Illinois History -4/3

Illinois celebrated 200 years of statehood on December 3, 2018. Illinois agriculture has played a big part of our history. Learn more today about our Ag History!

Start with this video


Watch this video about how long Illinois dairy farmers have been on their farm.

Think of the generations in your family. You, your parents, your grandparents. See if your parents remember their grand parents or great-grandparents.

Cream, that comes from dairy cows can be used to make your own butter at home. If you have some cream at home, try this activity

John Deere and his tractors helped make Illinois famous. Listen to this read aloud!


In agriculture circles, you sometimes hear people talk about ‘Green’ versus ‘Red’. These colors are the colors of green-John Deere tractors, and red-International Harvester tractors. Both companies started in Illinois. Learn more about them in this video

Take a look at our Illinois History Ag Mag…to learn more about agriculture in Illinois.

Illinois has 102 counties. You know where you live, but do you know what county you live in? Who is your county named after….check out this document to find out who Illinois counties are named after.


Our look at dairy gives us a good place to think about what else dairy cows produce. Poop. It happens. Cows give milk and cows poop. Wonder what could happen with that poop? Watch this video about a methane digester.

After watching “The Power of Poop” video and the work on bioplastics from the Illinois Corn Growers yesterday, describe the link between science and agriculture.

A song about Illinois? How about the State Song of Illinois?

Assessment and Extended Responses


  1. Name and describe the generations in your family. (answers will vary)
  2. Why did most farms have a cow when Illinois was first settled? (to provide the family with milk

*Do you have any farmers in your family?  Who are they and what do they farm?

If you don’t have farmers in your family answer this question

*If you could have a farm, what plants and animals would you grow?


  1. Where was John Deere originally from?  (Vermont)
  2. Where was Cyrus McCormick originally from? (Virginia)
  3. Why did both Deere and McCormick find Illinois a good place to begin manufacturing ag products? (there were lots of farms and a large labor force.  Additionally, Illinois was centrally located with access to roads, rails and river systems for transportation.

*If you could name a county in Illinois, who would you name it after and why?

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