Illinois

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How a College Party Led to a $500K Invention

Simple DropCatch grabs bottle caps to ease cleanup

(Newser) - When a pair of college roommates were cleaning up after a party, there were bottle caps everywhere, so they picked them up with a magnet. Fast forward a few years, and the two have turned the magnet trick into a simple $60 invention—and they've sold $500,000 worth... More »

TV Anchor: I Have Just Months to Live

Illinois personality Dave Benton announces brain tumor

(Newser) - An Illinois TV anchor has shared some deeply personal news with viewers: Brain cancer has left him with just four to six months to live. He can't have surgery or radiation because the tumor is too big, he said on WCIA-TV , as the AP reports. But he's not... More »

All 7 Hostages Free, Safe in 20-Hour Chicago Ordeal

2 suspects arrested; officers treated for wounds

(Newser) - All of the hostages who were being held at a home near Chicago in a standoff that started early yesterday afternoon have been rescued, NBC Chicago reports. Four children had been released last night, and the two remaining children and an adult woman were found safe this morning after police... More »

Girl's Steer Sells for $100K

Illinois 12-year-old breaks state record

(Newser) - Not a bad payday for a 12-year-old: Shaelye Varner showed off her grand champion steer at the Illinois State Fair this week, then sold it at auction for a whopping $100,000—shattering last year's fair record of $62,000. AT&T, Monsanto, and DeKalb Asgrow combined to bid... More »

Note From Lincoln Found in Racist Book

Though he rejected the book's argument: curator

(Newser) - Abraham Lincoln perused a book of racist "science" before he was president and his note inside is proof, a museum says. The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library confirms—by way of Lincoln's unusual style of writing the letters E and N—that one of the most popular Americans wrote... More »

Cops: Man Strangles Roomie Over 3 Cookies

Illinois man got mad when Chips Ahoy cookies went missing

(Newser) - A woman who ate her roommate's cookies got a little surprise Wednesday when he allegedly flew into a rage and tried strangling her, Gawker reports. Police say that Allen Hall, 23, discovered the three missing Chips Ahoy cookies eaten by his 49-year-old roommate for breakfast. He then repeatedly threatened... More »

Archaeologists Seek Home of Mormon Founder's Father

Illinois dig unearths 10K years of history

(Newser) - Archaeologists in Nauvoo, Ill., are searching for a key site in the history of America's biggest homegrown religion. Over the last few years, some 10,000 items—including buttons, window glass, and bits of pottery—have been found by a team trying to find the former home of the... More »

Protesters Shut McDonald's HQ; 138 Arrested

Expect more ruckus at shareholders meeting today

(Newser) - It looks like a win for protesters who took to McDonald's yesterday to demand $15 an hour for fast-food workers—at least, it's a win for those who didn't end up in jail. McDonald's was forced to close a main building at its headquarters in Oakbrook,... More »

Why States Are Worried About Your Face Wash

Plastic 'microbeads' prompt environmental concern

(Newser) - Your face wash may be bad for the environment, and several states are trying to do something about it. The problem is "microbeads," minuscule pieces of plastic about the size of Abe Lincoln's eye on a penny, Time reports. They're found in all kinds of products... More »

Half of Illinois Wants to Leave State

People in Montana, Hawaii, Maine want to stay put, poll finds

(Newser) - If everybody in America had the opportunity to pack up and move to the state of their choice, Illinois, Connecticut, and Maryland would empty out, according to a new Gallup poll . Around half of residents in all three states said they would relocate to another state given the chance, with... More »

High Schoolers 3D-Print a Hand for 9-Year-Old

Illinois girl was born without fingers on left hand

(Newser) - A 9-year-old born without fingers on one hand is getting a gift from Illinois high school students: a new hand, Fox News reports. The students are 3D-printing the prosthetic device, which works through wrist movement, mystateline.com notes. Typically, prosthetics can run up to $50,000, says Kylie Wicker's... More »

Guy Hits Illinois Guv Hopeful With Sex Harassment Suit

Treasurer Dan Rutherford's gubernatorial campaign might be in trouble

(Newser) - One part of the lawsuit is kind of a yawner, politically speaking: A former employee of the state treasurer's office in Illinois says he was pressured to work on his boss' campaign for governor on company time, reports the Chicago Tribune . It's the other part that's generating... More »

Customer Gives $5K Tips to 3 Waitresses

After overhearing them discussing their bills

(Newser) - Three Illinois waitresses didn't pass off any extra food or give their customer any special treatment. What that customer saw Saturday was a special need for the young women, so she gave each of them a $5,000 check. "I wasn't even waiting on her," says... More »

Superbug Outbreak Linked to Dirty Tools

NDM hung onto endoscopes despite rigorous disinfection

(Newser) - Centers for Disease Control officials were surprised by last year's sudden spike in cases of NDM CRE, a drug-resistant superbug, in northeastern Illinois. And they were even more surprised when they discovered a common link between the patients: They had a history of endoscopic liver and pancreas exams. It... More »

Chinese Spy Stole Iowa Corn Seeds: Feds

FBI tracked alleged corporate spy through corn fields

(Newser) - Corporate espionage ... in an Iowa cornfield? Federal agents caught an alleged Chinese spy last week trying to smuggle highly valuable "inbred" cord seeds out of the country, prosecutors say. Mo Hailong is accused of stealing the seeds from fields in Illinois and Iowa and trying to evade FBI agents... More »

Dead Dad's Sealed Letters to Kids Lost in Tornado

Annmarie Klein's brother gave her the letters before his 2005 death

(Newser) - Annmarie Klein knows she's blessed to have survived the tornado that leveled her family's central Illinois home, and she understands most of the things they lost—the Jacuzzi, 60-inch TVs, diamond jewelry, the convertible—can be replaced. That's not true for a mint green box that contained... More »

Amid Tornado Cleanup, Hope Arrives Via Led Zeppelin

Pastor's husband finds album sleeve from 'Houses of the Holy'

(Newser) - When your town is decimated by a tornado, you'll take solace wherever you can find it. In Gifford, Ill., that just happened to be in form of a sleeve to Led Zeppelin's Houses of the Holy album—found, of course, by the pastor's husband in the rubble... More »

Dying Woman Gets Last Wish: Right to Marry

Couple won't have to wait for Illinois law to kick in

(Newser) - A federal judge has decided to allow a lesbian couple in Illinois to get married before death splits them up. Gov. Pat Quinn signed a same-sex marriage bill into law last week, but it doesn't allow weddings to begin until June, which might be too late for Vernita Gray... More »

Illinois Is 16th State to OK Gay Marriage

'Triumph of democracy' as church attempts exorcism

(Newser) - Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn invoked Abraham Lincoln as he signed a marriage equality bill into law, making the state the 16th to legalize gay marriage—and the third in the space of a month, after Hawaii and New Jersey. Lincoln "said our nation was conceived in liberty," the... More »

Thousands Homeless as Midwest Reels From Tornadoes

6 dead as damage from scores of twisters still being assessed

(Newser) - The extent of destruction is still unknown after scores of tornadoes ripped through the Midwest yesterday , killing at least six people and decimating entire neighborhoods in the hardest-hit towns in Illinois. The National Weather Service says the tornadoes were spawned by an unusually strong and fast-moving storm system that moved... More »

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