American viticultural areas. In the area of The Meeting of the Great Rivers Scenic Byway, peaches and apples are grown. The German immigrants from agricultural backgrounds who settled in Illinois in the mid- to late 19th century are in part responsible for the profusion of fruit orchards in that area of Illinois.WEB, Kathleen Walls,weblink Agri Trails,, February 27, 2016, Illinois's universities are actively researching alternative agricultural products as alternative crops.


Illinois is one of the nation's manufacturing leaders, boasting annual value added productivity by manufacturing of over $107 billion in 2006. {{as of|2011}}, Illinois is ranked as the 4th-most productive manufacturing state in the country, behind California, Texas, and Ohio.WEB,weblink DCEO: Home,, February 27, 2016,weblink" title="">weblink May 12, 2013, dead, mdy-all, About three quarters of the state's manufacturers are located in the Northeastern Opportunity Return Region, with 38 percent of Illinois's approximately 18,900 manufacturing plants located in Cook County. As of 2006, the leading manufacturing industries in Illinois, based upon value-added, were chemical manufacturing ($18.3 billion), machinery manufacturing ($13.4 billion), food manufacturing ($12.9 billion), fabricated metal products ($11.5 billion), transportation equipment ($7.4 billion), plastics and rubber products ($7.0 billion), and computer and electronic products ($6.1 billion).WEB,weblink Manufacturing in Illinois, 2009, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, January 19, 2010, dead,weblink" title="">weblink September 29, 2011, mdy-all,


By the early 2000s, Illinois's economy had moved toward a dependence on high-value-added services, such as financial trading, higher education, law, logistics, and medicine. In some cases, these services clustered around institutions that hearkened back to Illinois's earlier economies. For example, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, a trading exchange for global derivatives, had begun its life as an agricultural futures market. Other important non-manufacturing industries include publishing, tourism, and energy production and distribution.


Venture capitalists funded a total of approximately $62 billion in the US economy in 2016. Of this amount, Illinois-based companies received approximately $1.1 billion. Similarly, in FY 2016, the US federal government spent $461 billion on contracts in the US. Of this amount, Illinois based companies received approximately $8.7 billion.WEB,weblink Illinois — Want to be a Pioneer in Growing Companies, Jobs, and Competitiveness?, Pradhan, Nitin, August 28, 2017, Medium, September 4, 2017,


{{see also|List of power stations in Illinois|Solar power in Illinois}}Illinois is a net importer of fuels for energy, despite large coal resources and some minor oil production. Illinois exports electricity, ranking fifth among states in electricity production and seventh in electricity consumption."Illinois in the Global Energy Marketplace {{webarchive|url= |date=May 17, 2008 }}", Robert Finley, 2001. Illinois State Geological Survey publication.


The coal industry of Illinois has its origins in the middle 19th century, when entrepreneurs such as Jacob Loose discovered coal in locations such as Sangamon County. Jacob Bunn contributed to the development of the Illinois coal industry, and was a founder and owner of the Western Coal & Mining Company of Illinois. About 68% of Illinois has coal-bearing strata of the Pennsylvanian geologic period. According to the Illinois State Geological Survey, 211 billion tons of bituminous coal are estimated to lie under the surface, having a total heating value greater than the estimated oil deposits in the Arabian Peninsula.Illinois State Geological Survey. Coal in Illinois {{Webarchive|url= |date=February 12, 2012 }} Retrieved December 4, 2008. However, this coal has a high sulfur content, which causes acid rain, unless special equipment is used to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions. Many Illinois power plants are not equipped to burn high-sulfur coal. In 1999, Illinois produced 40.4 million tons of coal, but only 17 million tons (42%) of Illinois coal was consumed in Illinois. Most of the coal produced in Illinois is exported to other states and countries. In 2008, Illinois exported 3 million tons of coal, and was projected to export 9 million tons in 2011, as demand for energy grows in places such as China, India, and elsewhere in Asia and Europe.WEB,weblink DCEO: Home,, February 27, 2016,weblink" title="">weblink October 29, 2013, dead, mdy-all, {{as of|2010}}, Illinois was ranked third in recoverable coal reserves at producing mines in the nation. Most of the coal produced in Illinois is exported to other states, while much of the coal burned for power in Illinois (21 million tons in 1998) is mined in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming.Mattoon was recently chosen as the site for the Department of Energy's FutureGen project, a 275-megawatt experimental zero emission coal-burning power plant that the DOE just gave a second round of funding. In 2010, after a number of setbacks, the city of Mattoon backed out of the project.WEB,weblink Illinois Town Gives Up on Futurgen,, August 12, 2010, April 29, 2012, dead,weblink" title="">weblink March 9, 2012,


Illinois is a leading refiner of petroleum in the American Midwest, with a combined crude oil distillation capacity of nearly {{convert|900000|oilbbl/d|m3/d}}. However, Illinois has very limited crude oil proved reserves that account for less than 1% of U.S. crude oil proved reserves. Residential heating is 81% natural gas compared to less than 1% heating oil. Illinois is ranked 14th in oil production among states, with a daily output of approximately {{convert|28000|oilbbl|m3}} in 2005.United States Department of Energy. Petroleum Profile: Illinois {{webarchive |url= |date=October 8, 2009 }}. Retrieved April 4, 2006.WEB,weblink Illinois – U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA),, April 19, 2012, April 29, 2012,

