"A thrice riven state" Top 5 Page for this destination Illinois by dlandt

Illinois Travel Guide: 8,236 reviews and 17,679 photos


Illinois is almost a boring state. Its got things to do, and places to see, but for most of its history, its got one claim to fame. Abe Lincoln came from here. There aren't really any famous battles that took place here and the state has been relatively untouched by war. The exceptions I know about are the short-lived and overblown Blackhawk War, the Ottawa-Illini War, and the Ft. Dearborn Massacre.

Illinois doesn't have a distinct culture, we really have three, and if it weren't for Chicago, people would say 'Illinois' in the same breath as Iowa and Nebraska. Chicago is a place unto itself, and really does have a separate, kidn of East Coast identity. A lot of Chicagoans have never even been to other parts of the state and vice versa.


Most people think of Chicago when they think of Illinois, but in reality, Chicago is crowded into one little corner and it doesn't match the state in character culture or just about any other measure of comparison. The majority of the state is quiet countryside with a sprinklin gof nature and outdoor activities. Shown here is a view of the Illinois River.

French History

No one seems to remember it, but the French settled this part of the country first. At the end of the day,they never really settled the area well, and stayed close to their riverfront settlements, yet they were the first Europeans to map the area, make contact with the Indians and begin the process of trade and Christianization.

A full analysis of French influence in Illinois is beyond my abilities, availability, and VT ambitions. I'm not going to try and paint a detaiuled view of French settlers in the 1600s, but I do want to bring a few things to the fore that many others miss. The pages will emerge over time as I have time and travel to the various remanants of that era.

  • Last visit to Illinois: Nov 2003
  • Intro Updated Oct 24, 2004
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Reviews (36)

Comments (9)

  • Kate-Me's Profile Photo
    Jun 19, 2008 at 3:50 AM

    I think if I was ever to visit the US, it's the Indian history I'd like best. Really like how you've written this page. Cheers from downunder, Kate

  • Knoto's Profile Photo
    Apr 18, 2008 at 11:42 AM

    Wow, very interresting Page.Did not know that these area is so wonderful. Greetings from Germany,Peter

  • Florida999's Profile Photo
    Jun 15, 2007 at 5:48 PM

    This is really a nice page! Too bad I didn't look at it before we drove through Illinois!

  • Faiza-Ifrah's Profile Photo
    Mar 9, 2007 at 4:45 PM

    a page well done in a unique style - history. you explained culture of the state very well.

  • Wendy67's Profile Photo
    Sep 11, 2006 at 10:58 AM

    I was thinking of doing an Illinois page and took a look at the top 5. Yours starts out the same way mine would - Illinois is probably the most boring State in the Union ;) You've done well, though. Good history.

  • moiraistyx's Profile Photo
    Sep 8, 2006 at 9:32 AM

    I liked your things to do tips. I can tell you really know your Illinois history.

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Nov 27, 2005 at 6:37 AM

    Nice Local Customs tips about the cultural transitions in Illinois. I also like the historical background in many of these tips. When I was in high school we used to go camping at Starved Rock State Park.

  • Maria250's Profile Photo
    Oct 30, 2005 at 1:02 AM

    Awesome page and tips! Yet I rather check on Hemingway in Chicago "on spot" right? Can't wait. Best to you & family.

  • KiKitC's Profile Photo
    Oct 20, 2005 at 11:37 AM

    My lollipop dreams will be much sweeter knowing that Raggedy Ann & Andy have finally gotten their own museum. Hehehe

dlandt Used To Live Here!


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