Illinois becomes the 21st state

Illinois becomes the 21st state

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Illinois achieves full statehood on this day. Though Illinois presented unique challenges to immigrants unaccustomed to the soil and vegetation of the area, it grew to become a bustling and densely populated state.

The prairie lands east of the Mississippi and west of Lake Michigan presented a difficult challenge to the tide of westward-moving immigrants. Accustomed to the heavily forested lands of states like Kentucky and Tennessee, the early immigrants to Illinois did not know what to make of the vast treeless stretches of the prairie. Most pioneers believed that the fertility of soil revealed itself by the abundance of vegetation it supported, so they assumed that the lack of trees on the prairie signaled inferior farmland. Those brave souls who did try to farm the prairie found that their flimsy plows were inadequate to cut through prairie sod thickly knotted with deep roots. In an “age of wood,” farmers also felt helpless without ready access to the trees they needed for their tools, homes, furniture, fences, and fuel. For all these reasons, most of the early Illinois settlers remained in the southern part of the state, where they built homes and farms near the trees that grew along the many creek and river bottoms.

The challenge of the prairies slowed emigration into the region; when Illinois was granted statehood in 1818, the population was only about 35,000, and most of the prairie was still largely unsettled. Gradually, though, a few tough Illinois farmers took on the difficult task of plowing the prairie and discovered that the soil was far richer than they had expected. The development of heavy prairie plows and improved access to wood and other supplies through new shipping routes encouraged even more farmers to head out into the vast northern prairie lands of Illinois.

By 1840, the center of population in Illinois had shifted decisively to the north, and the once insignificant hamlet of Chicago rapidly became a bustling city. The four giant prairie counties of northern Illinois, which were the last to be settled, boasted population densities of 18 people per square mile. Increasingly recognized as one of the nation’s most fertile agricultural areas, the vast emptiness of the Illinois prairie was eagerly conquered by both pioneers and plows.

Illinois becomes the 21st state - HISTORY

The name “Illinois” comes from the French, who first colonized the area around it, who in turn borrowed the name the natives called themselves. The land of Illini men or Illini warriors had gone through a boom-and-bust population cycle before the French arrived. By 1778 Virginia claimed control over the Illinois territory, replacing the alternating French and British rule. By 1809 the territory of Illinois, more or less in its current shape was carved out of the larger parcel of land, and soon after began its drive to statehood.

On this day, August 26, 1818, Illinois became the 21st state of the Union. The move was highly controversial at the time: the requirement for statehood was a population of at least 60,000, and Illinois at the time of its application had only 40,000. Moreover, to accept the city of Chicago as part of the state, its borders had to be revised northward significantly.

The driving force behind Illinois statehood goes was a young man named Daniel Pope Cook, who at the age of 20 launched the first newspaper in Illinois Territory, the Western Intelligencer. Cook used his paper to crusade for statehood: the first meeting on the subject of statehood, in the Illinois territory capital of Kaskaskia, was prompted by an Intelligencer article.

State Of Illinois

The U.S. State of Illinois was admitted as the 21st state of the union on December 3rd, 1818. Not unlike the bordering state of Indiana, Illinois was home to several indigenous tribes of Native Americans for several thousands of years before European contact was made. Also similar to Indiana, the French were the first Europeans to settle in the region, mainly along the Mississippi River around the same time the Algonquin Native American tribes were living in the region. During the late 1600s, two French explorers named Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet explored the region along the Illinois River. They founded a mission in the Grand Village of Illinois in what was being called Illinois Country.

The French continued to build small settlements, trading posts, and forts in the region throughout the remainder of the 1600s and early 1700’s. However, after the French lost the French and Indian War to the British Colonists, they surrendered much of their territory east of the Mississippi River. This left Illinois Country in the hands of the British.

After changing hands again after the American Revolution, Illinois Country became a part of the Northwest Territory while waiting for its turn to admission into the union. In the years following the American Revolution, the boundaries for the Illinois Territory were being drawn, with it becoming an official territory in 1809 and eventually a state in 1818.

