German Valley, Illinois

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Coordinates: 42°12′54″N 89°28′39″W / 42.21500°N 89.47750°W / 42.21500; -89.47750
German Valley
German Valley, IL Post Office.JPG
Post office for German Valley
Nickname: The Valley
Country United States
State Illinois
County Stephenson
Township Ridott
Elevation 823 ft (251 m)
Coordinates 42°12′54″N 89°28′39″W / 42.21500°N 89.47750°W / 42.21500; -89.47750
Area 0.48 sq mi (1 km2)
 - land 0.48 sq mi (1 km2)
 - water 0.00 sq mi (0 km2)
Population 463 (2010)
Density 987.8 / sq mi (381 / km2)
Village President Mark Jewell
Postal code 61039
Area code 815
Location of German Valley within Illinois
Wikimedia Commons: German Valley, Illinois

German Valley is a village in Stephenson County, Illinois. German Valley is located four miles south of U.S. Route 20 between Freeport and Rockford. German Valley had a population of 463 at the 2010 census, down from 481 in 2000.


German Valley is located at 42°12′54″N 89°28′39″W / 42.21500°N 89.47750°W / 42.21500; -89.47750 (42.214993, -89.477454).[1]

According to the 2010 census, the village has a total area of 0.48 square miles (1.2 km2), all land.[2]


As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 481 people, 179 households, and 138 families residing in the village. The population density was 987.8 people per square mile (379.0/km²). There were 187 housing units at an average density of 384.0 per square mile (147.3/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 99.58% White, 0.21% Asian and 0.21% Pacific Islander. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.87% of the population.

There were 179 households out of which 41.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 66.5% were married couples living together, 6.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.9% were non-families. 19.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.69 and the average family size was 3.07.

In the village the population was spread out with 29.3% under the age of 18, 5.8% from 18 to 24, 33.5% from 25 to 44, 18.3% from 45 to 64, and 13.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 96.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.8 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $42,500, and the median income for a family was $48,750. Males had a median income of $31,111 versus $22,308 for females. The per capita income for the village was $18,564. About 6.4% of families and 6.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.7% of those under age 18 and 20.4% of those age 65 or over.

German-American State Bank robbery[edit]

Probably the most notorious crime to take place in the quiet little town of German Valley was the first robbery of the German-American State Bank. The robbery occurred in the spring of 1972, when four men entered the bank and requested help with obtaining a loan in order to purchase "a farm one mile north of Adeline".

One of the bank tellers working there that day thought their request was extremely strange since she and her family lived on the only farm that was "one mile north of Adeline", and the farm was not up for sale.

The teller, Karen Myers, quickly and quietly telephoned a friend and relayed the information about these strange customers. At first her friend thought Karen was only joking until one of the bank robbers came up behind Karen, put a gun to her back and told her to immediately hang up the phone.

All the bank employees were instructed to get inside the bank vault. The gunmen then told Karen to find a large money bag and empty all the tellers' cash drawers into it. Karen did as she was told and turned the bag over to the robbers.

The men quickly left after receiving the bag of cash, without harming any of the bank employees, and probably thinking that they had just made a clean getaway after robbing this small town bank.

Unbeknownst to the robbers, the friend that Mrs. Myers had called immediately contacted the police when their phone call had ended so abruptly. She told the police that she believed the bank was being robbed and explained about the strange phone call she had received from her friend who was one of the bank employees.

As soon as the robbers left the bank, Mrs. Myers contacted police to let them know of the robbery and she was able to give them a good description of the criminals. The description was then radioed to all available Ogle County Police Officers.

Upon hearing the description of the robbers, an officer was quickly able to apprehended them. The apprehension occurred in the somewhat larger small town of Mount Morris, just 15 miles from German Valley. The apprehension accurred within 30 minutes of the robbers leaving the crime scene.

After going 34 years without another robbery, the German-American State Bank was robbed twice in two weeks in July 2006.

German Valley Days[edit]

German Valley hosts its own town festival "German Valley Days" every summer. The German Valley Days celebration includes a car show, 5K Run/Walk, parade, stage entertainment, pig scramble, kiddie tractor pull, pork chop barbecue, pancake breakfast, water fights, inflatable rides, bingo, fireworks, contests, concessions and more![citation needed]


  1. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  2. ^ "2010 Census U.S. Gazetteer Files for Places – Illinois". United States Census. Retrieved 2012-10-13. 
  3. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.