Brief History of Illinois

By | May 19, 2022

Population: 12 869.257 thousand people (2011)
Area: 149998.0 sq. km

In the Midwest of the United States, the state of Illinois is located, which is in 25th place in terms of occupied area. Its capital is Springfield. The largest city in Illinois is Chicago. The state is the main transport hub of the country.

In the central part of Illinois, mainly agricultural enterprises are located. Industrial plants are found in the northeast in Chicago and other smaller cities. The southern lands are rich in natural mineral deposits, including oil and coal. The port of Chicago is connected via the St. Lawrence Seaway to the ports of the Atlantic Ocean and the Great Lakes. Access to the Mississippi River is through the Illinois Waterway. Chicago International Airport is rightfully recognized as one of the busiest ports in the world.

The famous historical monument Cahokia, which consists of 109 mounds, is located near the city of Collinsville. Until the 16th century, this territory was the main city of the Mississippian culture, which disappeared between 1400 and 1500. The state was called the Illinois Confederation, which was a political union between Indian tribes. During the 17-18 centuries, the Illinos tribes suffered heavy losses in internecine wars with the Iroquois and, as a result, were ousted from the territory of the present state. Later they were replaced by Potawatomi, Sauk, Miami and other tribes.

The first explorers of the lands of the future state of Illinois in 1673 were two Frenchmen, Jacques Marquette and Louis Jollier. The Illinois River was studied by Cavalier de La Salle in 1680. Until 1763, this territory was part of New France, later it was conquered by England. In 1778, during the war for independence, the British were expelled from these lands. In 1783, the province became part of the United States and became part of the northwestern lands of the young country. Illinois received its official status in 1787. At the same time, it was divided into districts and began to be massively populated. During the Anglo-American War in 1812, many defensive fortresses were erected in the state.


Population: 152.812 thousand people (2008)
Founded: 1833
Time zone: UTC-6 summer UTC-5
Altitude: 196 m
Zip code: 60403, 60404, 60431-60436

The American city of Joliet is located southwest of Chicago. Joliet is considered the fastest growing city in the state. The city was founded in 1833. This year, Charles Reed erected a small hut on the site of the future village. Nineteen years later, this settlement was given the status of a city. Louis Joliet (French-Canadian explorer) explored the area in 1673. It is also interesting to note that during the exploration of this area, Joliet noted on his map a large clay hill. The first inhabitants developed this deposit. At this place, a city appeared, which was named Rockdale.

Initially, Joliet was a steel city, however, in recent decades, Joliet has gradually turned into a suburb of Chicago. Joliet’s entertainment area includes: Harrah’s casino, a baseball complex, four golf complexes, a cinema called “Rielto Squea Siatr” (one of the ten most beautiful cinemas in the world). The most famous natives of the city include: writer Anne Bannon, actress and singer Nora Bayes, Miss America 1927 Louis Delander, astrophysicist John Houbolt and many others.


Population: 141.853 thousand people (2010)
Area: 92.0 sq. km
Date of foundation: 1831
City status since: 1890
Time zone: UTC-6, summer UTC-5
Altitude: 214 m

In the northern part of the country lies the city of Naperville, founded as a farming community of Naper in the first half of the 19th century. Several families came here first. A year after their settlement, more settlers arrived on the coast of the DuPage River, the number of which exceeded 100 people. The new arrivals were housed at Fort Dearbon. The reason for this was the threat of attack from the Indians. Then, after the completion of construction in Fort Payne, the settlers moved to the village for a permanent place of residence.

In 1857, Naper’s was given a new name and became known as Naperville. It received city status 33 years after this event. With the launch of the railway line in the 1860s, the city began to develop rapidly. Branches of well-known companies in the country have opened within its boundaries. In addition, completely new firms appeared, subsequently increasing their production capacity. Now, modern Naperville bears little resemblance to the rural community it was for a long period. A prosperous and prosperous city is considered one of the best places for comfortable living in the United States.

As early as the mid-1970s, local authorities abolished parking fees to accelerate the growth of the city’s commercial zone. After 10 years, underground parking also became free, which remains to this day. In addition to large companies, retail trade enterprises are doing well in the city, there are many shops, shopping and entertainment complexes, restaurants, cafes. A few years ago, an automobile test track was opened in the city.

In order to preserve the ancient buildings, the museum “Settlement of Naper” was created. Its founder was the Naperville Heritage Society. It included: the reconstructed Fort Payne and several of the oldest structures. The city has three public libraries that occupy leading positions in the ranking. The largest one is on 95th Street. Since 2008, the Independent Film Festival, founded with the support of actress Karen Black, has become an annual event.


