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Location of Springfield, Illinois

Springfield is the capital of the State of Illinois and the county seat of Sangamon County. The city was founded in 1819, became the county seat in 1823, and received its city charter in 1840. It was made the capital of Illinois in 1837, and the Legislature convened here for the first time in 1839. As of the 2000 census, its population is 111,454.

The Springfield campus of the University of Illinois is located on the southeast side of the city. It is also home to the Bunn Company, which manufactures coffee supplies. It lies along two interstates (one used to be highway 36), and lies on historic Route 66. When state senator Vince Demuzio died on Tuesday, April 27, 2004, Governor Rod Blagojevich declared a part of Interstate of I-55 from Carlinville (Demuzio represented Carlinville, Illinois, which is about an hour from the capitol) to Springfield calling it the "Vince Demuzio Expressway."

Springfield is the site of a number of attractions centered around President Abraham Lincoln, who started his political career in Springfield. In addition, the NAACP was founded by a coalition of black and white citizens in Springfield in 1909. The Donner Party, a group of pioneers who resorted to cannibalism while snowbound in the Sierra Nevada, originated in Springfield. Springfield's Dana-Thomas House is the best preserved and most complete of Frank Lloyd Wright's early "Prairie" houses. It was built in 1902-04 and has retained many of the furnishings Wright designed for it.

The corn dog on a stick also originated in Springfield, where it is sometimes still called a Cozy Dog. Another culinary pecularity that is not nearly as well known outside of the city is the horseshoe sandwich, a type of open-faced sandwich.

Noted American poet Vachel Lindsay (1879 - 1931) was born and died in Springfield. Ragtime composer Artie Matthews (1888 - 1958) was raised in Springfield. The astronomer Seth Barnes Nicholson (1891 - 1963) was born in Springfield. So was Marjorie Merriweather Post (1887 - 1973), the philanthropist and founder of General Foods Corporation.


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Facts and Information

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