Episodes 14, and 15: Illinois!

Wow, I really got behind on writing this blog post! So let's do episodes 14 and 15.

Episode 14: Land Before Lincoln

First off, I mentioned old French settlements. Here's a map:



As you can see, no shortage of forts and towns and trading posts!

Here's 1850 population of Midwest states by origin-area:

As you can see, older-settled states had a large local-state-born population, as you'd expect. Meanwhile, the southern-born population probably outweighed the Yankee-born population in Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, and Illinois... although when you add in the Pennsylvanians and Ohioans and Hoosiers, probably free-state-settlers outnumbered slave-state-settlers for every state except Missouri. Speaking of Missouri: it had a substantial enslaved population, the only state included here to do so.

We can also see the foreign-born share in 1850: low in Indiana, a bit higher in Ohio, Illinois, Missouri, and Iowa, a bit higher still in Michigan, and wow that's a lot of foreigners in Wisconsin and Minnesota: over 1/3 of the population in each case!

Here's the same data, shown in absolute numbers:

As you can see, the native-born-and-residing population is by far the biggest group. But looking at Yankees specifically, we can see large groups in Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, and Wisconsin. When we look at southerners, we see large groups in Missouri, Indiana, Ohio, and Illinois. And for foreigners, the big groups are in Ohio, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Missouri.

Here's the promised map of the 1822 Illinois gubernatorial election:




Green indicates Coles, yellow is Browne (hardy har har), Red is Phillips, Blue is Moore.

And bam, that's episode 14! Now, on to episode 15.

Episode 15: The Keystone of Union

Let's start with some population estimates for Chicago.

But this has way too long a time period to see the data that interests us. So let's zoom in.

Here you can see that Chicago's growth really was remarkable. I should note as well that the declines you see for Cook County aren't really declines, per se, but are probably cases where my imputation method has failed to capture adequate YoY variation, or where Chicago annexed territory from Cook County.

Next up, Illinois' borders! Here's Illinois' original borders:



And here's a map of the Black Hawk War:



As you can see, overwhelmingly in Wisconsin or the Keystone Region parts of Illinois.

Here's growth rates in Chicago vs. the rest of Illinois:

As you can see, in most years Chicago is well above the rest of the state.

And of course we can look at the foreign-born population share as well:

And next we come to the 1870 origins of Chicagoans! So here we go for that:

Pretty much as I described it. I will note here, however, that about 40% of Chicago's Southern-born population was black as early as 1870, long predating the "Great Migration," and about 50% of the black population was southern.

Next up, we can look at political outcomes. Ignore the scales here, just notice the relative coloration of northern Illinois vs. the rest of the country. These are a variety of minor- or major-parties associated with abolitionism and Yankee-centric politics.


As you can see, in almost every case, northern Illinois, the Keystone Region, turned out to be a heavily anti-slavery region.

And finally, we can get to the Illinois governor's race of 1856. The three maps below show the total votes received by each candidate.

The Know-Nothing, with the most votes in the center, especially around the St. Louis suburbs (St. Louis was as or more heavily immigrant than Chicago).

The Democrat, with total votes fairly evenly distributed, with some large clusters in the mid-north and in Cook County:

And finally, the Republican, raking in a huge amount of votes in Cook County, and large vote tallies throughout the Keystone region, and then virtually no electoral support in Little Egypt:

The result, highlighted by winner of each county:

As you can see, the Republican did win a few southern counties around St. Louis, thanks to the Know-Nothings splitting the vote, and in the southeast, for reasons unclear to me. But the vast majority of Republican support came in the north, where heavy majorities in the Keystone Region propelled Bissell to victory, and ultimately enabled Lincoln to beat Stephen Douglas in his home state.


Okay, that's all for episodes 14 and 15! See you next time, for Michigan!