Nuclear power

File:Byron Nuclear Generating Station.jpg|thumb|Byron Nuclear Generating Station in Ogle County ]](File:Illinois wind resource map 50m 800.jpg|thumb|Average annual wind power distribution for Illinois, {{convert|50|m|abbr=on}} height above ground (2009))Nuclear power arguably began in Illinois with the Chicago Pile-1, the world's first artificial self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction in the world's first nuclear reactor, built on the University of Chicago campus. There are six operating nuclear power plants in Illinois: Braidwood, Byron, Clinton, Dresden, LaSalle, and Quad Cities.WEB,weblink Nuclear State Profiles,, April 29, 2012, With the exception of the single-unit Clinton plant, each of these facilities has two reactors. Three reactors have been permanently shut down and are in various stages of decommissioning: Dresden-1 and Zion-1 and 2. Illinois ranked first in the nation in 2010 in both nuclear capacity and nuclear generation. Generation from its nuclear power plants accounted for 12 percent of the nation's total. In 2007, 48% of Illinois's electricity was generated using nuclear power.WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, November 9, 2004, Illinois Nuclear Industry, November 6, 2009, U.S. Energy Information Administration, January 29, 2010, The Morris Operation is the only de facto high-level radioactive waste storage site in the United States.

Wind power

Illinois has seen growing interest in the use of wind power for electrical generation."Illinois Wind". Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs, Western Illinois University {{webarchive |url= |date=June 22, 2007 }} Most of Illinois was rated in 2009 as "marginal or fair" for wind energy production by the U.S. Department of Energy, with some western sections rated "good" and parts of the south rated "poor".WEB,weblink Illinois Wind Activities, October 20, 2009, EERE, U.S. Department of Energy, January 14, 2010, dead,weblink" title="">weblink February 9, 2010, These ratings are for wind turbines with {{convert|50|m|adj=on|sp=us}} hub heights; newer wind turbines are taller, enabling them to reach stronger winds farther from the ground. As a result, more areas of Illinois have become prospective wind farm sites. As of September 2009, Illinois had 1116.06 MW of installed wind power nameplate capacity with another 741.9 MW under construction.WEB,weblink U.S. Wind Energy Projects – Illinois, September 30, 2009, American Wind Energy Association, January 14, 2010, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 5, 2010, Illinois ranked ninth among U.S. states in installed wind power capacity, and sixteenth by potential capacity. Large wind farms in Illinois include Twin Groves, Rail Splitter, EcoGrove, and Mendota Hills.As of 2007, wind energy represented only 1.7% of Illinois's energy production, and it was estimated that wind power could provide 5–10% of the state's energy needs."Wind Power on the Illinois Horizon", Rob Kanter, September 14, 2006. University of Illinois Environmental Council.WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, May 27, 2008, Illinois Renewable Electricity Profile, 2007, U.S. Energy Information Administration, January 15, 2010, mdy-all, Also, the Illinois General Assembly mandated in 2007 that by 2025, 25% of all electricity generated in Illinois is to come from renewable resources.WEB,weblink Wind Farm Conference Tackles Complicated Issue, Olbert, Lori, December 13, 2007,, WYZZ-TV/WMBD-TV, January 15, 2010, {{Dead link|date=June 2016|bot=medic}}{{cbignore|bot=medic}}


Illinois is ranked second in corn production among U.S. states, and Illinois corn is used to produce 40% of the ethanol consumed in the United States. The Archer Daniels Midland corporation in Decatur, Illinois, is the world's leading producer of ethanol from corn.The National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center (NCERC), the world's only facility dedicated to researching the ways and means of converting corn (maize) to ethanol is located on the campus of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.WEB,weblink ILFRA,, February 27, 2016,weblink" title="">weblink March 4, 2016, dead, WEB,weblink Archived copy, 2013-09-12, dead,weblink" title="">weblink October 6, 2013, mdy-all, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign is one of the partners in the Energy Biosciences Institute (EBI), a $500 million biofuels research project funded by petroleum giant BP.WEB,weblink BP Pledges $500 Million for Energy Biosciences Institute and Plans New Business to Exploit Research,, June 14, 2006, May 19, 2012, dead,weblink" title="">weblink May 19, 2012, WEB,weblink Gov. Blagojevich joins Gov. Schwarzenegger, top BP executives to celebrate launch of $500 million biosciences energy research partnership with University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, UC-Berkeley,, February 1, 2007, May 19, 2012, dead,weblink" title="">weblink May 26, 2012,


