State of Illinois
ORIGIN OF STATE NAME: French derivative of Iliniwek, meaning "tribe of superior men," an Indian group formerly in the region. NICKNAME: The Prairie State. SLOGAN: Land of Lincoln. CAPITAL: Springfield. ENTERED UNION: 3 December 1818 (21st). SONG: "Illinois." MOTTO: State Sovereignty–National Union. FLAG: The inner portion of the state seal and the word "Illinois" on a white field. OFFICIAL SEAL: An American eagle perched on a boulder holds in its beak a banner bearing the state motto; below the eagle is a shield resting on an olive branch. Also depicted are the prairie, the sun rising over a distant eastern horizon, and, on the boulder, the dates 1818 and 1868, the years of the seal's introduction and revision, respectively. The words "Seal of the State of Illinois Aug. 26th 1818" surround the whole. ANIMAL: White-tailed deer. BIRD: Cardinal. FISH: Bluegill. INSECT: Monarch butterfly. FLOWER: Native violet. TREE: White oak. MINERAL: Fluorite. LEGAL HOLIDAYS: New Year's Day, 1 January; Birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr., 3rd Monday in January; Lincoln's Birthday, 12 February; George Washington's Birthday, 3rd Monday in February; Memorial Day, last Monday in May; Independence Day, 4 July; Labor Day, 1st Monday in September; Columbus Day, 2nd Monday in October; Election Day, 1st Tuesday after the 1st Monday in November in even-numbered years; Veterans Day, 11 November; Thanksgiving Day, 4th Thursday in November; Christmas Day, 25 December. TIME: 6 AM CST = noon GMT.