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Illinois

State nickname: Land of Lincoln, The Prairie State
Other U.S. States
Capital Springfield
Largest city Chicago
Governor Rod Blagojevich
Official languages English
Area 149,998 kmē (25th)
 - Land 143,968 kmē
 - Water 6,030 kmē (4.0%)
Population (2000)
 - Population 12,419,293 (5th)
 - Density 86.27 /kmē (11th)
Admission into Union
 - Date December 3, 1818
 - Order 21st
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Latitude 36°58'N to 42°30'N
Longitude 87°30'W to 91°30'W
Width 340 km
Length 629 km
Elevation
 - Highest 376 m
 - Mean 182 m
 - Lowest 85 m
Abbreviations
 - USPS IL
 - ISO 3166-2 US-IL
Web site www.illinois.gov

Illinois (pronounced [ˌɪləˈnɔɪ] or occasionally [ˌɪləˈnɔɪz]) constitutes the 21st state of the United States, located in the former Northwest Territory. Its name was given by the state's French explorers after the indigenous Illiniwek people, a consortium of Algonquin tribes that thrived in the area. The word Illiniwek means simply "the people".

The capital of Illinois is Springfield while its largest city is Chicago, along the waterfront of Lake Michigan. Most of the state's population resides in Chicago and its suburbs. The U.S. postal abbreviation for the state is IL.

The USS Illinois was named in honor of this state.

History

Pre-Columbian

Cahokia, the urban center of the pre-Columbian Mississippian culture, was located near present-day Collinsville, Illinois. That civilization vanished circa 1400-1500 for unknown reasons. The next major power in the region was the Illiniwek Confederation, a political alliance among several tribes. The Illiniwek gave Illinois its name. The Illini suffered in the seventeenth century as Iroquois expansion forced them to compete with several tribes for land. The Ilini were replaced in Illinois by the Potawatomi, Miami, Sauk, and other tribes.

European exploration

French explorers Jacques Marquette,S.J. and Louis Joliet explored the Illinois River in 1673. As a result of their exploration, Illinois was part of the French empire until 1763, when it passed to the British. The area was ceded to the new United States in 1783 and became part of the Northwest Territory.

The 1800s

The Illinois-Wabash Company was an early claimant to much of Illinois. The Illinois Territory was created on February 3, 1809. In 1818, Illinois became the 21st U.S. state. Early U.S. settlement began in the south part of the state and quickly spread northward, driving out the native residents. With the 1832 Black Hawk War, the last native tribes were driven out of northern Illinois.

Illinois is known as the "Land of Lincoln" because it is here that the 16th President spent his formative years. Chicago gained prominence as a canal port after 1848, and as a rail hub soon afterward. By 1857, Chicago was Illinois' largest city (see History of Chicago).

The Civil War

During the Civil War, over 250,000 Illinois men served in the Union Army, more than any other northern state except New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio. Beginning with President Lincoln's first call for troops and continuing throughout the war, Illinois mustered 150 infantry regiments (see Illinois in the Civil War), which were numbered from the 7th IL to the 156th IL. Seventeen cavalry regiments were also mustered, as well as two light artillery regiments.

Government

The sample version of the current Illinois license plate introduced in 2001.

The state government of Illinois is modeled after the federal government with adaptations originating from traditions cultivated during the state's frontier era. As codified in the state constitution, there are three branches of government: executive, legislative and judicial. The executive branch is led by the Governor of Illinois. Legislative functions are given to the Illinois General Assembly, comprised of the 118-member Illinois State House of Representatives and the 59-member Illinois State Senate. The judiciary is comprised of the state supreme court, which oversees the lower appelate courts and circuit courts.

Geography

See List of Illinois counties

It is in the north-central U.S. and borders on Lake Michigan. Surrounding states are Wisconsin to the north, Iowa and Missouri to the west, Kentucky to the south, and Indiana to the east. Illinois also borders Michigan, but only via a water boundary in Lake Michigan.