Present – Illinois

Currently, Illinois is the 25th largest state in the union by area and the 6th most populous. The capital of Springfield, as of the 2010 census conducted by the United States Census Bureau, has a population of 117,352. The city of Springfield is dwarfed in comparison to the 3rd most populous city in the nation of Chicago, Illinois. The metropolitan area of Chicago is home to nearly 3 million people. With its prime location along the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago is a major U.S. shipping port. With routes through the Great Lakes, the port serves as a major hub for global shipping transportation. Connections to the Mississippi River and the Atlantic Ocean through various seaways have contributed to the massive economic boom and population growth in the region over time.

Illinois has an extremely diverse economy driving its population. Illinois’ unique geographical location situated in the Midwest, bordering Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River, along with the vast differences in terrain between the north and south of the state, Illinois has succeeded in merging many of America’s most crucial industries and markets within its state boundaries.

For example, the Chicago metropolitan area has become a major financial center and a global trading hub. In addition, the northeastern region has helped to turn Illinois into one of the nation’s leaders in manufacturing. The southern region is one of the largest exporters of soybeans, along with wheat, dairy, and corn.

Illinois is also leading a cutting-edge energy program. Currently, there are six operating nuclear power plants within its borders. In recent years, Illinois has also become a strong proponent for Wind generated electric power and Biofuels.

Tourism in Illinois

Throughout the state, Illinois has much to offer tourists. Chicago alone boasts two Major League Baseball teams, the Chicago Cubs and the White Sox, an NFL team in the Chicago Bears, the Chicago Blackhawks of the NHL, and the Chicago Bulls of the NBA. However, aside from the metropolitan area of Chicago, Illinois is full of parks, trails, historic sites, and preserves managed both by the Illinois State Parks system and the National Park Service.

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Illinois becomes 21st state, Dec. 3, 1818

On this day in 1818, Illinois became the 21st state. At the time, the population numbered about 35,000 residents. The treeless prairie — so different from the adjacent forests of Kentucky and Tennessee — was still largely unsettled.

Most of the early Illinois settlers remained in the southern part of the state, where they built homes and farms near the trees that grew along creek and river bottoms. Eventually, a few farmers took on the task of plowing the prairie and discovered that the soil was richer than they had expected.

The development of heavier prairie plows and improved access to wood and other supplies, accessible through new shipping routes, encouraged more farmers to head upstate. By 1840, the center of population in Illinois had shifted to the north. Chicago, once a remote hamlet, rapidly emerged as a bustling city.

The 1820 census counted 55,211 Illinois residents, a gain of 16.2 percent from 1810. Since then, Illinois has gained population in every decennial census, although the rate of growth has slowed. Currently, it is approaching 13 million.

Slavery was nominally banned by the Northwest Ordinance, but the ordinance was rarely enforced. When Illinois became a state and the ordinance no longer applied, there were about 900 slaves still living there.

The southern part of the state, known as “Little Egypt,” was mainly settled by migrants from the South, who had traveled there via the Ohio River. The region remained hostile to free blacks, and local leaders allowed settlers to bring their slaves with them.

Pro-slavery forces sought to call a convention to legalize slavery. But they were blocked by Gov. Edward Coles, who mobilized the anti-slavery forces, warning that rich slave owners would buy up all the good farmlands. An 1823 referendum revealed that three-fifths of the voters opposed slavery.

Illinois becomes the 21st state - HISTORY

Chicago, Illinois by Adrian104

Before the Europeans arrived in Illinois the land was inhabited by a number of Native American tribes including the Illini, a confederation of around 12 different tribes. Throughout the 1700s other tribes moved into the area including the Iroquois, the Chippewa, the Potawatomi, and the Miami.

In 1673, French explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Joliet were the first Europeans to arrive in Illinois. They traveled along the Mississippi and the Illinois River making contact with the local Native American tribes. They claimed the land for France and soon the French were moving in to establish the fur trade with the local natives.

Over the next several years the French built a number of forts and small settlements in the region. They got along well with the natives as they mostly wanted to trade and didn't want to take over the land.

Britain and the United States

The British gained control of Illinois after winning the French and Indian War in 1763. However, just 20 years later in 1783, the land became part of the United States after the Revolutionary War and was made part of the Northwest Territory in 1787.

As Illinois grew, it became more important to the United States. In 1809, the Illinois Territory was created with its own governor and capital city in Kaskaskia. On December 3, 1818, Illinois was admitted to Union as the 21st state. The capital city moved to Vandalia in 1819 and then to Springfield (the current capital) in 1839.

