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The Chicago Mercantile Exchange, one of the largest futures exchanges in the world, was founded in Chicago in 1898. The exchange allows traders to buy and sell futures contracts for commodities like corn, soybeans, and crude oil.
Champaign County, located in central Illinois, has a rich history that spans over two centuries. The region was initially inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Kickapoo, Potawatomi, and Chippewa, who utilized the land for hunting and agriculture. European settlers began to arrive in the area in the early 19th century, drawn to the fertile soil and abundant natural resources.

In 1833, Champaign County was officially established, named after the prominent Champaign County in Ohio. The county seat was initially located in a small village called Urbana, which has remained the county's central hub for government, commerce, and education. The early settlers played a crucial role in developing the area's infrastructure, establishing schools, and creating a sense of community.

The arrival of the Illinois Central Railroad in the 1850s played a significant role in the county's development, connecting towns and facilitating trade. The railroad brought increased economic opportunities, leading to the establishment of new industries and a growing population. Agriculture also played a vital role in Champaign County's economy, with farmers taking advantage of the fertile soil to grow a variety of crops such as corn, soybeans, and wheat.

Over the years, Champaign County has become known for its educational institutions. In 1867, the University of Illinois was founded in Urbana, which quickly became a leading research institution. The university's presence has greatly influenced the county, attracting scholars, businesses, and cultural activities. Today, Champaign County remains a vibrant and prosperous area, with a strong emphasis on education, agriculture, and innovation.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Champaign County, Illinois.

  • 1833: Champaign County is established
  • 1835: First public land sales occur in the county
  • 1850: Population reaches 5,243
  • 1855: Illinois Central Railroad begins operating in Champaign County
  • 1868: University of Illinois is founded in Champaign
  • 1893: Urbana becomes the county seat
  • 1909: First paved road is constructed in the county
  • 1942: Chanute Air Force Base is established near Rantoul
  • 1954: Memorial Stadium is built at the University of Illinois
  • 1968: Interstate 57 opens, connecting Champaign County to Chicago
  • 2000: Champaign County's population reaches 179,669