Sunday, August 9, 2020


Marker Details

Historical Marker:

Welcome to Illinois

The marker is located 400 feet south of the Wisconsin state line on the west side of IL 45.
No coordinates identified
Dedication Date:
Dedication By:
Illinois Department of Transportation and The Illinois State Historical Society

Marker Description:
Lake County lies at the extreme Northeast corner of the state. It derives its name form being situated on Lake Michigan, as well as from the great number of lakes within. The land that comprises Lake County was acquired by the United States government by treaty with the Potawatomie and other Indians at Prairie Du Chein in August of 1829. The first white settler of Lake County was Captain Daniel Wright in 1834. The Potawatomie Indians helped him build the first house, which was north of Dutch man's Point in Vernon Township. The following year Hiram Dennicott arrived, and between the two families a settlement was established. Illinois acquired the fourteen northern counties, including the lead mine region around Galena and the site of Chicago, because of the foresight of Nathaniel Pope, Congressional delegate from the Illinois Territory. His amendment to the statehood act moved the upper boundary from an east - west line through the tip of Lake Michigan to the present location. Within this region, US 45 crosses the Des Plaines River which Joliet and Marquette followed in 1673. Between Kankakee and Effingham, US 45 parallels the Illinois Central, the first federal land grant railroad in the United States, and passes through the Lincoln country near Mattoon. In southern Illinois this highway passes Fort Massac State Park, a site which the French fortified extensively in 1757. George Rogers Clark entered the Illinois country near it on his way to capture Kaskaskia.

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