Long before Illinois became a state, this land was occupied by French colonists, who constructed four forts here, starting in 1720. Today, you can visit the Fort de Chartres to get a glimpse into what life at this fort was like back in the 18th century.

For more information about the Fort de Chartres State Historic Site, visit its website, and keep up-to-date on the events here by following its Facebook page.

If you’re interested in visiting more Illinois historic sites, you might want to check out this mass gravesite that contains the bodies of 6,000 Confederate soldiers.

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