Welcome to Illinois
"Land of Lincoln"
Illinois is often characterized by its Midwestern, "middle-American" values. But it's not as homogenous and average as that might imply. In fact, Illinois is the most populous and demographically diverse state in the region. That's largely due to its biggest city, Chicago, the third-largest city in the country. Historically, Chicago's landscape has been anything but corn-fed—from political corruption to its Prohibition heyday as an organized crime haven to its legendary blues musicians, the Windy City has a storied and sometimes scandalous reputation (one that continues into the modern era).
Of course, Illinois has more to offer than Chicago. Home to major educational institutions like Northwestern University and a leader in nuclear power development, the state is also more than just the country's second-biggest corn producer. Not incidentally, 40 percent of the ethanol consumed in the U.S. comes from that corn. Illinois is also a crossroads for the transportation industry, given its central location. While some things about Illinois might well be considered "average" (its centrist politics, for example), the "Land of Lincoln"—and the land of Chicago deep-dish pizza—offers plenty of unique charms as well.
State Name: Illinois
State Nickname: "Land of Lincoln," "The Prairie State"
State Motto: "State sovereignty, national union"
Name for Residents: Illinoisan
Time Zone: Central, GMT/UTC -6 / -5 (Daylight Savings Time)
Capital City: Springfield
Date of Statehood: December 3, 1818
Statehood Rank: 21st State
Area: 57,918 square miles (140,998 km²)
Area Rank: 25 of 50
Number of Counties: 102
State Population: 12,901,563 (2008 estimate)
Chicago - 2,853,114 (2008)
Aurora - 171,782 (2008)
Rockford - 157,272 (2008)
Mississippi River - Length: 2,320 mi (3,730 km)
Wabash River - Length: 475 mi (764 km)
Illinois River - Length: 273 mi (439 km)
Highest Point: Charles Mound, 1235 ft (377 m)
Lowest Point: Mississippi River, 279 ft (85 m)
Bordering States and Countries:
Record High Temperature:
July 14, 1954 at East St. Louis
Record Low Temperature:
January 5, 1999 at Congerville
Illinois State Flag
Illinois State Seal
Illinois Location Map
|Author: World Trade Press|