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5 Fun Facts About March 9 In Illinois History

---Learn Every Day: IL Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history il To: 618-270-4005---

1. On March 9, 1832, the first railroad charter in Illinois was granted to the Northern Cross Railroad, which aimed to connect the Illinois River with Lake Michigan. While the project was never completed, it marked the beginning of the railroad era in Illinois.

2. March 9, 1867, marked the founding of Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. Originally named Bradley Polytechnic Institute, the school has grown to become a highly regarded private university.

3. In 1918, on March 9, the first case of the Spanish flu was reported in Illinois. The pandemic would go on to claim the lives of over 8,500 people in the state and millions worldwide.

4. On March 9, 1965, the first McDonald's restaurant in Illinois opened in Des Plaines. It was the ninth McDonald's location overall, and today the fast food chain has tens of thousands of restaurants worldwide.

5. Finally, March 9, 1984, was a historic day for the Illinois Democratic Party, as it held the first-ever caucus for a U.S. presidential election. The caucus system, which had been used for decades in Iowa, proved to be a pivotal moment in the primary campaign of Walter Mondale, who went on to secure the Democratic nomination.
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