Williamson County, Illinois

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Williamson County, Illinois
Williamson County Courthouse in Marion.jpg
Williamson County Courthouse in Marion
Map of Illinois highlighting Williamson County
Location in the state of Illinois
Map of the United States highlighting Illinois
Illinois's location in the U.S.
Founded 1839
Named for Williamson County, Tennessee
Seat Marion
Largest city Marion
Area
 • Total 444 sq mi (1,150 km2)
 • Land 420 sq mi (1,088 km2)
 • Water 24 sq mi (62 km2), 5.4%
Population
 • (2010) 66,357
 • Density 158/sq mi (61/km²)
Congressional district 12th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Williamson County is a county located in the southern part of the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 census, it had a population of 66,357.[1] Its county seat is Marion.[2]

Williamson County is included in the Carbondale-Marion, IL Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is located in an area known as Little Egypt.

Williamson is a rapidly growing county in the Metro Lakeland area and is located 88 miles (142 km) southeast of St. Louis, MO. Its location at the intersection of Interstate 57, Interstate 24, and Illinois Route 13, a main east-west 4-lane expressway, gives it access to the major communities of Murphysboro, Carbondale, Carterville, Herrin, Marion, and Harrisburg. Although the Williamson County population is only 66,357, it is located in the heart of the Metro Lakeland area of Jackson-Williamson Counties where 120,000 citizens of Illinois make their home. Carbondale (14 miles west), Herrin and Marion are the key urban areas in Metro Lakeland, with a combined population of over 65,000. Over 235,000 people live within 35 miles (56 km).

History[edit]

Williamson County was formed out of Franklin County on February 28, 1839, and was named for Williamson County, Tennessee.[3]

Williamson County is often referred to as "Bloody Williamson" due to several outbreaks of violence that have few parallels in American history.[4] These include the following: the Bloody Vendetta, 1876; the Carterville Massacre, 1899; Coal Strike, 1906; The Herrin Massacre, 1922; the Klan War, 1924–1926; the Birger/Shelton Gang War, 1926.

The Illinois National Guard was deployed repeatedly during the 1920s to separate the warring parties and attempt to keep order.

As with the entire United States, severe weather in Williamson County is not uncommon. The northwest section of the county was obliterated by the Tri-State Tornado of 1925. The county was also struck by 2 tornadoes on May 29, 1982 killing 10 people in the Marion, Illinois tornado outbreak. On May 8, 2009, the cities of Carterville, Herrin, and Marion were severely damaged by the May 2009 Southern Midwest derecho.

Geography[edit]

Map of Christian County, Illinois

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 444 square miles (1,150 km2), of which 420 square miles (1,100 km2) is land and 24 square miles (62 km2) (5.4%) is water.[5]

Adjacent counties[edit]

National protected area[edit]

Transportation[edit]

Major highways[edit]

Airport[edit]

Williamson County Regional Airport is an airport.

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1840 4,457
1850 7,216 61.9%
1860 12,205 69.1%
1870 17,329 42.0%
1880 19,324 11.5%
1890 22,226 15.0%
1900 27,796 25.1%
1910 45,098 62.2%
1920 61,092 35.5%
1930 53,880 −11.8%
1940 51,424 −4.6%
1950 48,621 −5.5%
1960 46,117 −5.2%
1970 49,021 6.3%
1980 56,538 15.3%
1990 57,733 2.1%
2000 61,296 6.2%
2010 66,357 8.3%
Est. 2013 66,924 0.9%
U.S. Decennial Census[6]
1790-1960[7] 1900-1990[8]
1990-2000[9] 2010-2013[1]

2010[edit]

Whereas according to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau:

2000[edit]

As of the census of 2000,[10] there were 61,296 people, 25,358 households, and 16,964 families residing in the county. The population density was 145 people per square mile (56/km²). There were 27,703 housing units at an average density of 65 per square mile (25/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 95.34% White, 2.49% Black or African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.50% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.38% from other races, and 0.98% from two or more races. 1.24% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 18.1% were of German, 18.1% American, 13.7% English, 12.9% Irish and 6.6% Italian ancestry.

There were 25,358 households out of which 29.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.40% were married couples living together, 10.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.10% were non-families. 28.90% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 2.89.

In the county the population was spread out with 22.90% under the age of 18, 8.60% from 18 to 24, 27.90% from 25 to 44, 24.10% from 45 to 64, and 16.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 93.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $31,991, and the median income for a family was $40,692. Males had a median income of $32,386 versus $21,570 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,779. About 11.40% of families and 14.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.60% of those under age 18 and 10.60% of those age 65 or over.

