List of city nicknames in Illinois

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A 4010 Diesel model (manufactured from 1960-1963) on display at the John Deere Pavilion in Moline, the home of John Deere. Moline calls itself the "Plow Capital of the World."

This list of city nicknames in Illinois compiles the aliases, sobriquets and slogans that Illinois cities are known by (or have been known by historically), officially and unofficially, to municipal governments, local people, outsiders, or their tourism boards or chambers of commerce. City nicknames can help in establishing a civic identity, helping outsiders recognize a community or attracting people to a community because of its nickname; promote civic pride; and build community unity.[1] Nicknames and slogans that successfully create a new community "ideology or myth"[2] are also believed to have economic value.[1] Their economic value is difficult to measure,[1] but there are anecdotal reports of cities that have achieved substantial economic benefits by "branding" themselves by adopting new slogans.[2]

Some unofficial nicknames are positive, while others are derisive. The unofficial nicknames listed here have been in use for a long time or have gained wide currency.

Nicknames by city[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Muench, David (December 1993). "Wisconsin Community Slogans: Their Use and Local Impacts" (PDF). University of Wisconsin Extension. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 9, 2013. Retrieved April 10, 2007. 
  2. ^ a b Andia, Alfredo (10 September 2007). "Branding the Generic City :)" (PDF). MONU – magazine on urbanism. Retrieved 14 January 2012. 
  3. ^ "History of Algonquin". Village of Algonquin, IL. 9 February 2009. Archived from the original on 3 August 2014. Retrieved 14 January 2012. 
  4. ^ "Aurora History - A Rapidly Growing City". About Our City. City of Aurora, IL. Retrieved 14 January 2012. Later, when the City was the first in the United States to use electric lights for publicly lighting the entire City, it achieved the nickname of 'City of Lights'. 
  5. ^ Schielke, Jeffery. "Our Town". Batavia History. City of Batavia. Retrieved 14 January 2012. 
  6. ^ Edwards, Jim; Edwards, Wynette (2000). "City of Energy Entrepreneurs". Batavia: From the Collection of the Batavia Historical Society. Chicago, IL: Arcadia. pp. 21–32. ISBN 978-0-7385-0795-8. 
  7. ^ a b "Community slogans about agriculture". ePodunk. Retrieved 14 January 2012. 
  8. ^ | Sesqui!
  9. ^, accessed December 9, 2015
  10. ^ | Twin City Guide
  11. ^ U.S. City Monikers, Tagline Guru website, accessed January 5, 2008
  12. ^ Daily Eastern News. Charleston is popularly referred to as Chuckvegas by Eastern Illinois University students.
  13. ^ City of Chester website. Chester was the home town of E. C. Segar, the creator of Popeye, and some characters in his cartoons were based on people of Chester.
  14. ^ Berman, John and Meewalla, Shani. When A Tattoo Goes Wrong, A Trend Develops. ABC News, April 7, 2007. Retrieved 2008-02-14.
  15. ^ Chicago Park District website
  16. ^ a b c "Chicago Nicknames". Chicago Public Library. Archived from the original on 11 February 2008. Retrieved 8 August 2013. 
  17. ^ 030909-MotorcoachMap
  18. ^ a b c The World Capital of Whatever, The New York Times by Harold Faber, September 12, 1993.
  19. ^ a b Claims to Fame - Food, ePodunk, accessed April 16, 2007.
  20. ^ City of Crystal Lake. Accessed August 18, 2007.
  21. ^ "Central Park skateboarders back to getting the boot - Mayor chases out those bored with their Fairview Park facility." Mike Frazier, Decatur Herald & Review, Saturday, November 11, 2006, p.A1
  22. ^ "ADM lunch puts soy in spotlight - The company spreads the word about food's health benefits." Paul Brinkmann, Decatur Herald & Review, Saturday, November 20, 1999 p.A1