Illinois has three major geographical divisions. The first is Chicagoland, including the city of Chicago, its suburbs, and the adjoining exurban area into which the metropolis is expanding. This region includes a few counties in Indiana and Wisconsin and streches across much of the Northern Illinois toward the Iowa border, generally along and north of Interstate 80. This region is cosmopolitan, densely populated, industrialized, and settled by a variety of ethnic groups. The city of Chicago is heavily Democratic. While this tendency has historically been balanced by Republican voters in the suburbs, Democrats have significantly increased their suburban support in the past decade.

Southward and westward, the second major division is Central Illinois, an area of rolling hills and flat prairie. Known as the Land of Lincoln, it is characterized by small towns and mid-sized cities. Agriculture, particularly corn and soybeans, figures prominently. Major cities include famously average Peoria, Springfield (the state capital), and Champaign-Urbana (home of the University of Illinois). This region's largely rural character helps to sustain a heavily Republican voting pattern and widespread antipathy toward Chicago.

The third division is Southern Illinois, or Little Egypt, distinguished from the other two by its warmer climate, different mix of crops (including some cotton farming in the past), more rugged unglaciated topography, coal mining, and proximity to the juncture of the Mississippi River and Ohio River. The combination of coal mining and industrialization, especially in the region around Saint Louis, Missouri, has caused the region to lean Democratic politically. This division comprises the area generally along and south of Interstate 70.

McLean County, is the largest county in terms of land area, at 1,184 sq mi. while Cook County is the largest county in terms of population, at 5,327,777. Both figures are as of 2004.

In extreme northwestern Illinois the Driftless Area, a region of unglaciated and therefore comparatively higher and more rugged topography, occupies a small part of the state.

Economy

The 2003 total gross state product for Illinois was $499 billion, placing it 5th in the nation. The per capita income was $32,965.

Illinois' agricultural outputs are corn, soybeans, hogs, cattle, dairy products and wheat. Its industrial outputs are machinery, food processing, electrical equipment, chemical products, publishing, fabricated metal products, transportation equipment, petroleum and coal.

Demographics

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, as of 2003, the population of Illinois was 12,653,544. At the northern edge of the state on Lake Michigan lies Chicago, the nation's third largest city. More than half of the population of Illinois lives in and around Chicago, the leading industrial and transportation center in the region. The rest of the population lives in the smaller cities and on the farms that dot the state's gently rolling plains.

Racially, the state is:

The top 5 ancestry groups in Illinois are German (19.6%), African American (15.1%), Irish (12.2%), Mexican (9.2%), Polish (7.5%).

7.1% of Illinois' population were reported as under 5, 26.1% under 18, and 12.1% were 65 or older. Females made up approximately 51% of the population.

Religion

Unlike the other Midwestern states, Illinois is not overwhelmingly Protestant--only about half of the people profess that faith. Roman Catholics (who are predominant in and around Chicago) account for one-third of the population.

The religious affiliations of the people of Illinois are:

The three largest Protestant denominations in Illinois are: Baptist (15% of total state population), Lutheran (8%), Methodist (8%).

Important cities and towns

Illinois, showing major cities and roads Chicago

See complete listing here...

Counties of Illinois

Education

Illinois State Board of Education

The Illinois State Board of Education or ISBE, autonomous of the governor and the state legislature, 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 an annual school report card. The ISBE also makes recommendations to state leaders concerning education spending and policies.

There is current debate as to the role of the ISBE and whether or not its autonomous relationship with the governor and the state legislature is appropriate. In 2002, the Office of the Governor proposed the creation of a monolithic statewide department of education to replace the ISBE. However, direct control of the new department would fall under the state governor's jurisdiction. The structure would mimic the system employed by the Hawaii State Department of Education, which has no local school districts. Opponents to the proposal argue that local communities would lose control over what their children would learn in public schools and the means by which those public schools operate.

Primary and secondary schools

Education is compulsory from kindergarten through the twelfth grade in Illinois, 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. In some cases, elementary, middle and junior high schools of a single district feed into high schools in another district.

See List of school districts in Illinois for a listing of all school districts, by county.
See List of high schools in Illinois for a partial list of high schools.

Colleges and universities

While many students enter the military or join the workforce directly from high school, students have the option of applying to colleges and universities in Illinois. Notable Illinois institutions of higher education include Loyola University Chicago, Northwestern University, University of Chicago and the several branches of the University of Illinois. Illinois is also home to 49 colleges in the Illinois community college system.

