SPRINGFIELD ILLINOIS T-Shirt
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 2005, the city population was around 115,000, disregarding unincorporated and surburban areas.------------------he city is the site of a number of attractions centered around President Abraham Lincoln, who started his political career in Springfield. These include a national park site, the Lincoln Home Historic Site , as well as the preserved surrounding neighborhood; the Lincoln-Herndon Law Offices State Historic Site; the Old State Capitol State Historic Site; the newly built Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum; the train depot from where he departed to Washington; and his burial mausoleum. The Museum of Funeral Customs, located near Lincoln's tomb, also features exhibits related to the president's funeral. North of Springfield, near the village of Petersburg, is New Salem (Menard County), Illinois, a restored hamlet of log cabins recreating New Salem, where Lincoln lived as a young man. With the opening of the Presidential Library and Museum in 2004, the city has seen a number of prominent visitors, including Former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and the Emir of Qatar. ----------------------------- 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 among the best preserved and most complete of Frank Lloyd Wright's early "Prairie" houses. It was built in 1902-1904 and has many of the furnishings Wright designed for it. Springfield is known for its carillon and festival. In August, the city is the site of the Illinois State Fair. -------------------- A race riot in 1908 led to the founding of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) by a coalition of black and white citizens the following year. As the state capitol of Illinois, Springfield is home to nearly 150 lobbying associations, there being approximately 8 lobbyists for each member of the General Assembly.------------------- The Springfield campus of the University of Illinois, is located on the southeast side of the city. The city is also home to the Bunn company, known as a global leader in coffee-making equipment and supplies, and Legal Files Software, Inc., a leading legal case management software publisher. ---------------------------- Springfield is recognized as a health-care leader, its hospitals (Springfield Memorial Medical Center and St. John's Hospital) consistently ranked the best in the state outside of Chicago. St. John's Hospital, home of the Prairie Heart Institute, is the only hospital outside of Chicago to perform heart transplants. The city is home to the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine which is in the early stages of building a Cancer Institute in Springfield's Medical District, and the Springfield College of Pharmacy. Springfield College, and Lincoln Land Community College are also located in Springfield, as are the headquarters of major insurance companies Horace Mann and Franklin Mutual. Springfield is the seat of a Catholic diocese. Springfield serves as regional headquarters of Cingular and Wells Fargo.---------------The State Journal-Register is the city's daily newspaper. -------------------------- On March 12, 2006, the city was struck by two F2 tornadoes. The first system, which brought the two tornadoes, hit the city around 8:30pm, and a second, slightly weaker system affected the city around 1:30am on March 13, 2006. Because the first tornadoes inflicted major harm to the city's power infrastructure, the tornado siren system failed to operate during the second storm. No one died as a result of the weather, although some have suggested that if the second system had been stronger and caused tornadic activity, then casualties could have been suffered due to the lack of warning. Springfield received a federal grant to improve its tornado warning systems and new sirens have since been put in place. Although tornadoes are not uncommon in central Illinois, the March 12th tornadoes were the first to hit the actual city since 1957. ----------------------------- I-55 runs from north to south of Springfield while I-72, also known as US 36, runs from east to west. The city also lies along 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, which Demuzio represented and is about an hour from the capitol, to Springfield as the "Vince Demuzio Expressway." Springfield is also served by Amtrak passenger trains operating between Chicago and St. Louis and stopping at Union Station (Springfield), such as the Texas Eagle. Local mass transportation needs are met by a local bus service, the Springfield Mass Transit District (SMTD). ------------------------ Air service to the capital city is on the rise once again, with flights to Chicago O'Hare (United), Chicago-Midway (Big Sky Airlines), St. Louis (American), and Memphis (Northwest). Service to Washington, DC is scheduled to start sometime in the future.