State Abbreviation IL
State Capital Springfield
State Size Total (Land + Water): 57,914 sq miles; Land Only: 55,584 sq miles
Number of Counties 102
Time Zone Central Time Zone
Bordering States Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Kentucky, Missouri, Wisconsin
Highest Point Charles Mound, 1,235 feet
National Parks None
State Population (2015) 12,859,995
State Population Density 231.4 people / square mile
Area Codes 217, 224, 309, 312, 331, 447, 464, 618, 630, 708, 730, 773, 779, 815, 847, 872
Top 5 Cities (2010 population) Chicago (2,695,598)
State Amphibian Eastern tiger salamander
State Animal White-tailed deer
State Bird Cardinal
State Dance Square dance
State Fish Bluegill
State Flower Violet
State Fossil Tully monster
State Insect Monarch butterfly
State Mineral Fluorite
State Motto State sovereignty, national union
State Nickname Prairie State
State Prarie Grass Big bluestem
State Reptile Painted turtle
State Snack Food Popcorn
State Soil Drummer silty clay loam
State Tree White oak
•The name "Illinois" comes from a Native American word meaning "tribe of superior men."
•The world's first skyscraper, the ten-story Home Insurance Building, was built in Chicago in 1885.
•The IATA airport code "ORD" for Chicago's O'Hare Airport comes from its original name, Orchard Field. O'Hare Airport was named in honor of Lieutenant Commander Edward H. "Butch" O'Hare.
•The first all-color TV station, WMAQ-TV, debuted in Chicago on April 15, 1956.
•Illinois is home to the world’s largest bottle of catsup, a 170-feet tall water tower located south of downtown Collinsville, Illinois.
•Carol Moseley Braun became the first female African-American Senator when she was elected to the U.S. Senate in Illinois in 1992.
•Illinois is the largest producer of pumpkins in the United States, and Morton is the self-proclaimed "Pumpkin Capitol of the World."
•In Illinois, the legal drinking age is 21. Those under 21 can drink legally provided that they are participating in a culinary arts, food service, or restaurant management degree program of which a portion of the program includes instruction on responsible alcoholic beverage serving methods.
•The official State Snack Food in Illinois is popcorn. A group of elementary school students, with help from their teacher, Fran Hollister, at Cunningham Elementary School in Joliet petitioned Illinois legistrators to make popcorn the official snack food of Illinois, and State Senator Larry Walsh sponsored the bill. The bill was passed in 2003.
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