Saturday, February 12, 2011


Cook County-- Named for Daniel P. Cook, a pioneer lawyer, first Attorney General of the State of Illinois and Representative in Congress from 1819 until his death in 1827.

DuPage County -- The county took its name from the DuPage River, which was, in turn, named after a French fur trapper, DuPahze.

Will County -- Named for Dr. Conrad Will, a businessman involved in salt production in southern Illinois, and also a politician. Will was a member of the first Illinois Constitutional Convention and a member of the Illinois Legislature until his death in 1835.

Kane County -- Named for Elias Kent Kane, an attorney who helped draft the Illinois constitution and was the first Secretary of State. Kane was later elected to Congress and represented Illinois in the U.S. Senate until his death in 1835.

Further reading at Origin of County Names Illinois Blue Book, 2009-2010.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


By David McCarthy

The story is told of a certain Raymond Nusspickle who did not like his name. So he changed it. To Henry Nusspickle.

To do that in Illinois - change your name - it is necessary to reside in the state for six months, file a petition in the state court and publish notice in a local newspaper.

The petition must be signed, verified, and filed in the state court in the county of residence. The notice must be published three weeks in a row, and the first publication must occur at least six weeks before the petition is presented to the judge in open court.

The same petition can be used to change the name not only of the petitioner but also of the spouse and adult children of the petitioner (with their consent, of course) and minor children (if the change is in the best interest of the minors).

The disqualifying factors are what you would expect them to be, e.g., conviction for sexual abuse of a minor, for identity theft, or for any felony that is recent and unpardoned.