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Located in the Midwestern United States, Illinois is an economically important state of the Union. A major transportation hub, central Illinois is dotted with numerous small industrial cities while agricultural productivity characterizes northern Illinois. In the south can be found natural resources such as timber, coal, and petroleum. Illinois is also home to the O'Hare International Airport, which one of the busiest airport in the world. Ronald Reagan is the only President of the United States to have been born and raised in the state of Illinois. Apart from this, three US Presidents have been elected while residing in the state. These include Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses Grant and Barack Obama.
History of Illinois
Around 10,000-8,000 BC, the Paleo Indians lived in small groups in the area. Over the years, the region was inhabited by people of Woodland and Mississippian cultures. In the year 1680, other French explorers arrived and built a fort at what is today known as Peoria. Subsequently, in the year 1682, a fort was built on Starved Rock in what is today famously known as Starved Rock State Park. With its defeat in the Seven Years' War, France had to surrender all of the Illinois country to Britain.
In the year 1783, the Treaty of Paris extended the boundaries of the United States to include Illinois. In a compromise that followed, Virginia surrendered its hold on Illinois to the newly formed US. On December 3, 1818, Illinois achieved statehood and became the 21st US state. There was a marked improvement in labor conditions in the 20th century and the state's economy began to prosper.
Geography of Illinois
Northern Illinois features city of Chicago and its suburbs. Central Division, the heart of Illinois, is characterized by flat prairies which make up around 90% of the state. Southern Illinois has Shawnee Hills and the Gulf Coastal Plain.
Northern Illinois features city of Chicago and its suburbs. The Heart of Illinois, Central division is dominated by mostly flat prairies which make up around 90% of the state. Southern Illinois has Shawnee Hills and the Gulf Coastal Plain.
Charles Mound is the state’s highest point at 376 meters (1,235 feet) above the sea level. The average temperature in Illinois varies from 87.1 degrees Fahrenheit to 9.8 degrees Fahrenheit.
Travel Destinations in Illinois
Magnificent cities, sandy beaches, rutstic rural areas, majestic mountains, serene lakes and rivers and amazing monuments are just a few attractions of illiniois that attract tourists from all over the world. You will be greeted by towering skyscrapers if you are planning to visit Chicago. Dotted with fabulous shopping centers, resstaurats, and fabulous nightlife, Chicago is a must-visit and so are some other cities like Arlington, Naperville, Rockford etc. If you are a nature lover and are looking for serenity and tranquility then Starved Rock State Park, Anderson Japanese Gardens in Rockford, Shawnee National Forest, Cahokia Mounds, are just a few places that you need to cjeck out. But make sure to visit the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, the capital of Illinois, and enrich your knowlege about the 16th US President and the American Civil War.
Navy Pier, Shedd Aquarium, Cloud Gate, Lincoln Park Zoo, Buffalo Rock State Park, Mississippi Palisades State Park, and Chestnut Mountain are also major points of interest in Illinois.
Transportation in Illinois
- By Air – Chicago's O'Hare International Airport (ORD) is consistently ranked among the world's busiest airports.
- By Train – Amtrak operates Lake Shore Limited, Capitol Limited, City of New Orleans, Texas Eagle, Southwest Chief, and California Zephyr routes through the state.
- By Road – More primary (two-digit) interstate highways pass through Illinois than any other US State.
Education in Illinois
Education in Illinois is compulsory from age 7 until age 17. The state has 11 national universities. The University of Chicago
, Northwestern University
, and the University of Illinois
at Urbana-Champaign are continuously ranked in top 50 American universities. Read more here
Facts about Illinois
- It was the first state to abolish slavery by ratifying the Thirteenth Amendment.
- The world's first Skyscraper, Home Insurance Building, was erected in Chicago.
- The state generates more nuclear power than any other state. More Facts...
Last Updated on: February 22, 2020
Map of Cities in Illinois