As more and more settlers moved into Illinois, Native American tribes were forced to move further west. Some of the tribes decided they wanted their land back. In 1832, a group of Indians led by Sauk chief Black Hawk returned to Illinois to take their land back. Black Hawk and his warriors were defeated by the U.S. army at the Battle of Bad Axe and were forced to move back to Iowa.

Black Hawk by Charles Bird King

Illinois stayed loyal to the Union during the Civil War. Even though there were no major battles in Illinois, over 250,000 men from Illinois served as soldiers in the Union Army. The war ended in 1865 with the surrender of the Confederate Army.

One of the worst fire disasters in the history of the United States was the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. It all started with a small fire in a barn in south Chicago. Most of the buildings in those days were made of wood and once the fire got going it was tough to stop. Over 20,000 buildings were completely destroyed.

Abraham Lincoln by T.P. Pearson

Teachers First - Thinking Teachers Teaching Thinkers

Broad, level lands known as the Central Plains, gave Illinois its nickname - the "Prairie State." These Central Plains cover nearly 90% of the state. This gently rolling land was created during the Ice Age when glaciers leveled the area and deposited material that would later become soil. More than 275 rivers from this region flow into the Mississippi-Ohio river system.

The Central Plains region includes an area of rich farmland known as the Till Plains. These plains are part of the Midwestern Corn Belt, extending from Ohio to Kansas.

The industrial area surrounding Chicago is part of the Great Lakes Plains. Once covered by Lake Michigan, this region has small hills, lakes, and marshes. Illinois has 63 miles of shoreline on Lake Michigan.

Illinois' tallest hills and deepest valleys are found in the northwest corner of the state. The highest point in Illinois, Charles Mound (1,235 feet), is located there. The Shawnee Hills in the southern part of the state range from 300 to 1,065 feet above sea level. This is an area of forested hills, valleys, woods, and river bluffs.

The lowest point in Illinois (279 feet above sea level) is found in the Gulf Coastal Plain at the very southern tip of the state. The Ohio and Mississippi Rivers meet here. Early settlers believed the land between the Ohio and Mississippi resembled the Nile River delta and so named this region "Egypt."


French explorers and missionaries were among the first Europeans to come to Illinois. Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet entered the region in 1673 from the French Canadian colonies to the north. They were sent by the governor of their colony to find and trace the Mississippi River. The two men traveled south along the western boundary of Illinois, then northward up the Illinois River. Two years later, Marquette returned to establish a mission at the Kaskaskia Indian village near present-day Utica.

In 1699, French priests established Cahokia, the first permanent town in the region. Cahokia was a fur-trading post. The fur trade was commercially very important to Illinois during the late 17th century. Furs were taken down the Chicago River to Lake Michigan, loaded on awaiting ships, and taken to Europe for sale. Cahokia, along with the town of Kaskaskia, established by Jesuit priests in 1703, became the center of life for French settlers in the area.

Illinois became part of the French colony of Louisiana in 1717. Soon many French settlers began arriving from Europe. Unrest quickly developed between the French and the British, who had claimed all territory inland from their Atlantic colonies. The French joined with the Indians in a series of conflicts with the British known as the French and Indian Wars (1754-1763). The British were ultimately successful and France gave up its claim to Illinois in 1763 as a result of the Treaty of Paris. Many French settlers left the region, moving west, across the Mississippi River.

In 1778, during the American Revolution (1775-1783), Colonel George Rogers Clark of Virginia captured the towns of Kaskaskia and Cahokia. This region became part of Virginia. After the war ended, the state of Maryland refused to ratify the Articles of Confederation until Virginia and other states gave up their western lands. So in 1784, Virginia gave this territory to the government.

Illinois became part of the Northwest Territory in 1787 and, through an act of Congress, part of Indiana Territory in 1800. In 1809, Congress created Illinois Territory, which also included Wisconsin. Kaskaskia became the territorial capital.

As the number of settlers coming to the area increased, more and more land was seized from the native tribes. This created a great deal of anger toward the white settlers. When the United States declared war on Great Britain in 1812, the native tribes sided with the British. A bloody Indian attack occurred in 1812 when the Potawatomis massacred many Illinois settlers at Fort Dearborn.

Illinois became the 21st state in 1818, and in 1820 the capital was moved to Vandalia. At that time, the northern boundary of Illinois only extended as far as the southern tip of Lake Michigan. Nathaneal Pope, a territorial delegate to Congress, successfully extended the boundary northward, to include the present-day Chicago area.

