|City of DeKalb|
|Nickname(s): Barb City|
|• Mayor||John Rey|
|• City||14.81 sq mi (38.4 km2)|
|• Land||14.65 sq mi (37.9 km2)|
|• Water||0.16 sq mi (0.4 km2)|
|Elevation||879 ft (268 m)|
|Population (2010 Census)|
|• Density||3,481.1/sq mi (1,341.4/km2)|
|• Urban||68,545 |
|Time zone||CST (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
DeKalb // is a city in DeKalb County, Illinois, United States. The population was 43,862 according to the 2010 census. The city is named after decorated German war hero Johann de Kalb, who died during the American Revolutionary War.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (July 2009)|
Founded in 1837, DeKalb remained a small community until the arrival of the Chicago and North Western Transportation Company in 1853. DeKalb's central location brought easier shipping of crops and access to larger markets. Agriculture was the primary economic activity until 1873-4 when farmer Joseph Glidden developed barbed wire and began commercial mass production of his new invention. Glidden sold half of his interest to hardware merchant Isaac L. Ellwood and together the two formed the Barb Fence Company.
Two months after Glidden filed his application for a patent, lumber salesman Jacob Haish also applied for a patent and on June 25, 1874 ran interference papers against Glidden's patent. After several years of legal wrangling, in 1877 Glidden's patent won and Glidden was declared the "Father of Barbed Wire".
In 1865, H. B. Gurler moved to DeKalb, and later attempted to create high-grade milk. Gurler began shipping his "Pure Milk" to Chicago in 1895.
The founding of Northern Illinois State Normal School in 1895 added education to DeKalb's landscape. It later became Northern Illinois University, which is known for its business, nursing, education, engineering, and music programs.
The Melville Clark Piano Company started construction of a factory building in 1904. When it was completed in April 1905, it was a three-story, 300 x 500-foot building. Wurlitzer Pianos (and organs) were produced in this factory until December 1972.
Agriculture again came to the forefront with the creation of the DeKalb County Farm Bureau in 1912, one of the first organizations of its kind. In the 1930s, the DeKalb AgResearch Corporation (today MONSANTO) marketed its first hybrid seed corn.
Today DeKalb has a thriving music and arts culture.
DeKalb is located at (41.931274, -88.750151).
According to the 2010 census, the city has a total area of 14.81 square miles (38.4 km2), of which 14.65 square miles (37.9 km2) (or 98.92%) is land and 0.16 square miles (0.41 km2) (or 1.08%) is water.
The Kishwaukee River flows northward through the city of DeKalb, Illinois.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to 2007 Kishwaukee River Flood.|
On August 24, 2007, the Kishwaukee River at DeKalb, Illinois crested at 15.27 feet (4.65 m) (all time record 15.8 feet (4.8 m)) causing major flooding. This was only the second time the river rose above 15 feet (4.6 m) since the level of the river has been recorded.
DeKalb is governed by a Council-Manager government. Policy is developed by an elected City Council then implemented by an appointed professional City Manager. DeKalb's City Council is made up of a Mayor elected at-large and seven alderpersons elected by ward. Each serves a four-year term, with half the council being elected every two years. A City Clerk is also elected every four years who serves as the official record keeper of the city. The Clerk is also the primary FOIA – or Freedom of Information Act – officer for the city. City council meetings are held the second and fourth Mondays of every month.
|This section requires expansion. (June 2008)|
DeKalb is home to Northern Illinois University, the city's largest employer and the third largest campus in the state. Other large employers include KishHealth (a regional medical group centered around Dekalb's Kishwaukee Hospital), General Electric, Monsanto (originally as DeKalb Corn), the local school district, and a large retail district along Hwy. 23 (and shared with Sycamore) that includes Walmart, Target, Lowes, Best Buy, Carson's, Sears, Kohl's, Ross, and dozens of other chain and local stores.
DeKalb is also home to warehouses for several major companies, including Target, 3M, Nestlé, and Panduit, in part due to Dekalb's proximity to major highways such as I-88 and I-39. 3M's complex serves as the distribution hub for five of 3M’s six business units and export operations to North America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.