  23. ^ City of Elgin Sustainability Action Plan, Version 2.1 (August 2011), City of Elgin website, accessed October 28, 2011
  24. ^ Elgin Fire Department 2006 Annual Report, City of Elgin website, accessed October 28, 2011
  25. ^ "A Brief History of Evanston". Evanston Public Library. Retrieved 2009-01-08. 
  26. ^ "City of Freeport, Illinois". City of Freeport, Illinois. Retrieved 29 April 2012. 
  27. ^ Claims to Fame - Birds, ePodunk, accessed April 16, 2007.
  28. ^ "History of DuPage County : Lombard". Retrieved 2016-12-29. 
  29. ^ Village of Huntley. Accessed August 18, 2007.
  30. ^ Joliet JackHammers website (accessed June 7, 2008)
  31. ^ a b c d Illinois Farmers' Institute (1919), Annual Report and Proceedings of the Twenty-fourth Annual Meeting Held in Joliet, Illinois, February 19, 20, and 21, 1919. "Joliet is known as 'stone city,' 'prison city,' 'steel city,' and city of 'snap and progress.'
  32. ^ a b Joliet, Illinois, Encyclopedia of Chicago
  33. ^ Tony Graf, Joliet’s oldest school building is a limestone classic, The Herald-News (published by Chicago Sun-Times), October 9, 2011
  34. ^ Joliet Central High School History, Joliet Township High School District 204 website, accessed October 28, 2011. Before 1935, the school's sports teams were known as "The Prison City Boys."
  35. ^ Joliet out to escape past ties to prison: City says its image is no longer behind bars, Chicago Tribune, August 13, 2006. "For the first time in nearly 150 years, calling Joliet a prison town would be just plain wrong, city officials contend."
  36. ^ Claims to Fame - Animals, ePodunk, accessed April 16, 2007.
  37. ^ Lombard Info, National University of Health Sciences, accessed April 21, 2007. "Held each year during the first three weeks in May, regardless of the vagaries of the growing season, Lilac Time is Lombard’s celebration of a 70-year-old horticultural tradition that has led to the town’s designation as “The Lilac Village,”"
  38. ^ Sloganville Awards, Tagline Guru website, accessed October 28, 2011
  39. ^ Louis Miglio, "A Geography Alumnus Fondly Remembers," Glacial Deposits, Volume 29, 2000-2001, Illinois State University, pages 5-7
  40. ^ Southern Illinois
  41. ^ City of Monmouth, IL - Fast Facts
  42. ^ Morton Pumpkin Festival Information, Morton Chamber of Commerce, accessed April 21, 2007. "Morton is the "Pumpkin Capital of the World". Home of Nestle/Libby's pumpkin packing plant, 80% of the world's canned pumpkin is processed here."
  43. ^ White Squirrel Wars, Roadside America, accessed April 21, 2007. "Olney, IL; Marionville, Missouri; Kenton, Tennessee; Brevard, North Carolina; Exeter, Ontario. Not one, but five towns use albino squirrels as their claims to fame, and none is particularly happy about the others."
  44. ^ City of Pana Illinois
  45. ^ a b c Barry Popik, Smoky City, website, March 27, 2005
  46. ^ Claims to Fame - Plants, ePodunk, accessed April 16, 2007.
  47. ^ Another Gem City Landing?, WGEM, April 10, 2007, accessed April 21, 2007. "QUINCY - It was an event that attracted thousands of people from around the world to the Gem City and then it moved to a different location -- Rantoul."
  48. ^ Willhite, Lindsey (4 August 2008). "Rugged 'Rantucky' tough starting spot for Illini". Daily Herald. Retrieved 14 January 2012. 
  49. ^ About Rockford, City of Rockford, Illinois website (accessed June 7, 2008)
  50. ^ The State Journal-Register: Seeking the origin of the term 'Springpatch'
  51. ^ St. Charles, Illinois Traffic Counts, City of St. Charles website, accessed December 6, 2010. "We're the Pride of the Fox, Come see why!"
  52. ^ Thomson Chamber of Commerce website (accessed June 8, 2008)
  53. ^ [1], City of Warrenville website
  54. ^ The History of Wilmington, IL, City of Wilmington website

External links[edit]