Immigrants from all parts of Europe began arriving in Illinois in the years before the Civil War. The Irish came to work on the Illinois and Michigan Canal. Many others set up farms, built railroads connecting many of the state's major cities, and worked in the growing factories and mines. The capital was moved to Springfield in 1839. The Illinois-Michigan Canal was finished in 1849. It allowed Illinois farmers to easily ship their produce to the East, via the Great Lakes.

The career of Abraham Lincoln, one of the state's most beloved residents, began during a period of tremendous industrial growth and development in the 1840s and 1850s. Lincoln and lawyer Stephen Douglas achieved national attention with their senatorial debates on the slavery issue in 1858. Lincoln became the 16th president in 1861.

Although a strong pro-slavery sentiment existed in the southern part of Illinois, more than 255,000 Illinois soldiers fought for the Union during the Civil War (1861-1865). But no Civil War battles were fought within the state of Illinois.

Industry expanded dramatically after the Civil War. The state legislature began to set aside land for the eventual development of stockyards and the legendary Illinois meat packing industry. By the 1870s, building construction could not keep pace with the growing city of Chicago. Many flimsy, wooden structures had been hastily built to accommodate the increasing population. A tragic fire in 1871 destroyed most of the city and left 100,000 people homeless.

Between 1870 and 1900, workers in the state's factories, railroads and mines began to protest unfair labor practices. This resulted in a series of violent disputes that included the Haymarket Square Riot in 1886 and the Pullman Strike in 1894.


Illinois is an important agricultural state. Rich farmland, adequate rainfall, and a long growing season contribute to its success as a leading producer of corn and soybeans. Other agricultural products include cattle, hogs, wheat, oats, sorghum, and hay.

Since the 1880s Illinois had been a leading industrial state. This is due to its reserves of natural resources and its excellent transportation and communication systems. The mineral wealth of the state includes deposits of coal and oil. The Chicago area is an iron and steel producer, meat packing center, grain exchange, and transportation center.

Some of the state's leading manufactured products include food and agricultural items, chemicals, printed and published materials, transportation and computer equipment, and industrial machinery.

First Inhabitants:

The earliest inhabitants of Illinois were the prehistoric Mound Builders. These groups of Native Americans left behind more than 10,000 temple and burial mounds throughout the state. Monk's Mound, near present-day Cahokia, is the largest prehistoric earthen structure in the United States.

Before white men entered the region, it was occupied by a group of six united tribes known as the Illiniwek or Illini, a native word meaning "superior men." The Illini consisted of the Cahokia, Kaskaskia, Michigamea, Moingwena, Peoria and Tamarosa tribes. They were all part of the Algonkian family.

Some of the other tribes that played a part in the state's early history were the Chippewa, Ottawa, Potawatomi, Winnebago, Kickapoo, and Shawnee. In 1680, the Iroquois entered the region to attack the Illinois tribes. Many were killed in the conflict. By 1800 few Natives remained.

Books Related To Illinois

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America is Her Name - Luis Rodriguez
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Famous Citizens:

Ray Bradbury
Ray Bradbury, the author of Fahrenheit 451, The Martian Chronicles, and The Illustrated Man, was born in Waukegan, Illinois. Bradbury published more than 500 works of science fiction and fantasy including short stories, plays, novels, screenplays, television scripts and verse. In 2000 he was awarded the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.

William Jennings Bryan
William Jennings Bryan was born in Salem, Illinois. He was a US Congressman, three-time Democratic presidential nominee, Secretary of State, and a major force in American politics for three decades. In 1925 he served as a prosecution lawyer in the famous Scopes Trial, a high profile Tennessee case involving the teaching of evolution in a public school.

Walt Disney
Walt Disney the creator of Mickey Mouse and founder of the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Theme Parks was born in Chicago, Illinois. One of the world's most creative pioneers and innovators in graphic arts, Disney received more than 950 honors and citations from every nation in the world, including 48 Academy Awards and seven Emmys.

Robert Millikan
Robert Millikan was born in Morrison, Illinois. As a scientist, Millikan made numerous momentous discoveries, chiefly in the fields of electricity, optics, and molecular physics. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1923 for his work in demonstrating the existence of electrons.

