A view of the Moon and the Earth as seen from space on August 21, 2017.
This map above has over 150 locations animated throughout the United States laid out on a grid. Each animation is one frame per minute. Each location doesn't represent a particular city, but the overall display gives you a better idea how the eclipse will look across the states.
Total Eclipse of the Sun in Illinois where greatest (maximum) duration will occur
Total Solar Eclipse on August 21, 2017 Animated Grid Map for Over 150 Points Across the United States on One Map
United States Naval Observatory (USNO) - 2 minutes and 44.3 seconds of darkness, a few mile south of Carbondale Illinois in the Shawnee National Forest. Mostly one and two lane roads in that area with the exact center located on farmland. This federal government entity has been around since the 1800s! USNO has known about the southern Illinois location since the year 2000...at least! NASA/Fred Espenak - 2 minutes and 40.2 seconds of darkness near Goreville Illinois, which too, is in the Shawnee National Forest. The exact spot is on farmland with two lane roads nearby. Straight-line distance from Goreville to "greatest duration" is under six miles. The separation from USNO's spot and NASA's is under twenty miles in southern Illinois. This "new" data was just mentioned for the first time on the NASA website in 2014.
Next map in the works- Georgia
A video showing you what a total eclipse of the Sun would like!
This video conveys, more than any others that I have seen, the excitement and wonder in viewing a total eclipse of the Sun. I don't speak Japanese, but you can tell from the lady reporter's excitement that she was glad that she was on this assignment (and on a cruise ship)! The constant beeping in the background is a shortwave radio picking up a time signal and broadcasting each second as a beep. Even on a cruise ship, people want accurate information about how long the eclipse lasts, and what time it begins and ends. It is also handy if you are taking photographs or movies. This cruise ship seems to have thought of everything to make this an enjoyable experience!