List of colleges and universities

Professional sports teams

People

State symbols

The Cardinal is the state bird of Illinois
This page about Illinois includes information from a Wikipedia article.
Additional articles about Illinois
News stories about Illinois
External links for Illinois
Videos for Illinois
Wikis about Illinois
Discussion Groups about Illinois
Blogs about Illinois
Images of Illinois

Illinois is also home to 49 colleges in the Illinois community college system. Also see List of current NBA players#Phoenix Suns. Notable Illinois institutions of higher education include Loyola University Chicago, Northwestern University, University of Chicago and the several branches of the University of Illinois. Bench. While many students enter the military or join the workforce directly from high school, students have the option of applying to colleges and universities in Illinois. Starting Lineup. In some cases, elementary, middle and junior high schools of a single district feed into high schools in another district. He even traveled to Japan in 1991, when the Suns kicked off the 1991-1992 NBA season there with 2 games against the Jazz.

District territories are often complex in structure. It is worthy to note that every single Suns game in history has been covered both on local Phoenix TV and radio by the legendary broadcaster, Al McCoy, who has battled every kind of situation imaginable to keep doing his job every time his beloved Suns play. Education is compulsory from kindergarten through the twelfth grade in Illinois, commonly but not exclusively divided into three tiers of primary and secondary education: elementary school, middle school or junior high school and high school. The Suns looked to bolster their defense during the summer. Opponents to the proposal argue that local communities would lose control over what their children would learn in public schools and the means by which those public schools operate. The Spurs, twice holding the Suns to under 100 points, won the series 4-1, ending Phoenix's outstanding season. The structure would mimic the system employed by the Hawaii State Department of Education, which has no local school districts. In the Western Conference Finals, they played the San Antonio Spurs, who had the league's best defense.

However, direct control of the new department would fall under the state governor's jurisdiction. The Suns swept the Memphis Grizzlies 4-0 and defeated the number four seeded Dallas Mavericks in the second round 4-2. In 2002, the Office of the Governor proposed the creation of a monolithic statewide department of education to replace the ISBE. In the 2005 playoffs, Phoenix was seeded number one in the western conference, and because it owned the NBA's best record, was guarenteed home-court advantage throughout the playoffs. There is current debate as to the role of the ISBE and whether or not its autonomous relationship with the governor and the state legislature is appropriate. Shawn Marion, Diana Taurasi of the Phoenix Mercury, and former Suns player Dan Majerle won the Shooting Stars contest, Steve Nash won the Skills contest, Quentin Richardson and Joe Johnson both competed in the 3-Point Contest (with Richardson winning), Amare Stoudemire came in second in the Slam Dunk contest, and Nash, Marion, and Stoudemire all played in the game itself. The ISBE also makes recommendations to state leaders concerning education spending and policies. The Suns also had a very large contingency of players competing in the NBA All-Star Game and the events that go with it.

Local municipalities and their respective school districts operate individual public schools but the ISBE audits performance of public schools with an annual school report card. The Suns ended the 04-05 season as the team with the most points per game (110.4), the most threes per game (9.7), and the best three point percentage to match (39.3). The Illinois State Board of Education or ISBE, autonomous of the governor and the state legislature, administers public education in the state. The key to their success was their style of play, which heavily relied on the fast break, which is very uncommon in the current era of the NBA. See complete listing here... The team was not expected to do nearly as well at the beginning of the season. The three largest Protestant denominations in Illinois are: Baptist (15% of total state population), Lutheran (8%), Methodist (8%). Nash was voted the NBA MVP for the 2004-2005 season after the regular season ended.

The religious affiliations of the people of Illinois are:. The team was led by the MVP-caliber play of point guard Steve Nash, acquired in the offseason, as well as returning players Amare Stoudemire and Shawn Marion. Roman Catholics (who are predominant in and around Chicago) account for one-third of the population. This ties their franchise best record for the most wins, back when Barkley was first traded to the team. Unlike the other Midwestern states, Illinois is not overwhelmingly Protestant--only about half of the people profess that faith. The 2004-05 season has been very successful, with the Suns finishing 62-20, the best record in the NBA. Females made up approximately 51% of the population. The sale also included the Phoenix Mercury and Arizona Rattlers.