Carl Sandburg
Carl Sandburg was born in Galesburg, Illinois. Sandburg was a poet and biographer who won Pulitzer Prizes for his biography Abraham Lincoln: The War Years and for his Completed Poems in 1951. He was also a novelist, journalist, children's author, and folksong anthologist.

James Dewey Watson
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Watson attended the University of Chicago and received a degree in Zoology. He became interested in genetics and attended Indiana University where he received the PhD. By the 1950s, he began to do research into the structure of DNA. Working with Francis Crick, they proposed the double-helix configuration of DNA. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1962 along with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins.

Places to Visit in Illinois: (Click the links to learn more.)

Art Institute of Chicago - Chicago
The Art Institute, founded in 1893, houses both a museum and a school. The museum contains more than 300,00 works including such celebrated pieces as Grant Woods's American Gothic, Edward Hopper's Night Hawks and 33 paintings by Claude Monet.

Dickson Mounds - between Lewistown and Havana
This on-site archeological museum allows visitors to explore the world of the American Indian through hands-on activities, interpretive exhibits, and a variety of special events. The museum is a National Historic Site and a branch of the Illinois State Museum.

The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum - Springfield
Opened in 2003, this state-of-the-art museum presents the life of Abraham Lincoln through interactive technology, hands-on exhibits, and the world's largest collection of Lincoln memorabilia. The website provides a virtual tour of the museum.

Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum - Chicago
Located along the shore of Lake Michigan, Adler was the first planetarium to be established in America. The museum collection houses more than 2,000 historic navigational, astronomical, and mathematical instruments. Also included are exhibits on the solar system, the Milky Way, the history of astronomical discovery and how astronomy has affected different cultures.


Archaeologists aren’t sure exactly when the first people arrived in what’s now Illinois. But archaeologists have uncovered ancient spear points and tools suggesting that humans lived here at least 10,000 years ago. Illinois’ first-known Native American tribes, which include the Miami and the Illiniwek (also known as the Illinois), lived on the land thousands of years later.

The first Europeans to reach the area were French explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet, who arrived in 1673. In 1717 Illinois became part of the Louisiana territory, a French colony. But in 1763 at the end of the French and Indian War, the French ceded, or gave up, the region to Britain. After the American Revolution, Illinois became a U.S. territory, and in 1818 it was declared the 21st state.

During the Civil War (1861-1865) Illinois hosted no major battles, but more than 250,000 troops from Illinois fought for the Union.

Disaster struck in 1871 when a huge fire swept through Chicago, Illinois. But the reconstruction that followed the Great Chicago Fire made Chicago into a modern city that contained the world’s first skyscrapers.


The name Illinois comes from the Native American tribe living on the land when the area was first explored by Europeans.

Much of Illinois was once covered in prairie grass, earning the state its nickname.

When did Illinois Become a State

Illinois is a state located in the Midwestern section of the United States. It is bordered by Iowa and Missouri to the west, Wisconsin to the north, Indiana to the east and Kentucky to the south-east (it also shares a water boundary with Michigan). It is the 25th largest state by area and the 5th largest state by population. It has been a historically important state because of its location, access to fresh water, natural resources and suitability for agriculture. The European history of the state began in 1673 when French explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet entered the region. However, before this time Native American tribes had long lived in the region. Let’s take a brief look at the history of Illinois and discover when it became a state.

A brief history
In terms of European history, the territory first belonged to the French and it was part of the French empire of La Louisiane. It remained in French hands until 1763 when it became British territory after the Seven Years War. In 1778 George Rogers Clark claimed the region for Virginia and in 1783 it was given to the United States to become part of the Northwest Territory. On February 3, 1809, the Illinois Territory was created. This territory originally included modern day Illinois, Wisconsin and parts of Minnesota and Michigan. In preparation for statehood the remaining territory was added to the Michigan territory.

When did Illinois become a state?
There were many discussions in the lead up to Illinois being made a state. One of these issues was the northern border, which was moved twice during discussions. It was first moved to 10 miles north of the southernmost portion of Lake Michigan (the same as the provision made for Indiana), but the Illinois delegate Nathaniel Pope wanted more and it was eventually moved further north. The original bill for statehood, was submitted to the US Congress on January 23, 1818, and on December 3, 1818, it became the 21st state of the United States of America.