Illinois's state income tax is calculated by multiplying net income by a flat rate. In 1990, that rate was set at 3%, but in 2010, the General Assembly voted in a temporary increase in the rate to 5%; the new rate went into effect on January 1, 2011; the personal income rate partially sunset on January 1, 2015 to 3.75%, while the corporate income tax fell to 5.25%.NEWS, Pierog, Karen,weblink Illinois lawmakers pass big tax hike to aid budget, Reuters, January 12, 2011, February 7, 2011, Illinois Department of Revenue. Individual Income Tax {{Webarchive|url= |date=September 23, 2006 }}. Retrieved January 30, 2011. Illinois failed to pass a budget from 2015 - 2017, after the 736-day budget impasse, a budget was passed in Illinois after lawmakers overturned Governor Bruce Rauner's veto; this budget raised the personal income rate to 4.95% and the corporate rate to 7%.WEB, weblink Consequences of Illinois' 2015-2016 Budget Impasse and Fiscal Outlook, Mendoza, Susana, September 18, 2018, Illinois Comptroller, There are two rates for state sales tax: 6.25% for general merchandise and 1% for qualifying food, drugs, and medical appliances.Illinois Department of Revenue. Illinois Sales Tax Reference Manual (PDF) {{webarchive|url= |date=May 27, 2008 }}. p133. January 1, 2006. The property tax is a major source of tax revenue for local government taxing districts. The property tax is a local—not state—tax, imposed by local government taxing districts, which include counties, townships, municipalities, school districts, and special taxation districts. The property tax in Illinois is imposed only on real property.On May 1, 2019, the Illinois Senate voted to a approve a constitutional amendment to change from a flat tax rate to a graduated rate, in a 73-44 vote. The Governor, J.B. Pritzker, approved the bill on May 27, 2019. It was scheduledWEB,weblink Graduated income tax question heads to ballot as House OKs constitutional amendment, Sfondeles, Tina, May 27, 2019,, Chicago Sun Times, May 30, 2019, for a 2020 general election ballot voteWEB,weblink PRITZKER's BIG WIN — BRADY, MUNOZ stake in video gambling — ABORTION BILL fate uncertain, Kapos, Shia, May 28, 2019,, Politico, May 30, 2019, and requires 60 percent voter approval. It needed 71 votes to pass, with taxpayers making over $250,000 to be impacted. It also includes $100 million for property tax relief.WEB,weblink Illinois graduated income tax plan will go to voters after Governor JB Pritzker's bill passes the State House, Wall, Craig, May 27, 2019,, ABC 7, May 30, 2019, As of 2017 Chicago had the highest state and local sales tax rate for a U.S. city with a populations above 200,000, at 10.250%.WEB, Walczak, Jared, Sales Tax Rates in Major Cities, Midyear 2017,weblink, Tax Foundation, 31 March 2019, The state of Illinois has the second highest rate of real estate tax: 2.31%, which is second only to New Jersey at 2.44%.WEB, Kiernan, John S, 2019's Property Taxes by State,weblink wallethub, Evolution Finance, Inc., 31 March 2019, Toll roads are a de facto user tax on the citizens and visitors to the state of Illinois. Illinois ranks seventh out of the 11 states with the most miles of toll roads, at 282.1 miles. Chicago ranks fourth in most expensive toll roads in America by the mile, with the Chicago Skyway charging 51.2 cents per mile.WEB, Most Expensive Toll Roads in the United States,weblink, EZ Freight Factoring, 31 March 2019, Illinois also has the 11th highest gasoline tax by state, at 37.5 cents per gallon.WEB, Stebbins, Samuel, How much gas tax adds to cost of filling up your car in every state,weblink usatoday, 24/7 Wall Street, 31 March 2019,



Illinois has numerous museums; the greatest concentration of these are in Chicago. Several museums in Chicago are ranked as some of the best in the world. These include the John G. Shedd Aquarium, the Field Museum of Natural History, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Adler Planetarium, and the Museum of Science and Industry.The modern Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield is the largest and most attended presidential library in the country. The Illinois State Museum boasts a collection of 13.5 million objects that tell the story of Illinois life, land, people, and art. The ISM is among only 5% of the nation's museums that are accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. Other historical museums in the state include the Polish Museum of America in Chicago; Magnolia Manor in Cairo; Easley Pioneer Museum in Ipava; the Elihu Benjamin Washburne; Ulysses S. Grant Homes, both in Galena; and the Chanute Air Museum, located on the former Chanute Air Force Base in Rantoul.The Chicago metropolitan area also hosts two zoos: The very large Brookfield Zoo, located approximately 10 miles west of the city center in suburban Brookfield, contains over 2,300 animals and covers {{convert|216|acre}}. The Lincoln Park Zoo is located in huge Lincoln Park on Chicago's North Side, approximately {{convert|3|mi}} north of the Loop. The zoo covers over {{convert|35|acre}} within the park.File:Vandalia-Courthouse.jpg|Vandalia State House State Historic Site in VandaliaFile:460955752 a95ede20a4 o.jpg|The Museum of Science and Industry in ChicagoFile:Magnolia Manor.jpg|Magnolia Manor is a Victorian period historic house museum in Cairo.File:Lincoln Home 1.jpg|Lincoln Home National Historic Site in SpringfieldFile:20070822 Polish Museum.JPG|The Polish Museum of America in ChicagoFile:CBQ 1926 20050716 Illinois Railway Museum.jpg|A Railway Post Office preserved at the Illinois Railway Museum in Union