7.1% of Illinois' population were reported as under 5, 26.1% under 18, and 12.1% were 65 or older. In April 2004, the Phoenix Suns were sold to an investment group headed by tycoon Robert Sarver for $401 million dollars. The top 5 ancestry groups in Illinois are German (19.6%), African American (15.1%), Irish (12.2%), Mexican (9.2%), Polish (7.5%). After the trade, the Suns continued to struggle, but the trade opened up opportunities for some of the Sun's young rising stars. Racially, the state is:. Convinced that the team was going nowhere, the Suns made a blockbuster mid-season trade involving Stephon Marbury and Penny Hardaway. The rest of the population lives in the smaller cities and on the farms that dot the state's gently rolling plains. Following one of the worst preseasons in Suns franchise history, the Suns got off to a rocky start in the regular season.

More than half of the population of Illinois lives in and around Chicago, the leading industrial and transportation center in the region. In the 2003-2004 season, the Suns again found themselves out of the playoffs. At the northern edge of the state on Lake Michigan lies Chicago, the nation's third largest city. He was named the NBA Rookie of the Year for the 2002-2003 season, during which the Suns posted a record of 44-38 and returned to the playoffs. Census Bureau, as of 2003, the population of Illinois was 12,653,544. His size and athleticism, along with a strong work ethic, have many anticipating him to join the ranks of Tracy McGrady, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Garnett as the best NBA players to have jumped from high school to the pro ranks. According to the U.S. The 2002-2003 saw the emergence of Amare Stoudemire, who many have likened to future Hall of Fame power forward Karl Malone.

Its industrial outputs are machinery, food processing, electrical equipment, chemical products, publishing, fabricated metal products, transportation equipment, petroleum and coal. Lottery-bound, however, the Suns were able to draft Amare Stoudemire. Illinois' agricultural outputs are corn, soybeans, hogs, cattle, dairy products and wheat. That season marked the trade of Jason Kidd, partly due to a publicized domestic violence account where he slapped his wife, to the New Jersey Nets for Stephon Marbury. The per capita income was $32,965. The Suns kept making the playoffs until the 2001-2002 campaign, when they fell short for the first time in 14 years. The 2003 total gross state product for Illinois was $499 billion, placing it 5th in the nation. While this was going on, Johnson retired, but he attempted a comeback to try to help the Suns during the 2000 playoffs.

In extreme northwestern Illinois the Driftless Area, a region of unglaciated and therefore comparatively higher and more rugged topography, occupies a small part of the state. Barkley was traded and the Suns began a downward spiral. Both figures are as of 2004. He was also present to see his number retired in 2004. while Cook County is the largest county in terms of population, at 5,327,777. Their feud has since been repaired, however, and Barkley appeared at a Suns home game in 2003. McLean County, is the largest county in terms of land area, at 1,184 sq mi. In 1996, Barkley's relationship with Colangelo grew sour and they trashed each other publicly.

This division comprises the area generally along and south of Interstate 70. The next couple of years saw the Suns waste 3 to 1 leads against the Houston Rockets and get eliminated by them both years. The combination of coal mining and industrialization, especially in the region around Saint Louis, Missouri, has caused the region to lean Democratic politically. They won 62 games that year, advancing to the NBA finals for the second time ever, where they lost in 6 games to the Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen-led Bulls. The third division is Southern Illinois, or Little Egypt, distinguished from the other two by its warmer climate, different mix of crops (including some cotton farming in the past), more rugged unglaciated topography, coal mining, and proximity to the juncture of the Mississippi River and Ohio River. Former Boston Celtics member Danny Ainge was added to the mix and the Suns had a dynamic team that would be hard to stop. This region's largely rural character helps to sustain a heavily Republican voting pattern and widespread antipathy toward Chicago. Hornacek was traded to Philadelphia in 1992 along with Andrew Lang for the flamboyant but productive Charles Barkley, probably a future Hall of Famer himself.