Looking Back: The Fight for Illinois Statehood and the Debate Over Slavey in 1818

On December 3, 1818 Illinois became the 21st state of the Union. Against the backdrop of a mounting debate over whether incoming states would allow slavery, Illinois’ eventual status as a free state was by no means a certainty as the push for statehood began. A legacy of French slaveholders in the state – many of whom still held slaves – and a desire for migration from slaveholding states in the south made the debate contentious, in spite of the fact that the legacy of the Northwest Ordinance had outlawed slavery in 1787. While conventional wisdom held that Illinois would enter the Union as a free state, many of Illinois’s 36,000 residents remained pro-slavery, and the territory was home to a system of “indenture” that was, for all intents and purposes, a form of de facto slavery.

Because of the perception that Illinois would likely become a free state and tip the balance of power, Illinois faced an uphill battle to accede to the Union as the 21st state. Congress had ruled that territories’ population must exceed 60,000 in order to apply for statehood. The Illinois Territory’s congressional delegate Nathaniel Pope, however, was determined to see Illinois’ statehood through. Precedent existed for Illinois’s bid, as Ohio achieved statehood in 1802 with just 40,000 residents.

There was a sense of urgency backing Illinois’ bid: in contrast to Illinois’s ambiguous, quasi-free territory status, neighboring Missouri was unambiguously a slave territory and was already petitioning for statehood. Anti-Slavery Illinoisans (which were roughly 60% of the population according to a poll conducted at that time), worried that if Missouri were admitted first that it would set precedent for Illinois to become a slave state. As Missouri had roughly the same population as Illinois, and was growing at a faster rate, anti-slavery Illinoisans feared that they would be overwhelmed by their pro-slavery neighbors, and the Prairie State would enter the Union as a slave state and permanently tip the balance in Congress to pro-slavery interests.

At the time, the Illinois Territory’s northern border extended only to Indiana's northern border, leaving the territory cut off from the Great Lakes. Seeing the value of access to Lake Michigan and the mouth of the Chicago River, Pope steered Illinois’ border 31 miles north to where it sits today. His main argument was simple: giving Illinois access to a natural harbor would provide better access to other northern states, granting better security for the Union and more rapid development for the state. Author Frank Cicero Jr. who wrote Creating the Land of Lincoln believes that the new border for Illinois would be instrumental in electing the future President Abraham Lincoln as it allowed the Republican Party that was entrenched in Wisconsin to create a political wave that would envelope Illinois and tie its economy (and, thus, its long-term interests) to other free states.

As Illinois advanced its bid for statehood, only deep southern Georgia’s Congressional delegation vocally opposed entertaining Illinois’s bid for statehood. As the provisional constitution seemed to indicate that Illinois would indeed enter the Union as a free state, Georgia’s delegation attempted to delay Illinois’s bid. Ultimately, four senators out of 40 voted to postpone discussion on admittance of Illinois as a state due to Georgia’s opposition.

Illinois had won the race against Missouri in 1818. Missouri had presented petitions for statehood just 8 days before Illinois. The congressional committee for Missouri did not report a bill until April 3 of 1818, by which time it was too late for the current session of Congress to consider it. Pope secured Illinois as the 21st state, and as a free state.

Though its initial constitution mandated that slavery would not be “thereafter introduced” in Illinois, there remained a significant slave population and indentured servants, as well as a repressive “Black Code” that ruled Illinois’s black residents:

Could not vote testify or bring suit against whites gather in groups of three or more without risk of being jailed or beaten and could not serve in the militia and thus were unable to own or bear arms. Blacks living in the state were required to obtain and carry a Certificate of Freedom otherwise, they were presumed to be slaves. The Illinois constitution also allowed indentured servitude at the salt mines in southern Illinois.

Pro-slavery and racist sentiment remained a center of division throughout much of Illinois’s early history. A split vote on a new constitutional convention that would have made slavery explicitly illegal in the state was turned down by a narrow referendum in 1824. Slavery would not be constitutionally banned in Illinois until the ratification of a new constitution in 1848, at which point more diverse, urban interests in the state’s budding urban areas gave the state a much stronger abolitionist culture. As the state’s economic and population centers drifted further north due to prairie settlement and the establishment of Chicago on the site of Fort Dearborn, Illinois became one of the staunchest defenders of the Union by the time of the Civil War, with more than 250,000 Illinoisans serving in the Union Army. Even still, the state’s Black Code was only abolished in 1865, and the state continues to grapple with racial divides today.

