Historic Railroad Map of Illinois - 1861

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G. Woolworth Colton’s Railroad Map of Illinois, drawn, engraved and published by George Woolworth Colton in 1861.

Much building of railroads was occurring in Illinois during the time of this map's publishing. The map shows place names, counties and railroad network. Statements at the bottom of the map explore Illinois' current economic conditions and railroad system.

The agricultural resources of Illinois exceed those of any other State of the Union. 35,000,000 bushels of wheat, and 140,000,000 bushels of corn were produced in 1860. The products sold and sent out of the state exceeded 1,500,000 tons. The area of Illinois is about equal to that of England, and the soil is so rich that it will support twenty millions of people.

The deep, rich loam of the prairies is cultivated with such wonderful facility, that farmers of the Eastern and Middle Statesare moving to Illinois in great numbers. The population ten years since was 851,470 persons. By the census of 1860 the state has 1,723,663 persons - a gain of nearly one hundred thousand each year.

The state debt is only $10,106,393 14, and within the last three years it has been reduced $2,959,746 80; and we may reasonably expect that in ten years it will be entirely paid off.

One hundred and seven millions of dollars have been expended on 3,551 miles of railroads within the borders of Illinois; this has been done by private capital. Inasmuch as part of the income from these works with a valuable public fund in land go to diminish the state expenses, the taxes are light, and must every years decrease.

Illinois population is reported as 477,000 in 1840, 851,470 in 1850, and 1,723,663 in 1860.

Permanent school fund, by report of Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1860, $4,919,054 84. There are 8,221 school-houses, and, in 1860, 472,247 pupils attended the public schools.

The harvest of 1860 is declared at 35,000,000 bushels of wheat, and 140,000,000 bushels of corn.


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