In 1984, the intersection of two streets in a popular NIU housing district in Dekalb begot the name of a regional consulting firm called "Greenbrier & Russel," (subsequently acquired by Fujitsu Consulting in 2006). In 2011, DeKalb was the broadcast base of Up and In: The Baseball Prospectus Podcast with Kevin Goldstein and Jason Parks.
The DeKalb Park District is responsible for the 44 parks and recreation facilities in DeKalb. The DeKalb Park District was established in 1935 through the initiative of members of the League of Women Voters, to address the need for a public swimming pool in the community. The City of DeKalb gave the first four parks to the District: Annie’s Woods, Huntley Park, Liberty Park, and Hopkins Park. By 1960, the District had eight parks and by 1970 twelve. Initially the main services provided focused on swimming and use of the outdoor parks. But as lifestyles changed, so did the District.
In the mid 1960’s the City gave the Ellwood House mansion to the District. In 1970, the park district hired its first full time executive director and by 1980 the district had pool, acquired Haish Gymnasium and Buena Vista, a nine-hole golf course. In 1985, the park district purchased River Heights, a second nine-hole golf course, which was later developed into an 18-hole course.
New parks were acquired as conservation areas in order to preserve floodplain lands and wildlife habitat. Other parks were established as community-wide active recreation facilities designed to serve all types of recreational uses. In addition to this system of parks the District established the Kishwaukee Kiwanis pathway system totaling over 8 miles in length, connecting DeKalb with Sycamore and the Great Western Trail to the east.
In 2000 the District opened the Sports and Recreation Center, a multi-function facility that features in indoor field of over 1 acre, clear-span space with synthetic field turf. The park district provides year-round athletic and recreation programs including day camps, youth baseball and softball, adult softball leagues both indoors and outdoors, swimming lessons, golf lessons, karate, tennis, adult and youth basketball leagues, indoor soccer, fitness classes, and preschool to name a few.
Today the DeKalb Park District park system includes 44 parks totaling over 700 acres: community parks, neighborhood parks, passive parks and linear parks. Notable parks and facilities include:
- River Heights Golf Course
- Buena Vista Golf Course
- Hopkins Park Pool and Community Center
- Nehring Center for Culture and Tourism
- Ellwood House Museum and Park
- Kishwaukee Hospital
|Census Quickfacts |
As of the census of 2000, there were 39,018 people, 13,081 households, and 6,566 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,093.9 people per square mile (1,194.7/km²). There were 13,619 housing units at an average density of 1,079.9 per square mile (417.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 73.00% White, 9.08% African American, 0.24% Native American, 4.62% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 4.35% from other races, and 2.09% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 9.04% of the population.
There were 13,081 households out of which 25.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 37.0% were married couples living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 49.8% were non-families. 29.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 3.02.
In the city the population was spread out with 16.9% under the age of 18, 39.2% from 18 to 24, 23.8% from 25 to 44, 12.0% from 45 to 64, and 8.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 23 years. For every 100 females there were 97.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $35,153, and the median income for a family was $53,017. Males had a median income of $36,255 versus $26,422 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,261. About 9.0% of families and 21.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.2% of those under the age of 18 and 5.4% of those age 65 or over.
There are 10 public schools, 1 private school, 1 university, and 1 public library. 
Northern Illinois University
Northern Illinois University (NIU) was founded in DeKalb as the Northern Illinois State Normal School in 1895. NIU is a comprehensive teaching and research institution with total enrollment around 23,000 (including about 17,000 undergraduates and 300 law school students), which makes NIU the third largest campus in Illinois. Notable NIU alumni include Dan Castellaneta (the voice of Homer Simpson and Krusty the Clown), Jimmy Chamberlin (The Smashing Pumpkins drummer), former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert, former Labor Secretary W. Willard Wirtz, Oscar-nominated actress Joan Allen in Pleasantville (film), former NFL players Michael Turner and Ryan Diem, Steve Harris from David E. Kelley's legal Drama The Practice.