File:Riders {{sic|A|ccordian|hide=y}}.jpg|thumb|right|Joey Miskulin, an inductee of the International Polka AssociationInternational Polka AssociationIllinois is a leader in music education, having hosted the Midwest Clinic International Band and Orchestra Conference since 1946, as well being home to the Illinois Music Educators Association (IMEA), one of the largest professional music educator's organizations in the country. Each summer since 2004, Southern Illinois University Carbondale has played host to the Southern Illinois Music Festival, which presents dozens of performances throughout the region. Past featured artists include the Eroica Trio and violinist David Kim.Chicago, in the northeast corner of the state, is a major center for musicCenterstage Chicago {{webarchive|url= |date=July 8, 2008 }} Retrieved on September 18, 2008 in the midwestern United States where distinctive forms of blues (greatly responsible for the future creation of rock and roll), and house music, a genre of electronic dance music, were developed.The Great Migration of poor black workers from the South into the industrial cities brought traditional jazz and blues music to the city, resulting in Chicago blues and "Chicago-style" Dixieland jazz. Notable blues artists included Muddy Waters, Junior Wells, Howlin' Wolf and both Sonny Boy Williamsons; jazz greats included Nat King Cole, Gene Ammons, Benny Goodman, and Bud Freeman. Chicago is also well known for its soul music.In the early 1930s, Gospel music began to gain popularity in Chicago due to Thomas A. Dorsey's contributions at Pilgrim Baptist Church.In the 1980s and 1990s, heavy rock, punk, and hip hop also became popular in Chicago. Orchestras in Chicago include the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, and the Chicago Sinfonietta.Chicago Sinfonietta Website. Retrieved on November 7, 2008


John Hughes, who moved from Grosse Pointe to Northbrook, based many films of his in Chicago, and its suburbs. Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Home Alone, The Breakfast Club, and all of his films take place in the fictional Shermer, Illinois (the original name of Northbrook was Shermerville, and Hughes's High School, Glenbrook North High School, is on Shermer Road). Most locations in his films include Glenbrook North, the former Maine North High School, the Ben Rose House in Highland Park, and the famous Home Alone house in Winnetka, Illinois.


File:Soldier field 2006.jpg|right|thumb|Soldier FieldSoldier Field

Major league sports

As one of the United States' major metropolises, all major sports leagues have teams headquartered in Chicago.

Other top-level professional sports

Minor league sports

Many minor league teams also call Illinois their home. They include:

College sports

The state features 13 athletic programs that compete in NCAA Division I, the highest level of U.S. college sports.The two most prominent are the Illinois Fighting Illini and Northwestern Wildcats, both members of the Big Ten Conference and the only ones competing in one of the so-called "Power Five conferences". The Fighting Illini football team has won five national championships and three Rose Bowl Games, whereas the men's basketball team has won 17 conference seasons and played five Final Fours. Meanwhile, the Wildcats have won eight football conference championships and one Rose Bowl Game.The Northern Illinois Huskies from DeKalb, Illinois compete in the Mid-American Conference winning 4 conference championships and earning a bid in the Orange Bowl along with producing Heisman candidate Jordan Lynch at quarterback. The Huskies are the state's only other team competing in the Football Bowl Subdivision, the top level of NCAA football.Four schools have football programs that compete in the second level of Division I football, the Football Championship Subdivision. The Illinois State Redbirds (Normal, adjacent to Bloomington) and Southern Illinois Salukis (the latter representing Southern Illinois University's main campus in Carbondale) are members of the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) for non-football sports and the Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC). The Western Illinois Leathernecks (Macomb) are full members of the Summit League, which does not sponsor football, and also compete in the MVFC. The Eastern Illinois Panthers (Charleston) are members of the Ohio Valley Conference (OVC).The city of Chicago is home to four Division I programs that do not sponsor football. The DePaul Blue Demons, with main campuses in Lincoln Park and the Loop, are members of the Big East Conference. The Loyola Ramblers, with their main campus straddling the Edgewater and Rogers Park community areas on the city's far north side, compete in the MVC. The UIC Flames, from the Near West Side next to the Loop, are in the Horizon League. The Chicago State Cougars, from the city's south side, compete in the Western Athletic Conference.Finally, two non-football Division I programs are located downstate. The Bradley Braves (Peoria) are MVC members, and the SIU Edwardsville Cougars (in the Metro East region across the Mississippi River from St. Louis) compete in the OVC.

Former Chicago sports franchises

Folded teams

The city was formerly home to several other teams that either failed to survive, or that belonged to leagues that folded.

Relocated teams

The NFL's Arizona Cardinals, who currently play in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale, Arizona, played in Chicago as the Chicago Cardinals, until moving to St. Louis, Missouri after the 1959 season. An NBA expansion team known as the Chicago Packers in 1961–1962, and as the Chicago Zephyrs the following year, moved to Baltimore after the 1962–1963 season. The franchise is now known as the Washington Wizards.

Professional sports teams outside Chicago

The Peoria Chiefs and Kane County Cougars are minor league baseball teams affiliated with MLB. The Schaumburg Boomers and Lake County Fielders are members of the North American League, and the Southern Illinois Miners, Gateway Grizzlies, Joliet Slammers, Windy City ThunderBolts, and Normal CornBelters belong to the Frontier League.In addition to the Chicago Wolves, the AHL also has the Rockford IceHogs serving as the AHL affiliate of the Chicago Blackhawks. The second incarnation of the Peoria Rivermen plays in the SPHL.