Government and infrastructure[edit]

United States Penitentiary, Marion is located in Southern Precinct in Williamson County.[11][12]

Climate and weather[edit]

Marion, Illinois
Climate chart (explanation)
J F M A M J J A S O N D
 
 
3.3
 
38
19
 
 
3.2
 
44
23
 
 
4.5
 
55
33
 
 
4.5
 
66
42
 
 
4.9
 
75
52
 
 
4.3
 
83
61
 
 
3.9
 
87
65
 
 
3.7
 
86
63
 
 
3.1
 
79
55
 
 
3.1
 
68
43
 
 
4.8
 
55
34
 
 
3.7
 
43
24
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[13]

Williamson County lies on the border between humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfa) and humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa), with neither large mountains nor large bodies of water to moderate its temperature. It is subject to both cold Arctic air and hot, humid tropical air from the Gulf of Mexico and, along with the rest of the midwestern United States, is home to some of the largest temperature extremes in the world. The region has four distinct seasons. Spring is the wettest season and produces erratic severe weather ranging from tornadoes to winter storms. Summers are hot and humid with only occasional and brief respite, and the humidity often makes the heat index rise to temperatures feeling well above 100 °F (38 °C). Fall is mild with lower humidity and can produce intermittent bouts of heavy rainfall with the first snow flurries usually forming in late November. Winters are cold with periodic snow and temperatures often below freezing, however thaws are usually frequent. Winter storm systems, such as Alberta clippers and Panhandle hooks, can bring days of heavy freezing rain, ice pellets, and snowfall.

The normal high temperature in July is 90 °F (32 °C), and the normal low temperature in January is 19 °F (−6 °C), although this varies from year to year. Both 100 °F (37.8 °C) and 0 °F (−17.8 °C) temperatures can be seen on an average 2 or 3 days per year. In recent years, average temperatures have ranged from a low of 19 °F (−7 °C) in January to a high of 88 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −25 °F (−32 °C) was recorded in January 1977 and a record high of 113 °F (45 °C) was recorded in August 1977. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 3.06 inches (78 mm) in October to 4.93 inches (125 mm) in May.[13]

Williamson County experiences thunderstorms about 50 days a year on average. Thunderstorms contribute over half of the annual precipitation. Especially in the spring, these storms can often be severe, with high winds, large hail and tornadoes.

Some late autumns feature the warm weather known as Indian summer; some years see roses in bloom as late as early December.

Communities[edit]

Cities[edit]

Villages[edit]

Unincorporated communities[edit]

Ghost towns[edit]

Precincts[edit]

The following precincts are not voting precincts, but represent the 12 Congressional townships in Williamson County. Most have multiple voting precincts.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 9, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ Adams, James N. (compiler) (1989), Keller, William E., ed., Illinois Place Names, Springfield: Illinois State Historical Society, p. 609, ISBN 0-912226-24-2 
  4. ^ Angle, Paul M. (1992), Bloody Williamson - A Chapter in American Lawlessness, University of Illinois Press, ISBN 0-252-06233-7 
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  6. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 9, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 9, 2014. 
  8. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 9, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 9, 2014. 
  10. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14. 
  11. ^ "USP Marion Contact Information." Federal Bureau of Prisons. Retrieved on June 5, 2010.
  12. ^ "Marion city, Illinois." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on June 5, 2010.
  13. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Marion, Illinois". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Angle, Paul M. (1992). Bloody Williamson - A Chapter in American Lawlessness. University of Illinois Press. ISBN 0-252-06233-7.
  • Ayabe, Masatomo, “Ku Kluxers in a Coal Mining Community: A Study of the Ku Klux Klan Movement in Williamson County, Illinois, 1923–1926,” Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, 102 (Spring 2009), 73–100.
  • Erwin, Milo. 1876, Rep. 1976. History of Williamson County, Illinois. Marion, Ill.: Williamson County Historical Society.
  • Erwin, Milo, and Jon Musgrave. 2006. The Bloody Vendetta of Southern Illinois. Marion, Ill.: IllinoisHistory.com. 240 pages.
  • Johnson, Ralph, and Jon Musgrave. 2010. Secrets of the Herrin Gangs. Marion, Ill.: IllinoisHistory.com. 96 pages.

Coordinates: 37°44′N 88°56′W / 37.73°N 88.93°W / 37.73; -88.93