The world's first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Building, was built in Chicago in 1884. It was only 10 stories tall, but it was the first building to use a steel frame to support its weight, which allowed it to be much taller than traditional buildings made of brick or stone.
Macon County, Illinois has a rich and diverse history, dating back to the early 19th century. The county was officially established on January 19, 1829, and was named after Nathaniel Macon, a North Carolina senator. Its early years were marked by rapid growth and development, with settlers from various backgrounds arriving to claim land and establish farms.

One of the key events in Macon County's history was the founding of the city of Decatur in 1829. Named after the famous naval hero Stephen Decatur, the city quickly became a major center for trade and industry. The construction of the Illinois Central Railroad in the 1850s further bolstered Decatur's growth, as the city became a major hub for transportation and manufacturing.

During the Civil War, Macon County played a significant role. Many of its residents enlisted in the Union Army, and the county's economy shifted towards supporting the war effort. Decatur became an important supply center, providing soldiers with munitions and provisions. Additionally, Camp Douglas, a training camp for Union soldiers, was established near Decatur.

In the years following the war, Macon County experienced continued growth in various sectors. Agriculture remained a vital part of the county's economy, with crops such as corn, soybeans, and wheat being cultivated. The manufacturing sector also thrived, with prominent industries including meatpacking, milling, and automotive manufacturing. Today, Macon County continues to be a vibrant community, with a diverse economy and a rich history that is celebrated and preserved.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Macon County, Illinois.

  • 1829: Macon County is established, named after Nathaniel Macon, a prominent North Carolina Senator
  • 1839: Decatur becomes the county seat
  • 1850: The Illinois Central Railroad reaches Decatur, spurring population growth and economic development
  • 1860: Decatur is incorporated as a city
  • 1861-1865: Macon County residents serve in the Civil War, with some joining the Union Army while others join the Confederate Army
  • 1875: The Wabash Railroad opens a division headquarters in Decatur, further boosting the local economy
  • 1920s: Macon County experiences a period of growth due to the expansion of manufacturing industries
  • 1940s-1950s: Decatur becomes known as the "Soybean Capital of the World" as soybean processing plants are established in the area
  • 1970s: Macon County experiences economic challenges, including plant closures and unemployment
  • 1993: The Clinton Landfill controversy emerges, raising concerns about groundwater contamination
  • 2000s: Efforts are made to revitalize the economy through diversifying industries and attracting new businesses