Motor racing

Motor racing oval tracks at the Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, the Chicago Motor Speedway in Cicero and the Gateway International Raceway in Madison, near St. Louis, have hosted NASCAR, CART, and IRL races, whereas the Sports Car Club of America, among other national and regional road racing clubs, have visited the Autobahn Country Club in Joliet, the Blackhawk Farms Raceway in South Beloit and the former Meadowdale International Raceway in Carpentersville. Illinois also has several short tracks and dragstrips. The dragstrip at Gateway International Raceway and the Route 66 Raceway, which sits on the same property as the Chicagoland Speedway, both host NHRA drag races.


Illinois features several golf courses, such as Olympia Fields, Medinah, Midlothian, Cog Hill, and Conway Farms, which have often hosted the BMW Championship, Western Open, and Women's Western Open.Also, the state has hosted 13 editions of the U.S. Open (latest at Olympia Fields in 2003), six editions of the PGA Championship (latest at Medinah in 2006), three editions of the U.S. Women's Open (latest at The Merit Club), the 2009 Solheim Cup (at Rich Harvest Farms), and the 2012 Ryder Cup (at Medinah).The John Deere Classic is a regular PGA Tour event played in the Quad Cities since 1971, whereas the Encompass Championship is a Champions Tour event since 2013. Previously, the LPGA State Farm Classic was an LPGA Tour event from 1976 to 2011.

Parks and recreation

File:Garden of the gods 2.jpg|thumb|right|Shawnee National ForestShawnee National ForestThe Illinois state parks system began in 1908 with what is now Fort Massac State Park, becoming the first park in a system encompassing over 60 parks and about the same number of recreational and wildlife areas.Areas under the protection of the National Park Service include: the Illinois and Michigan Canal National Heritage Corridor near Lockport,WEB, Illinois & Michigan Canal, National Park Service, July 15, 2008,weblink dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 26, 2008, mdy-all, the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail, the Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield, the Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail, the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail, the American Discovery Trail,WEB, Illinois, National Park Service, July 15, 2008,weblink and the Pullman National Monument. The federal government also manages the Shawnee National Forest and the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie.

Law and government

The government of Illinois, under the Constitution of Illinois, has three branches of government: executive, legislative and judicial. The executive branch is split into several statewide elected offices, with the Governor as chief executive. Legislative functions are granted to the Illinois General Assembly. The judiciary is composed of the Supreme Court and lower courts.File:James R. Thompson Center.JPG|thumb|The James R. Thompson CenterJames R. Thompson CenterThe Illinois General Assembly is the state legislature, composed of the 118-member Illinois House of Representatives and the 59-member Illinois Senate. The members of the General Assembly are elected at the beginning of each even-numbered year. The Illinois Compiled Statutes (ILCS) are the codified statutes of a general and permanent nature.BOOK, Illinois Criminal Law: A Survey of Crimes and Defenses, John F., Decker, Christopher, Kopacz, 2012, 5th, LexisNexis, 978-0-7698-5284-3, {{Google books, l2I_8OvYAVYC, PT24, yes, |at=§ 1.01}}BOOK, Tapping State Government Information Sources, 126, Lori L., Smith, Daniel C., Barkley, Daniel C., Cornwall, Eric W., Johnson, J. Louise, Malcomb, 2003, Greenwood Publishing Group, 978-1-57356-387-1, 2002044846, {{Google books, 4zo-J7chfmMC, PA126, yes, }}The executive branch is composed of six elected officers and their offices as well as numerous other departments. The six elected officers are: Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Comptroller, and Treasurer. The government of Illinois has numerous departments, agencies, boards and commissions, but the so-called code departments provide most of the state's services.BOOK, Governing Illinois: Your Connection to State and Local Government, The Governor and the Executive Branch, 78–79, Judy Lee, Uphoff, Nancy S., Lind, Erik, Rankin, 4th, Center Publications, Center for State Policy and Leadership, University of Illinois at Springfield, 2012, 978-0-938943-28-0,weblink dead,weblink" title="">weblink June 22, 2013, mdy-all, {{ILCS|20|5}}The Judiciary of Illinois is the unified court system of Illinois. It consists of the Supreme Court, Appellate Court, and Circuit Courts. The Supreme Court oversees the administration of the court system.The administrative divisions of Illinois are counties, townships, precincts, cities, towns, villages, and special-purpose districts.{{citation|title=Individual State Descriptions: 2007|series=2007 Census of Governments|date=November 2012|pages=89–97|publisher=United States Census Bureau|url=|ref={{harvid|Census|2007}}}} The basic subdivision of Illinois are the 102 counties.{{sfn|Census|2007|p=89}} Eighty-five of the 102 counties are in turn divided into townships and precincts.{{sfn|Census|2007|p=89}}WEB,weblink Name Index to Illinois Local Governments, Illinois Regional Archives Depository System, Illinois State Archives, Illinois Secretary of State, November 11, 2013, Municipal governments are the cities, villages, and incorporated towns.{{sfn|Census|2007|p=89}} Some localities possess home rule, which allows them to govern themselves to a certain extent.BOOK, Illinois Politics & Government: The Expanding Metropolitan Frontier, Samuel Kimball, Gove, James Dunlap, Nowlan, 1996, Politics and Governments of the American States, 155–156, University of Nebraska Press, 978-0-8032-7014-5, 95046017, Lincoln, {{Google books, 9JFP49qn_wUC, PA156, yes, |ref=harv}}


