It's always fun to learn new facts that make you say "I didn't know that!" Here are some interesting pieces of trivia about Quincy and Hannibal that might surprise you.

  • Frasier's dad is a graduate of Quincy University

    The actor John Mahoney, who is well-known for playing Frasier and Niles' dad on 'Frasier,' is a graduate of Quincy University (then known as Quincy College). He got his masters from WIU in Macomb. Mahoney has also done a lot of voice work. He appeared in 'Antz,' 'The Iron Giant' and 'Atlantis: The Lost Empire.'

    Brad Barket, Getty Images
  • The Voice of Jiminy Cricket is a Hannibal native

    Cliff Edwards was famous as a singer and entertainer in the 20s and 30s. His recording of 'Singin' in the Rain' became a number-one song in 1929. In 1940, Edwards voiced the character Jiminy Cricket in Disney's 'Pinocchio.' Edwards was born in Hannibal, but left school and moved to St. Louis when he was 14 years old and began his singing career.

    Hulton Archive
  • The Villa Katherine is said to be haunted ... by a dog

    It is said that Quincy Junior High School is haunted, but that's not the only haunted place in Quincy. There are claims that the Villa Katherine is haunted by the ghost of Bingo, a Great Dane that belonged to the man that originally owned the castle.

    Kurt Parsons
  • Hannibal was once the second-largest city in Missouri

    Steamboat traffic, and especially railroad traffic with the Hannibal - St. Joseph Railroad, led to an economic boom in America's Hometown in the 1800's (before it was America's Hometown). By 1860, Hannibal had become the second-largest city in Missouri.

    Kurt Parsons
  • Quincy was once the second-largest city in Illinois

    Steamboat and railroads were also beneficial to Quincy. The city was one that did well during the Civil War and the years right after. In 1870, Quincy surpassed Peoria as the second-largest city in Illinois.

    Kurt Parsons
  • The Union occupied Hannibal during the Civil War

    During the Civil War, Hannibal - like the rest of Missouri - was divided between Confederate sympathizers, and those who supported the Union. The Union occupied Hannibal in an effort to keep the Hannibal - St. Joseph railroad open.

    Hulton Archive
  • Dick Brothers Brewery was once larger than Anheuser-Busch

    Anheuser-Busch may be responsible for today's King of Beers, but in the early 20th Century, Quincy's Dick Brothers Brewery produced more beer than the famous St. Louis brewery.

    Dave Lee
  • The Hannibal Free Public Library was the first free public library in the state

    There were libraries in Missouri before the Hannibal Free Public Library - in fact, there were libraries in Hannibal before the Hannibal Free Public Library - but the community of Hannibal passed a tax levy in 1889 to establish a library that would be free to the public. Prior to that time, libraries were open to members who paid dues. The Hannibal Free Public Library was the first free public library to be established in Missouri.

    Kurt Parsons
  • The Quincy Society of Fine Arts is America's first community arts council

    The Quincy Society of Fine Arts was established in 1947, and was the first community arts council in the country. The Quincy Society of Fine Arts works to expand the economy, strengthen education, and insure cost-effective arts services for citizens. They are also the publishers of the monthly Arts/Quincy magazine.

    Kurt Parsons
  • The Illinois Veterans Home is the oldest veterans home in Illinois

    There are four veterans homes in Illinois, but the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy is the largest and oldest in the state. There is a post office, bank, assembly hall, guest house, mini post exchange, chapel, cemetery, lake, animal park, museum, and several military-related historical sites on the grounds of the Veterans Home.

    Kurt Parsons