Major cities include famously average Peoria, Springfield (the state capital), and Champaign-Urbana (home of the University of Illinois). Kurt Rambis was added from the Charlotte Hornets in 1989, and the team caused a shocking upset by beating the Los Angeles Lakers in 5 games that season before falling to the Portland Trail Blazers in the western conference finals. Agriculture, particularly corn and soybeans, figures prominently. In 1988, Tom Chambers came over from Seattle, Jeff Hornacek was signed, Dan Majerle was drafted with the 14th pick in the draft, which they obtained from Cleveland in the Kevin Johnson trade, and the team began a 13 year playoff streak. Known as the Land of Lincoln, it is characterized by small towns and mid-sized cities. It was in this trade that the Suns gave up popular power forward Larry Nance. Southward and westward, the second major division is Central Illinois, an area of rolling hills and flat prairie. That all began to change in 1987, though, with the acquisition through a trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers of Kevin Johnson and Mark West.

While this tendency has historically been balanced by Republican voters in the suburbs, Democrats have significantly increased their suburban support in the past decade. The next few years for the Suns weren't as good, as a drug scandal rocked the organization in 1987, and the franchise was having a hard time putting wins together. The city of Chicago is heavily Democratic. Game 5 was a triple-overtime classic that is considered by many to be the greatest game in NBA history. This region is cosmopolitan, densely populated, industrialized, and settled by a variety of ethnic groups. They finished the season with 42 wins and 40 losses, but shockingly they beat the defending NBA champion Golden State Warriors in the playoffs and went on to play the Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals, giving the Celtics a tough battle before falling in 6 games. This region includes a few counties in Indiana and Wisconsin and streches across much of the Northern Illinois toward the Iowa border, generally along and north of Interstate 80. In 1976, the year the movie Rocky was released, the Suns proved to be a real-life, basketball version of Rocky.

The first is Chicagoland, including the city of Chicago, its suburbs, and the adjoining exurban area into which the metropolis is expanding. The brainchild of former Chicago Bulls assistant coach and Arizona sports magnate Jerry Colangelo, the Suns in the 1970s had mild success, combining the talents of such players like Dick Van Arsdale (The Original Sun), his twin brother Tom Van Arsdale, Hall of Famer Connie Hawkins, Len "Truck" Robinson, Alvan Adams, and center Neal Walk, who sadly, in 1974 had a car accident that left him paralyzed. Illinois has three major geographical divisions. The Suns came to the Valley of the Sun in 1968, but they have yet to win an NBA Title. They began with a victory over the Seattle SuperSonics on opening night. Illinois also borders Michigan, but only via a water boundary in Lake Michigan. The Phoenix Suns are a National Basketball Association team based in Phoenix, Arizona. and borders on Lake Michigan. Surrounding states are Wisconsin to the north, Iowa and Missouri to the west, Kentucky to the south, and Indiana to the east. Amare Stoudemire.

It is in the north-central U.S. Quentin Richardson. See List of Illinois counties. Steve Nash. The judiciary is comprised of the state supreme court, which oversees the lower appelate courts and circuit courts. Shawn Marion. Legislative functions are given to the Illinois General Assembly, comprised of the 118-member Illinois State House of Representatives and the 59-member Illinois State Senate. Joe Johnson.

The executive branch is led by the Governor of Illinois. Cotton Fitzsimmons (coach). As codified in the state constitution, there are three branches of government: executive, legislative and judicial. Joe Proski (trainer). The state government of Illinois is modeled after the federal government with adaptations originating from traditions cultivated during the state's frontier era. 44 Paul Westphal. Seventeen cavalry regiments were also mustered, as well as two light artillery regiments. 42 Connie Hawkins.

Beginning with President Lincoln's first call for troops and continuing throughout the war, Illinois mustered 150 infantry regiments (see Illinois in the Civil War), which were numbered from the 7th IL to the 156th IL. 34 Charles Barkley. During the Civil War, over 250,000 Illinois men served in the Union Army, more than any other northern state except New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio. 33 Alvan Adams. By 1857, Chicago was Illinois' largest city (see History of Chicago). 24 Tom Chambers. Chicago gained prominence as a canal port after 1848, and as a rail hub soon afterward. 9 Dan Majerle.

