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Copyright © 2009 by Open Horizons and John Kremer
Last modified: 11/26/08

Hot Times, Cool Places

Illinois Vacation Fun Facts

Famous Illnoisians

These are just a few of the famous people who were either born in Illinois or spent some important time in Illinois.

Saul Alinsky, civic organizer and criminologist

Moises Alou, baseball player

Steve Bartman, stupid baseball fan

Saul Bellow, novelist

Cedric Benson, football player

Halle Berry, actress

Ray Bradbury, science fiction author

Lance Briggs, football player

Alex Brown, football player

Mike Brown, football player

Mark Buehrle, baseball player

Dick Butkas, football player

Harry Caray, baseball announcer

Kyle Chandler, actor

Brad Childress, football coach

Harry “Flash” Clarke, football player

Jose Contreras, baseball player

Richard Daley, Chicago mayor and Democratic leader

Richard Daley Jr., Chicago mayor

Henry Darger, novelist

John Deere, farm implement manufacturer

Richard Dent, football player

Everett Dirksen, U.S. senator

Mike Ditka, football coach

Stephen Douglas, U.S. senator and presidential candidate

Richard Driehaus, financier

Dave Duerson, football player

Dale Susan Edmonds, author

Enrico Fermi, physicist

Jason Fried, founder of

Betty Goldstein Friedan, author of The Feminist Mystique and founder of the National Organization for Women

Freddy Garcia, baseball player

Jon Garland, baseball player

Ulysses S. Grant, U.S. president

Daniel Grissom, author

Rex Grossman, football player

Ozzie Guillen, baseball manager

Gene Hackman, actor

George Halas, football coach

Dan Hampton, football player

William Rainey Harper, founder of the University of Chicago

Tommie Harris, football player

Paul Harvey, radio broadcaster

Dennis Hastert, U.S. speaker of the house

Hugh Hefner, playboy and publisher

Jennifer Hudson, singer and actress

Henry Hyde, U.S. representative

Shoeless Joe Jackson, baseball player

John H. Johnson, publisher

Tank Johnson, football player

Thomas Jones, football player

Nelson Knitting, folk artist, sock monkeys

Paul Konerko, baseball player

Arthur Laffer, economist, developer of the Laffer Curve

Ann Landers, advice columnist

Derrek Lee, baseball player

Barbara Lehman, children's book author and illustrator

Abraham Lincoln, U.S. president

Greg Maddox, baseball player

Paul Marcinkus, archbishop

Jay Mariotti, sports columnist

William “Bat” Masterson, lawman and columnist

Jim McMahon, football player

Donovan McNabb, football player

Muhsin Muhammad, football player

Barack Obama, U.S. senator and president

Chris O'Donnell, actor

Adewale Ogunleye, football player

Kyle Orton, football player

Sara Paretsky, mystery novelist

Walter Payton, football player

William “the Refrigerator” Perry, football player

A.J. Pierzynski, baeball player

Jeremy Piven, actor

Mark Prior, baseball player

Aramis Ramirez, baseball player

Ronald Reagan, U.S. president

Salli Richardson, actress

Ron Rivera, football player and coach

Marcus Robinson, football player

Dan Rostenkowski, U.S. congressman

Johnny Sain, baseball player

Gale Sayers, football player

Mike Singletary, football player

Lovie Smith, football coach

Sammy Sosa, football player

Sufjan Stevens, composer

Adlai Stevenson, Illinois governor and presidential candidate

Leo Szilard, physicist

John Tait, football player

David Terrell, football player

Frank Thomas, baseball player

Charles Tillman, football player

Clyde Tombaugh, astronomer and discover of Pluto

Brian Urlacher, football player

Vince Vaughn, actor

Dwyane Wade, football player

Todd Walker, baseball player

Harold Washington, Chicago mayor

James Watson, discover of DNA

Willye White, track-and-field star

Chris Widger, baseball player

Otis Wilson, football player

Oprah Winfrey, TV talk show host, actress, producer, book author, billionaire

Shelley Winters, actress

Kerry Wood, baseball player

John Kremer, Travel Guide

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