DeKalb is served by both public and private school systems. DeKalb Community Unit School District 428 operates seven elementary schools (Grades K-5), Clinton Rosette and Huntley Middle Schools (Grades 6-8), and DeKalb High School (Grades 9-12). DeKalb is also home to St. Mary's Catholic Grade School (Grades K-8).
DeKalb is the location of both a toll plaza and an oasis on Interstate 88. The oasis includes restaurants and a gas station. DeKalb is 30 miles (48 km) west of Aurora and 65 miles (105 km) west from downtown Chicago. The local Voluntary Action Center provides two types of transportation services, TRANS-VAC and MED-VAC. TRANS-VAC provides transportation to activities and businesses in DeKalb County and has two bus routes (the green line and blue line) that runs a regular hourly route Monday through Friday and some limited evening hours for individuals with special needs. MED-VAC provides transportation to out-of-town medical appointments. The NIU Huskie Bus Line serves NIU and the surrounding DeKalb area. It has the second largest ridership-per-mile of any bus system in Illinois.
DeKalb Taylor Municipal Airport (DTMA) or (KDKB), serving the general aviation community, is located at 3232 Pleasant Street, DeKalb, Illinois.
DeKalb is partnered with Sycamore, Illinois, which is just north of DeKalb and the county seat of their county (DeKalb County).
- Charles I. Barber, architect, born in DeKalb
- George Franklin Barber, architect, born in DeKalb
- A. J. Bramlett, former professional basketball player for Cleveland Cavaliers
- Cindy Crawford, supermodel; in 1995, Forbes magazine named her the highest-paid model
- Isaac L. Ellwood, rancher, businessman and barbed wire entrepreneur
- Fred Eychaner, media mogul and philanthropist
- Joseph Glidden, farmer who patented barbed wire in 1874, which changed the development of the American West
- Jacob Haish, one of the inventors of barbed wire
- Barbara Hale, film actress and Emmy Award-winning co-star of Perry Mason television series
- Mike Heimerdinger, assistant coach for several NFL teams
- Judas Iscariot, a black metal band
- Richard Jenkins, actor (Six Feet Under, Cheaper by the Dozen), nominated in 2008 for Academy Award for Best Actor (The Visitor), lives in Cumberland
- Alan and Dale Klapmeier, co-founders of the Cirrus Aircraft Corporation, inducted into National Aviation Hall of Fame (2014), grew up in DeKalb
- Karl Nelson, offensive tackle for the New York Giants
- Mel Owens, linebacker for the L.A. Rams
- Richard Powers, author
- Evar Swanson, baseball player for Chicago White Sox (1932–1934)
- W. Willard Wirtz, Secretary of Labor; his DeKalb home is preserved on the NIU campus
- Haish Memorial Library
- Kishwaukee River
- Northern Illinois University
- Northern Illinois University shooting
- 2010 Census Urban Area List
- Chicago and North Western Railway Company (1908). A History of the Origin of the Place Names Connected with the Chicago & North Western and Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha Railways. p. 63.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "Places: Illinois". 2010 Census Gazetteer Files. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-05-03.
- South Branch Kishwaukee River at DeKalb, Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service, National Weather Service. Retrieved 25 August 2007.
- "Why Dekalb County?". DeKalb County Economic Development Corporation. Retrieved 5 June 2014.
- "Executive Profile - Eric Wasowicz". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 5 June 2014.
- "Fujitsu Consulting Acquires Illinois-based Greenbrier & Russel". Retrieved 5 June 2014.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Northern Illinois University". Forbes. Retrieved 5 June 2014.
- "Law School - Northern Illinois University". US News and World Report. Retrieved 5 June 2014.
- Official Website
- DeKalb Chamber of Commerce
- DeKalb Corn Fest
- Downtown DeKalb CORN-struction Fest
- DeKalb Park District
- DeKalb Public Library
- Northern Illinois University
- History of DeKalb
- DeKalb County Youth Service Bureau