Illinois is known as the "Land of Lincoln" because it is here that the 16th President spent his formative years. 7 Kevin Johnson. With the 1832 Black Hawk War, the last native tribes were driven out of northern Illinois. 6 Walter Davis. settlement began in the south part of the state and quickly spread northward, driving out the native residents. 5 Dick Van Arsdale. Early U.S. Stephon Marbury.

state. Danny Ainge. In 1818, Illinois became the 21st U.S. Cedric Ceballos. The Illinois Territory was created on February 3, 1809. Larry Nance. The Illinois-Wabash Company was an early claimant to much of Illinois. Kevin Johnson.

The area was ceded to the new United States in 1783 and became part of the Northwest Territory. Jason Kidd. As a result of their exploration, Illinois was part of the French empire until 1763, when it passed to the British. Neal Walk. and Louis Joliet explored the Illinois River in 1673. Jeff Hornacek. French explorers Jacques Marquette,S.J. Anfernee Hardaway.

The Ilini were replaced in Illinois by the Potawatomi, Miami, Sauk, and other tribes. Rex Chapman. The Illini suffered in the seventeenth century as Iroquois expansion forced them to compete with several tribes for land. Charles Barkley. The Illiniwek gave Illinois its name. Dan Majerle. The next major power in the region was the Illiniwek Confederation, a political alliance among several tribes. Jerry Colangelo.

That civilization vanished circa 1400-1500 for unknown reasons. Connie Hawkins. Cahokia, the urban center of the pre-Columbian Mississippian culture, was located near present-day Collinsville, Illinois. C - #43 Jake Voskuhl (UConn). The USS Illinois was named in honor of this state. SF - #17 Paul Shirley (Iowa State). postal abbreviation for the state is IL. F - #46 Bo Outlaw (Houston).

The U.S. PF - #0 Walter McCarty (Kentucky). Most of the state's population resides in Chicago and its suburbs. SG - #21 Jim Jackson (Ohio State). The capital of Illinois is Springfield while its largest city is Chicago, along the waterfront of Lake Michigan. C - #45 Steven Hunter (DePaul). The word Illiniwek means simply "the people". PG - #10 Leandro Barbosa (Brazil).

Its name was given by the state's French explorers after the indigenous Illiniwek people, a consortium of Algonquin tribes that thrived in the area. PF - #32 Amare Stoudemire (Cypress Creek HS, Orlando, Florida). Illinois (pronounced [ˌɪləˈnɔɪ] or occasionally [ˌɪləˈnɔɪz]) constitutes the 21st state of the United States, located in the former Northwest Territory. SF - #31 Shawn Marion (UNLV). State tree: White oak (Quercus alba). SG - #2 Joe Johnson (Arkansas). State snack: Popcorn. SG - #3 Quentin Richardson (DePaul).

State song: "Illinois". PG - #13 Steve Nash (Santa Clara). State slogan: "Land of Lincoln". State prairie grass: Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii). State motto: "State sovereignty, national union".

State mineral: Fluorite. State insect: Monarch butterfly. State fossil: Tully Monster (Tullimonstrum gregarium). State flower: Purple violet (Viola sororia).

State fish: Bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus). State dance: Square dance. State capital: Springfield. State bird: Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis).

State animal: White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus). Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President, is buried in Springfield, Illinois. Ronald Reagan, the 40th President, was born in Tampico, Illinois. Non-Religious – 8%.

Other Religions – 3%. Other Christian – 1%. Roman Catholic – 33%. Protestant – 51%.

1.9% mixed race. 0.2% American Indian. 3.4% Asian. 12.3% Hispanic.

15.1% Black. 67.8% White Non-Hispanic. The Junior United States Senator is Barack Obama (Democrat). Durbin (Democrat).

The Senior United States Senator is Richard J. The Treasurer of Illinois is Judy Baar Topinka (Republican). The Secretary of State of Illinois is Jesse White (Democrat). The Lieutenant Governor of Illinois is Pat Quinn (Democrat).

The Governor of Illinois is Rod Blagojevich (Democrat).

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