Only 201 years ago today Illinois becomes the 21st state

I like these "today in history" threads you do. keep 'em coming.

originally posted by: Oldtimer2
a reply to: stonerwilliam LOL,yeah right the pioneers built giant elaborate buildings which cost millions,yet they lived in shacks,with a horse and a rope,BS,the British then invaded a country felled by disaster,changed true history,look at mapped US before 1800's,then look now,2 different looking places,and Calif was an island

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The Importance of Massroots’ NASDAQ Appeal

Successfully listing on the stock exchange could start a new rush for the cannabis industry.

Editor’s note: Canopy Growth Corp. is the first non-pharmaceutical cannabis company to be listed on a major stock exchange, the Toronto Stock Exchange, in North America. Within the U.S., MassRoots, a cannabis social networking company, has come the closest to being listed on Nasdaq. It was rejected in May and has appealed the decision, backed by The ArcView Group and the National Cannabis Industry Association.

In the world of U.S.-based securities law, the most prestigious marketplaces to sell a company’s securities are the national stock exchanges: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and Nasdaq. The prestige of being listed on the NYSE or Nasdaq is reflected in higher trading volumes of listed companies’ securities, which often results in those companies’ ability to more easily raise money through sales of their securities. Currently, no cannabis-related company outside of the pharmaceutical industry has successfully listed on either NYSE or Nasdaq.

There are already a number of pharmaceutical companies that have non-cannabis business lines, but that are engaged in cannabis-related research, listed on both national stock exchanges, including Abbott Laboratories (ABT:NYSE), AbbVie Inc. (ABBV: NYSE) and GW Pharmaceuticals (GWPH:Nasdaq). However, whether companies whose business models are solely focused on cannabis would be allowed by the NYSE or Nasdaq to list their stocks for sale is still a relatively open question.

By submitting a listing application to Nasdaq in September 2015, MassRoots, a cannabis-focused social media company, hoped to be the first cannabis industry-focused company listed on a national stock exchange. Prior to MassRoots’ application, no such cannabis company has attempted to list on a national exchange. MassRoots’ 2015 application was denied for failure to meet all of Nasdaq’s listing requirements, including a lack of support from a financial institution such as a broker-dealer or underwriter.

Despite this initial setback, MassRoots was able to secure an underwriting agreement this year with a boutique investment bank, Chardan Capital Markets, that was willing to underwrite a small public offering for the company in connection with its listing on Nasdaq. With the force of Chardan’s capital behind it, MassRoots’ re-applied to be listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market exchange in April.

Nasdaq again rejected the company’s application for listing on May 23. In its denial to the company’s application, Nasdaq indicated that it vows to uphold federal laws, and rejected MassRoots’ listing application on the grounds that the company might aid in the use and dealing of an (federally) illegal substance.

What does this mean for the future of the cannabis industry related to the stock exchange? MassRoots has indicated that it will appeal Nasdaq’s decision, and indeed has a number of avenues by which it can pursue such an appeal. The outcome of MassRoots’ appeal may set a precedent as to whether Nasdaq views companies that do not ‘touch the plant,’ like MassRoots, as more like the already-listed pharmaceutical companies mentioned above. Alternatively, another rejection could mean that Nasdaq continues to view MassRoots more like a cannabis-growing operation that ‘touches the plant’ and is almost certainly violating federal law (which violation would effectively prohibit listing on Nasdaq).

The success of MassRoots’ Nasdaq appeal is arguably the hottest issue to watch in the arena of public cannabis companies right now. It is highly likely that if MassRoots’ application is ultimately approved by Nasdaq, any number of the cannabis industry companies currently quoted on the OTC Markets Group Inc.’s marketplaces will rush to be uplisted as well.

On the other hand, if MassRoots’ appeal is unsuccessful, cannabis companies may have to wait for a significant change in federal law, such as an amendment or repeal of the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, to be able to list on the NYSE or Nasdaq. Such an outcome could significantly limit cannabis companies’ ability to raise large amounts of public capital.

Cautious investors would be well-advised to understand MassRoots’ difficulties in applying for listing on Nasdaq, and the implications of such difficulties, when evaluating an investment in cannabis-industry companies prior to the resolution of MassRoots’ appeal to Nasdaq.

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