The World's Columbian Exposition, also known as the Chicago World's Fair, was held in Chicago in 1893. The fair was held to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the New World, and it attracted over 27 million visitors from around the world.
Located in southern Illinois, Massac County has a rich history that dates back thousands of years. The area was home to Native American tribes, namely the Shawnee and the Illinois, who utilized the region's natural resources for hunting, fishing, and agriculture. The arrival of French explorers in the 17th century brought about the first European presence in the area, as they established trading posts and engaged in fur trading with the Native Americans.

In 1757, Fort Massac was constructed by the French on the bluffs overlooking the Ohio River. The fort played a significant role in the French and Indian War as a strategic outpost. With the French defeat in the war, Fort Massac was eventually occupied by the British and then by American forces during the Revolutionary War. After the war, the fort was abandoned and fell into disrepair.

Massac County was officially established on February 8, 1843, named after the historic Fort Massac. It became the 48th county in the state of Illinois. The county's growth was influenced by its proximity to the Ohio River, which facilitated transportation and trade. Agriculture, particularly tobacco and corn production, became a major economic driver in the 19th century, with the rise of steamboat traffic on the river aiding commercial development.

During the Civil War, Massac County was divided, with some residents supporting the Union and others aligning with the Confederacy. The Battle of Belmont, a significant engagement in the early years of the war, took place just across the river in Missouri but involved troops from Massac County. After the war, the county experienced a shift towards industrialization, with the establishment of coal mines and manufacturing facilities.

Today, Massac County is a thriving community that cherishes its historical heritage. The preservation of Fort Massac State Park has allowed visitors to step back in time and explore the area's fascinating past. The county continues to embrace its agricultural roots while also diversifying its economy to include tourism and other industries.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Massac County, Illinois.

  • 1795: The Territory of Massac is established by the Virginia Legislature.
  • 1843: Massac County is officially recognized as a county in Illinois.
  • 1847: Metropolis becomes the county seat of Massac County.
  • 1860: The arrival of the Illinois Central Railroad brings economic growth to the county.
  • 1862: Fort Massac is established during the American Civil War.
  • 1873: The county courthouse in Metropolis is destroyed by a fire.
  • 1874: A new courthouse is constructed in Metropolis.
  • 1925: The Ohio River flood causes significant damage to Massac County.
  • 1937: The flood of the Ohio River causes major devastation in the county.
  • 1958: The construction of the Interstate 24 highway through Massac County begins.
  • 2002: Superman Square is dedicated in Metropolis to honor the city's famous fictional resident.
  • 2021: Massac County continues to thrive with a diverse economy and strong sense of community.