Quote from Illinois Libraries article, "Ethnic Dimension in Family History" by Loretto D. Szucs
Multitudes of Germans and Irish went to northern Illinois during the great immigration waves in the 1840s and 1850s. Germans, freeing themselves of the suppression of the democratic revolutions in their homelands, found great potential for using their skills and beginning a new life in Illinois farmlands and metropolitan areas.......A tabulation of the 1910 U.S. Population Census revealed that Germans ranked first in number among the foreign-born in Illinois.
Note: Some of the information shown in the topics below will be helpful only to those whose immigrant ancestors spent time in Cook County before coming to Winnebago or Boone Counties. It was not unusual for an immigrant to stay in Chicago until something "better" opened up elsewhere or until the crowded conditions in the city or the epidemics of illness encouraged movement.