Who founded Illinois?
Illinois had been established as a territory for Native Americans well before being founded. The first founders of the modern state were Father Marquette and Louis Joliet.
While there is some debate about this, McKendree College (today McKendree University) seems to be the oldest; it is a private liberal arts college located in Lebanon, Illinois. It was founded in 1828 and originally called the Lebanon Seminary, run by the Methodist Church. The oldest public university is Illinois State University, founded in 1857 in Norman, Illinois, as a training school for teachers.