Party balance

File:Downtown Springfield.JPG|thumb|Illinois State CapitolIllinois State CapitolIllinois is a Democratic stronghold, and it is considered one of the most Democratic states in the US.WEB, McClelland, Edward,weblink Illinois: The Most Democratic State, NBC Chicago, August 4, 2011, December 29, 2016, Historically, Illinois was a political swing state, with near-parity existing between the Republican and the Democratic parties. However, in recent elections, the Democratic Party has gained ground, and Illinois has come to be seen as a solid "blue" state in presidential campaigns.WEB,weblink Suburb shift turns state blue / The Christian Science Monitor,, July 16, 2004, February 7, 2011, WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, August 27, 2011, Chicgao's [sic] dominance puts Illinois solidly in 'blue-state' America. – Chicago Tribune (Chicago, IL),, November 8, 2004, February 7, 2011, Votes from Chicago and most of Cook County have long been strongly Democratic. However, the "collar counties" (the suburbs surrounding Chicago's Cook County, Illinois), can be seen as moderate voting districts.BOOK, Governor Richard Ogilvie: in the interest of the state, Pensoneau, Taylor, 1997, Southern Illinois University Press, 978-0-8093-2148-3, 314,weblink September 23, 2009, BOOK, Patchwork Nation: Sectionalism and Political Change in American Politics, Gimpel, James G., Jason E. Schuknecht, 2004, University of Michigan Press, 978-0-472-03030-9, 488,weblink September 23, 2009, College towns like Carbondale, Champaign, and Normal also lean Democratic.Republicans continue to prevail in the outlying Chicago exurban areas, as well as rural northern and central Illinois; Republican support is also strong in southern Illinois, outside of East St. Louis. From 1920 until 1972, Illinois was carried by the victor of each of these 14 presidential elections.Meet the New Bellwether States: Ohio and Nevada – Smart Politics {{Webarchive|url= |date=July 16, 2015 }}. Retrieved on July 21, 2013. In fact, the state was long seen as a national bellwether,Illinois as a bellwether: So what?. Retrieved on July 21, 2013. supporting the winner in every election in the 20th century, except for 1916 and 1976. By contrast, Illinois has trended more toward the Democratic party, and has voted for their presidential candidates in the last six elections; in 2000, George W. Bush became the first Republican to win the presidency without carrying either Illinois or Vermont. Local politician and Chicago resident Barack Obama easily won the state's 21 electoral votes in 2008, with 61.9% of the vote. In 2010, incumbent Governor Pat Quinn was re-elected with 47% of the vote, while Republican Mark Kirk was elected to the Senate with 48% of the vote. In 2012, President Obama easily carried Illinois again, with 58% to Republican candidate Mitt Romney's 41%. In 2014, Republican Bruce Rauner defeated Governor Quinn 50% to 46% to become Illinois's first Republican governor in 12 years after being sworn in on January 12, 2015, while Democratic Senator Dick Durbin was re-elected with 53% of the vote. In 2016, Hillary Clinton carried Illinois with 55% of the vote, and Tammy Duckworth defeated incumbent Mark Kirk 54% to 40%. George W. Bush and Donald Trump are the only Republican presidential candidates to win the US Presidency without carrying either Illinois or Vermont. In 2018, Democrat JB Pritzker defeated the incumbent Bruce Rauner for the governorship with 54% of the vote

History of corruption

Politics in the state have been infamous for highly visible corruption cases, as well as for crusading reformers, such as governors Adlai Stevenson and James R. Thompson. In 2006, former Governor George Ryan was convicted of racketeering and bribery, leading to a six-and-a-half-year prison sentence. In 2008, then-Governor Rod Blagojevich was served with a criminal complaint on corruption charges, stemming from allegations that he conspired to sell the vacated Senate seat left by President Barack Obama to the highest bidder. Subsequently, on December 7, 2011, Rod Blagojevich was sentenced to 14 years in prison for those charges, as well as perjury while testifying during the case, totaling 18 convictions. Blagojevich was impeached and convicted by the legislature, resulting in his removal from office. In the late 20th century, Congressman Dan Rostenkowski was imprisoned for mail fraud; former governor and federal judge Otto Kerner, Jr. was imprisoned for bribery; Secretary of State Paul Powell was investigated and found to have gained great wealth through bribes, and State Auditor of Public Accounts (Comptroller) Orville Hodge was imprisoned for embezzlement. In 1912, William Lorimer, the GOP boss of Chicago, was expelled from the U.S. Senate for bribery and in 1921, Governor Len Small was found to have defrauded the state of a million dollars.BOOK, Grafters and Goo Goos: corruption and reform in Chicago, 1833–2003, Merriner, James L., 2004, Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale, 978-0-8093-2571-9, 52720998,

U.S. Presidential Elections

Illinois has shown a strong presence in presidential elections. Three presidents have claimed Illinois as their political base when running for president: Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and most recently Barack Obama. Lincoln was born in Kentucky, but he moved to Illinois at age 21. He served in the General Assembly and represented the 7th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives before his election to the presidency in 1860. Ulysses S. Grant was born in Ohio and had a military career that precluded settling down, but on the eve of the Civil War and approaching middle age, he moved to Illinois and thus utilized the state as his home and political base when running for President. Barack Obama was born in Hawaii and made Illinois his home after graduating from law school, and later represented Illinois in the U.S. Senate. He then became president in 2008, running as a candidate from his Illinois base.Ronald Reagan was born in Illinois, in the city of Tampico, raised in Dixon, Illinois, and educated at Eureka College, outside Peoria. Reagan later moved to California during his young adulthood. He then became an actor, and later became California's Governor before being elected president.Hillary Clinton was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago and became the first (and thus far only) woman to represent a major political party in the general election of the U.S. presidency. Clinton ran from a platform based in New York State.