Population: 171.782 thousand people (2008)
Area: 102.0 sq. km
Founded: 1834
City status since: 1845
Time zone: UTC-6, summer UTC-5
Altitude: 220 m

The American city of Aurora is located in the northern part of the United States. In addition to the official name of the city, it also has the nickname “City of Lights”. This nickname was officially adopted back in 1908, and it is due to the fact that Aurora is the first American city with a completely electrified street lighting system.

The city was founded in 1834. It was in this year that the McCarthy brothers bought a piece of land on a river called Fox and built a house and a number of outbuildings there. Three years later, a post office appeared in the settlement, and the name “Aurora” itself became official. After another twenty years, Aurora merged with the settlement on the west bank of the river. Over the next sixty years, the city experienced rapid development: hospitals and schools were opened, industrial enterprises were founded, thousands of immigrants from all over the world began to enter here. However, then there was a decline in development and by 1980 most of the city’s enterprises were closed. In 1993, the first casino was opened here.

Today, Aurora has a fairly developed industry, represented by enterprises for the production of hardware, jewelry, technical silver, industrial equipment, as well as metallurgical enterprises and breweries.

Brief History of Illinois

Rockford, Illinois

Rockford, Illinois, a city located in the northern part of the state, has a diverse and industrious history that has contributed to its growth and development. The city’s story is marked by its industrial prowess, cultural contributions, and a commitment to innovation, while its climate experiences distinct seasons that shape the character of the region.

Rockford’s history can be traced back to the early 19th century when settlers began to establish communities along the Rock River. The city’s growth was significantly influenced by its strategic location along waterways, including the Rock River and the Galena-Chicago stagecoach route. In 1834, Germanicus Kent, Lewis Lemon, and Thatcher Blake founded the town, which was initially known as Midway due to its location between Galena and Chicago. It was later renamed Rockford in 1837.

The city’s development accelerated with the arrival of the railroad in the mid-19th century, connecting Rockford to major urban centers and facilitating the transportation of goods. The Industrial Revolution played a crucial role in shaping Rockford’s economy, leading to the establishment of manufacturing industries. Furniture manufacturing became a significant sector, earning Rockford the moniker “Forest City” due to its prominence in the furniture industry.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Rockford diversified its industrial base, becoming a hub for various manufacturing activities. The city gained recognition for producing machinery, tools, and automotive parts. The establishment of iconic companies such as Ingersoll and Sundstrand Corporation solidified Rockford’s reputation as an industrial center.

Rockford’s industrial growth was accompanied by cultural developments. The city’s commitment to education led to the founding of Rockford College (now Rockford University) in 1847. The Laurent House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, stands as an architectural gem and a testament to the city’s appreciation for the arts.

According to Relationshipsplus, the climate in Rockford is characterized by four distinct seasons, influenced by its location in the upper Midwest. Summers are warm, with average high temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to mid-80s Fahrenheit (24-29°C). Winters are cold, with average highs in the 20s and 30s Fahrenheit (-6 to 4°C). Snowfall is common during the winter months, contributing to the seasonal landscape.

Spring and fall bring transitional weather, with mild temperatures and changing foliage. The Rock River, which runs through the city, adds to the scenic beauty and recreational opportunities in the area.

Rockford has faced economic challenges, particularly during periods of industrial decline and restructuring in the latter half of the 20th century. The city has actively sought to diversify its economy, emphasizing healthcare, aerospace, and technology sectors.

Today, Rockford continues to evolve as a modern city with a mix of industrial and service-based industries. The Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau promotes the city’s cultural attractions, events, and recreational opportunities, including the Anderson Japanese Gardens and the Burpee Museum of Natural History.

Efforts to revitalize downtown Rockford have focused on creating vibrant public spaces, supporting local businesses, and preserving historic architecture. The Rockford City Market, held in the heart of downtown, is a popular event that showcases local vendors and fosters community engagement.

Rockford, Illinois, reflects the enduring spirit of American industrial cities. From its early days as a strategic settlement along the Rock River to its evolution into a diversified industrial hub, Rockford’s history is interwoven with innovation and adaptability. The city’s climate, marked by distinct seasons, adds to the character of the region and shapes the experiences of its residents. As Rockford embraces economic diversification and cultural vitality, it stands poised for continued growth and development in the 21st century.