Illinois State Geography

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So you want to know about Illinois? Here are some highlights! Also check out the links to other sites about Illinois.

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Key Facts

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Illinois State Facts

Population (1994): 11,752,000 (6th in size)

State size: 56,345 square miles (24th in size)

State Capital: Springfield (named from the Spring Creek where the settlement was built)

Major cities: Aurora, Chicago, Decatur, Evanston, Joliet, Rockford, Skokie

Admission to union: The 21st State

Date entered the union: December 3, 1818

Origin of state name: Named from an Indian word meaning "man".

Nicknames: The Prairie State and the Land of Lincoln

Bordering states: Indiana, Kentucky, Iowa, Missouri and Wisconsin

State bird: Eastern Cardinal

State flower: Violet

State tree: White Oak

Motto: State Sovereignty, National Union


Geographic Landmarks

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The Shawnee National Forest.  


Points of Interest

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Major Industries

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Agriculture is a major industry including corn, soybeans and pigs. Other industries include food processing, fabricated metals, electrical goods, printing and publishing.  


Historical Highlights

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The French first explored the area in 1659. Illinois came under British control in 1763 with the Treaty of Paris. Illinois was initially part of the county of Virginia, but later separated into its own state.  


Population and Culture

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Interesting Tidbits

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Links to other sites about Illinois

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Illinois State Flag

Illinois State Flag


Illinois State Government home page

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