Wednesday, December 31, 2008

OE Knows Illinois - Illinois Trivia

Now it's all right and fine to know the big stuff about Illinois, but it helps to know other stuff about the Land of Lincoln too. See, I already knew that without having to research it - and no, it's not because I've been making license plates in an Illinois prison.

But I did research some Illinois trivia in preparation for my Senate candidacy. Here's a few things I learned from

Ottawa, Freeport, Jonesboro, Charleston, Galesburg, Quincy and Alton hosted the famous Lincoln-Douglas debates that stirred interest all over the country in the slavery issue.

Peoria is the oldest community in Illinois.

Metropolis the home of Superman really exists in Southern Illinois.

On December 2, 1942, Enrico Fermi and a small band of scientists and engineers demonstrated that a simple construction of graphite bricks and uranium lumps could produce controlled heat. The space chosen for the first nuclear fission reactor was a squash court under the football stadium at the University of Chicago.

But one piece of trivia at this website caused me some political consternation.

Des Plaines is home to the first McDonald's.

Now I happen to know that this is untrue, since the original McDonald's was actually established in San Bernardino, California, just east of where I live - I mean used to live. But when I become Illinois Senator, I'll obviously have to support the claim of Des Plaines.

Ah, politics.

For those who aren't aware, the competing claims cited above originate from a concept begun by two brothers named McDonald, and greatly expanded by a man named Ray Kroc. More here on both the San Bernardino and Des Plaines locations.

But back to trivia. I guess I'd better get to know the Illinois Attorney General, Lisa Madigan, considering the present circumstances, so let's see what trivia she has. Here are some excerpts.

The name "Illinois" comes from a Native American word meaning "tribe of superior men."

Illinois became a state on December 3, 1818. Illinois was the 21st state to enter the Union. It had a population of 34,620 people. Illinois is now the sixth most populous state in the country with almost 11.5 million people.

The state slogan, "Land of Lincoln," was adopted by the General Assembly in 1955. The State of Illinois has a copyright for the exclusive use of the slogan.

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