African-American U.S. senators

Nine African-Americans have served as members of the United States Senate. Three of them have represented Illinois, the most of any single state: Carol Moseley-Braun, Barack Obama,WEB,weblink U.S. Senate: Art & History Home,, February 7, 2011, and Roland Burris, who was appointed to replace Obama after his election to the presidency. Moseley-Braun was the first African-American woman to become a U.S. Senator.

Political families

Three families from Illinois have played particularly prominent roles in the Democratic Party, gaining both statewide and national fame.


The Stevenson family, initially rooted in central Illinois and later based in the Chicago metropolitan area, has provided four generations of Illinois officeholders.


The Daley family's powerbase was in Chicago.


The Pritzker family is based in Chicago and have played important roles both in the private and public sectors.


Illinois State Board of education

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) is autonomous of the governor and the state legislature, and administers public education in the state. Local municipalities and their respective school districts operate individual public schools, but the ISBE audits performance of public schools with the Illinois School Report Card. The ISBE also makes recommendations to state leaders concerning education spending and policies.

Primary and secondary schools

{{see also|List of school districts in Illinois|List of high schools in Illinois}}Education is compulsory from ages 7 to 17 in Illinois. Schools are commonly, but not exclusively, divided into three tiers of primary and secondary education: elementary school, middle school or junior high school, and high school. District territories are often complex in structure. Many areas in the state are actually located in two school districts—one for high school, the other for elementary and middle schools. And such districts do not necessarily share boundaries. A given high school may have several elementary districts that feed into it, yet some of those feeder districts may themselves feed into multiple high school districts.

Colleges and universities

File:MainLibrary Urbana Illinois 4582.jpg|thumb|right|upright=1.15|The Main Library of the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign is home to the Rare Book & Manuscript Library.]]Using the criterion established by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, there are eleven "National Universities" in the state. {{As of|2010|8|19}}, six of these rank in the "first tier" (that is, the top quartile) among the top 500 National Universities in the United States, as determined by the U.S. News & World Report rankings: the University of Chicago (3), Northwestern University (10), the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (41), Loyola University Chicago (89), the Illinois Institute of Technology (108), DePaul University (123), University of Illinois at Chicago (129), Illinois State University (149), Southern Illinois University Carbondale (153), and Northern Illinois University (194).WEB,weblink Best Colleges 2010 – National Universities Rankings, August 19, 2009, May 31, 2016, U.S. News & World Report, The University of Chicago is continuously ranked as one of the world's top ten universities on various independent university rankings, and its Booth School of Business, along with Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management consistently rank within the top 5 graduate business schools in the country and top 10 globally. The University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign is often ranked among the best engineering schools in the world and in United States.Illinois also has more than 20 additional accredited four-year universities, both public and private, and dozens of small liberal arts colleges across the state. Additionally, Illinois supports 49 public community colleges in the Illinois Community College System.



{{see also|List of airports in Illinois|List of Illinois Routes|List of Illinois railroads|Category:Illinois waterways}}Because of its central location and its proximity to the Rust Belt and Grain Belt, Illinois is a national crossroads for air, auto, rail, and truck traffic.


File:Champaign Airport.jpg|thumb|right|University of Illinois Willard AirportUniversity of Illinois Willard AirportFrom 1962 until 1998, Chicago's O'Hare International Airport (ORD) was the busiest airport in the world, measured both in terms of total flights and passengers. While it was surpassed by Atlanta's Hartsfield in 1998 (as Chicago splits its air traffic between O'Hare and Midway airports, while Atlanta only uses one airport), with 59.3 million domestic passengers annually, along with 11.4 million international passengers in 2008,WEB, O'Hare International Airport Activity Statistics,weblink City of Chicago:, March 27, 2009, April 10, 2009, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 1, 2010, mdy-all, O'Hare consistently remains one of the two or three busiest airports globally, and in some years still ranks number one in total flights. It is a major hub for both United Airlines and American Airlines, and a major airport expansion project is currently underway. Midway Airport (MDW), which had been the busiest airport in the world at one point until it was supplanted by O'Hare as the busiest airport in 1962, is now the secondary airport in the Chicago metropolitan area and still ranks as one of the nation's busiest airports. Midway is a major hub for Southwest Airlines and services many other carriers as well. Midway served 17.3 million domestic and international passengers in 2008.WEB, Midway Airport Activity Statistics,weblink, City of Chicago, January 30, 2009, April 10, 2009, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 1, 2010, mdy-all, File:Concourse B, Chicago O'Hare airport.jpg|thumb|right|Inside Chicago O’Hare Airport ]]


