The statewide average rainfall for Illinois in the first half of July is only 0.8 inches. That is 1.2 inches below average or 40 percent of average. The statewide 1981-2010 average rainfall for the first half of July is 2.0 inches.
The driest July on record was July 1930 with only 1.01 inches. Next in line was 1916 with 1.23 inches and 1936 with 1.24 inches. More recently, 1983 came in 12th place with 1.93 inches and 1988 came in 25th place with 2.60 inches.
The statewide average temperature for the first half of July was 82.0 degrees, 6.2 degrees above average. The hottest July on record was 1936 at 83.1 degrees.
Based on preliminary data, there have been 186 new daily records set in July so far and another 33 tied previous records. You can check out the records yourself at http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/extremes/records/.