It was laid out in 1836, incorporated as a town under the name of Bloomington in 1839, and first chartered as a city, under its present name, in 1851.
He removed with his family to Bloomington, Illinois, in 1852; was educated at the Illinois Wesleyan University at Bloomington and at Centre College, Danville, Kentucky; and was admitted to the Illinois bar in 1857.
He spent two years in an academy at Corydon, Indiana, and one year at the Indiana State University at Bloomington, then studied law, and in 1854 was admitted to the bar.
Lincoln before the state convention at Bloomington of "all opponents of anti-Nebraska legislation" (the first Republican state convention in Illinois) made on the 29th of May a notable address known as the "Lost Speech."
On the 4th of October 1854 in Springfield, in reply to a speech on the Nebraska question by Douglas delivered the day before, Lincoln made a remarkable speech four hours long, to which Douglas replied on the next day; and in the fortnight immediately following Lincoln attacked Douglas's record again at Bloomington and at Peoria.