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West Region

Called River Country, this region is dominated by the Mississippi, which provides the border with Illinois. Interstate 80 traverses the northern tier from east to west. I74 runs southeast from Galesburg through Peoria, forking with I155 headed south. I72 loops through the southern tier. Peoria is the region's major urban area.

Located at Bishop Hill on a five-acre tract, the Bishop Hill State Historic Site commemorates a Swedish communal settlement with five museums. Skills and crafts of colony life are demonstrated, and 16 of the buildings have been restored. Twenty-five shops include antiques, imports and handicrafts. Bishop Hill Museum contains an outstanding collection of early American primitive paintings by Olof Krans, recognized as one of America's foremost folk artists.

North of Cherry, the Cherry Mine Disaster Holy Trinity Miners Memorial enshrines the memory of 259 miners killed in one of the worst U.S. mine disasters, in 1909.

Eureka is home to the Ronald Reagan Museum in the Cerf Center, Eureka College campus. Reagan's former school features mementos from his acting career through his presidency. A museum and peace garden are part of the Ronald Reagan Trail, stretching from Eureka to Dixon and Tampico. In Moline, the John Deere Pavilion houses exhibits on farming, food and agricultural equipment with an interactive flair. The Joseph Smith Historic Center in Nauvoo displays the properties of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints' founder and his family. The gravesites of Joseph, Emma and Hyrum Smith are here

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