(File:Wikipedia Map Final Draft.pdf|thumb|Illinois major rail network)Illinois has an extensive passenger and freight rail transportation network. Chicago is a national Amtrak hub and in-state passengers are served by Amtrak's Illinois Service, featuring the Chicago to Carbondale Illini and Saluki, the Chicago to Quincy Carl Sandburg and Illinois Zephyr, and the Chicago to St. Louis Lincoln Service. Currently there is trackwork on the Chicago–St. Louis line to bring the maximum speed up to {{convert|110|mph|abbr=on}}, which would reduce the trip time by an hour and a half. Nearly every North American railway meets at Chicago, making it the largest and most active rail hub in the country. Extensive commuter rail is provided in the city proper and some immediate suburbs by the Chicago Transit Authority's 'L' system. One of the largest suburban commuter rail system in the United States, operated by Metra, uses existing rail lines to provide direct commuter rail access for hundreds of suburbs to the city and beyond.In addition to the state's rail lines, the Mississippi River and Illinois River provide major transportation routes for the state's agricultural interests. Lake Michigan gives Illinois access to the Atlantic Ocean by way of the Saint Lawrence Seaway.

Interstate highway system

The Interstate Highways in Illinois are all segments of the Interstate Highway System that are owned and maintained by the U.S. state of Illinois.WEB,weblink Interstate Frequently Asked Questions - 50th Anniversary - Interstate System - Highway History - Federal Highway Administration,, 2019-05-03, Illinois has the distinction of having the most primary (two-digit) interstates pass through it among all the 50 states with 13. Illinois also ranks third among the fifty states with the most interstate mileage, coming in after California and Texas, which are much bigger states in area.WEB,weblink Interstates by State, Interstate-Guide, February 2, 2016, February 27, 2016, Major U.S. Interstate highways crossing the state include: Interstate 24 (I-24), I-39, I-41, I-55, I-57, I-64, I-70, I-72, I-74, I-80, I-88, I-90, and I-94.

U.S. highway system

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is responsible for maintaining the U.S Highways in Illinois. The system in Illinois consists of 21 primary highways.Among the U.S. highways that pass through the state, the primary ones are: US 6, US 12, US 14, US 20, US 24, US 30, US 34, US 36, US 40, US 41, US 45, US 50, US 51, US 52, US 54, US 60, US 62, and US 67.


File:IllinoisLicensePlates.jpg|Standard license plate introduced in 2017File:Illinois 2002 series passenger plate sample 000 0000.gif|Standard license plate 2001 to 2016File:1987-Illinois-license-plate.png|Illinois license plate design used throughout the 1980s and 1990s, displaying the Land of Lincoln slogan that has been featured on the state's plates since 1954

See also



Further reading

  • BOOK, Illinois: its history & legacy, Bridges, Roger D., Davis, Rodney O., 1984, River City Publishers, St. Louis, 978-0-933150-86-7, 11814096,
  • BOOK, The era of the Civil War, 1848–1870, Cole, Arthur Charles, 1987, 1919, University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 978-0-252-01339-3, 14130434,
  • BOOK, Davis, James E., Frontier Illinois, 1998, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, 978-0-253-33423-7, 39182546,
  • BOOK, Grossman, James R., Keating, Ann Durkin, Reiff, Janice L., Electronic Encyclopedia of Chicago, 2005, 2004, Online, Chicago History Museum, Chicago Historical Society, Newberry Library, Chicago, 978-0-226-31015-2,weblink January 28, 2009, 60342627,
  • BOOK, Illinois literature: the nineteenth century, Hallwas, John E., 1986, Illinois Heritage Press, Macomb, 14228886,
  • BOOK, Howard, Robert P., Illinois; a history of the Prairie State, 1972, W. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co, Grand Rapids, 978-0-8028-7025-4, 495362,weblink
  • BOOK, Jensen, Richard E., Illinois: a history, 2001, University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 978-0-252-07021-1, 46769728,
  • BOOK, Keiser, John H., Building for the centuries: Illinois, 1865 to 1898, 1977, University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 978-0-252-00617-3, 2798051,
  • BOOK, Illinois; History, government, geography, Kilduff, Dorrell, Pygman, C. H., 1962, Follett, Chicago, 5223888,
  • BOOK, Kleppner, Paul, Political atlas of Illinois, 1988, Northern Illinois University Press, DeKalb, 978-0-87580-136-0, 16755435,
  • BOOK, Meyer, Douglas K., Making the heartland quilt: a geographical history of settlement and migration in early-nineteenth-century Illinois, 2000, Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale, 978-0-585-37905-0,weblink 48139026,
  • BOOK, Illinois Politics: A Citizen's Guide, Nowlan, James D., Gove, Samuel K., Winkel, Richard J., 2010, University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 978-0-252-07702-9,
  • BOOK, Sutton, Robert P., The Prairie State; a documentary history of Illinois, 1976, Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, 978-0-8028-1651-1, 2603998,weblink
  • BOOK, Walton, Clyde C., An Illinois reader, 1970, Northern Illinois University Press, DeKalb, 978-0-87580-014-1, 89905,weblink
  • BOOK, Works Progress Administration, Works Progress Administration, The WPA guide to Illinois: the Federal Writers' Project guide to 1930s Illinois, 1983, 1939, Pantheon Books, New York, 978-0-394-72195-8, 239788752,

External links

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