Kankakee River

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Early History[edit | edit source]

The Kankakee River, a tributary of the Illinois River runs roughly 133 miles through northeastern Illinois and northwestern Indiana in the United States. Earlier in its history it provided a major portage between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River, but in more modern times the channel has slowly altered and at present it runs through farming and croplands. At this time it is primarily used for recreational activities and is home to the Kankakee River State Park located along its banks.

Migration and Transportation[edit | edit source]

Through the early 1800s, the river was a heavily used transportation and migration route for both European settlers and Native Americans. It was heavily used by French fur trappers. It was navigable by canoe and was part of an inland canoe route that connected the Great Lakes to the Illinois River and ultimately to the Mississippi River.

Areas Affected by the Kankakee[edit | edit source]

It flows in a meandering pattern through the following counties in Indiana:

  • St. Joseph County (South Bend)
  • LaPorte County
  • Starke County
  • Porter County
  • Jasper County
  • Lake County
  • Newton County
  • Kankakee County
  • Will County

And runs through the following areas of Illinois:

  • Kankakee County
  • Yellowhead Township
  • Momence Township
  • Pembroke Township
  • Sumner Township
  • Ganeer Township
  • Aroma Township (picks up the Iroquois River here)
  • Rockville Township
  • Boubonnais Township
  • Manteno Township
  • Limestone Township
  • Salina Township
  • Will County
  • Grundy County (joins the Des Plaines River here and forms the Illinois River)

Resource[edit | edit source]