Celebrating Illinois’ Bicentennial Birthday

Morgan Culton, Staff Writer

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Founded in 1818, Illinois will be celebrating its two-hundredth anniversary this year! In honor of the bicentennial state, here are eight things that you didn’t know about Illinois.


1. Illinois’ name came from the french pronunciation of the Native American word “illiniwek” meaning “best people” (Theculturetrip.com).

(Photo Credit to Museum.state.il.us)


2. Evanston, Illinois is the birthplace of the ice cream sundae. Because legislation was passed around 1890 that prohibited the sale of soda water on Sundays, local soda fountains in Evanston instead served sundaes on Sunday (Thoughtco.com).

(Photo Credit to Ghirardelli.com)


3. Illinois is home to the only river in the world that flows backwards (Huffingtonpost.com).

(Photo Credit to Chicagobusiness.com)


4.  There is a fire breathing dragon in Vandalia, Illinois. It is known as the Kaskaskia Dragon (Huffingtonpost.com).

(Photo Credit to Ilfbpartners.com)


5. The Tully Monster, a small carnivorous invertebrate that resembled a cuttlefish, was native to Illinois’ swamps about 300 million years ago and is now the state fossil (Mentalfloss.com).

(Photo Credit to Eartharchives,org)


6. The tallest man in the world, Robert Pershing Wadlow was born in Alton, Illinois. He stood at 8 feet and 11 inches tall and weighed 490 pounds (50states.com).

(Photo Credit to Pinterest.com)


7. In 1885, the world’s first skyscraper was built in Chicago and was a home insurance building (Illinoisfacts.facts.co).

(Photo Credit to Americanhistorama.org)


8. Illinois was the first state to sign the 13th amendment and abolish slavery in 1865 (50states.com).

(Photo Credit to Usconstitutionday.us)


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