Northwest Quiz: Illinois or Wisconsin?

This may be “flyover country,” but our region has led the nation through many important milestones, both in social movements and product innovations. See if you can figure out which state each occasion took place, marking I for Illinois, or W for Wisconsin.

1. ______ First state to ratify the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery, in 1865.

2. ______ First state to ratify the 19th Amendment, for Women’s Suffrage, in 1919.

3. ______ The first cellphone was invented here.

4. ______ The Republican Party first formed in this state, in 1854.

5. ______ The first successful open-heart surgery happened here, performed by the first African-American cardiologist.

6. ______ This was the first U.S. state to decriminalize homosexuality, in 1961.

7. ______ The first skyscraper in the world was built here.

8. ______ The first American kindergarten formed in this state in 1856.

9. ______ The Ferris Wheel was invented here.

10. _____ In 1867, the first typewriter came into use in this state.

11. _____ The first auto race happened here in 1878.

12. _____ In 1932, this state enacted the first unemployment compensation law.

13. _____ Both the blender and malted milkshakes were developed in this state.

14. _____ The first American woman awarded a Nobel Peace Prize lived here.

15. _____ Earth Day, now celebrated worldwide, was founded in this state.

Quiz Answers

1. I; Illinois was first to ratify the 13th Amendment ending slavery.
2. W; Wisconsin was first to ratify the 19th Amendment for Women’s Suffrage.
3. I; The first cellphone was invented in Schaumburg in 1973.
4. W; Former Whigs formed the Republican Party to counter the “tyranny of President Andrew Jackson.”
5. I; The first successful open-heart surgery was performed in Chicago by the first black cardiac surgeon, Daniel Hale Williams.
6. I; Illinois was the first state to decriminalize homosexuality, in 1961. (Wisconsin was the first to pass a statewide Gay Rights law in 1982).
7. I; The 10-story Home Insurance Building, located in Chicago, became the world’s first skyscraper.
8. W; Margarethe Meyer Schurz opened the first U.S. kindergarten in 1856 in Watertown, Wis.
9. I; The first Ferris Wheel was invented in Illinois and made its debut at the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago.
10. W; Milwaukee newspaperman Christopher Latham Sholes invented the typewriter.
11. W; The first auto race ran from Green Bay to Madison and was organized by the Wisconsin legislature in 1878.
12. W; The first Unemployment Compensation law was enacted in Wisconsin during the Great Depression in 1932.
13. W; Polish immigrant Stephen Poplawski invented the blender in Racine, Wis.
14. I; Cedarville, Ill., native Jane Addams was the first woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.
15. W; Earth Day was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, of Wisconsin, in 1970 after a massive oil spill on the California coastline.