Carterville, Illinois

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This article is about the city. For the precinct, see Carterville Precinct, Williamson County, Illinois.
Country United States
State Illinois
County Williamson
Coordinates 37°45′40.03″N 89°4′46.52″W / 37.7611194°N 89.0795889°W / 37.7611194; -89.0795889
Area 5.28 sq mi (14 km2)
 - land 5.19 sq mi (13 km2)
 - water 0.09 sq mi (0 km2)
Density 1,061.8 / sq mi (410 / km2)
Mayor Brad Robinson
Timezone CST (UTC-6)
 - summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
Postal code 62918
Area code 618
Location of Carterville within Illinois
Location of Carterville within Illinois
Wikimedia Commons: Carterville, Illinois

Carterville is a city in Williamson County, Illinois, United States, geographically situated between Carbondale and Marion. The city is located next to Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge. The Refuge's 44,000 acres (180 km2) of land and water contain a wide diversity of flora and fauna.[1] As of the 2010 census, the city population was 5,496. The city is part of the Carbondale-Marion combined statistical area and city has grown considerably as a residential community of Carbondale and Marion.


Carterville was founded by George M. McNeill and Laban Carter. McNeill married Olive Herrin of Herrin Prairie and, in 1866, they settled on the farm that is now known as Carterville. Co-founder Carter, came to Williamson County in 1864, and purchased 100 acres (0.40 km2) of land and helped organize and secure a post office for Carterville in 1871. The town was named in Carter's honor.[2] McNeill was one of the youngest members of the Union army during the American Civil War. He enlisted at 16 and was with General Sherman during his March to the Sea.[2]


According to the 2010 census, the city has a total area of 5.28 square miles (13.7 km2), of which 5.19 square miles (13.4 km2) (or 98.30%) is land and 0.09 square miles (0.23 km2) (or 1.70%) is water.[3]


Carterville is home to John A. Logan College, named for the local American Civil War hero and politician John A. Logan. A college of approximately 8,000 students, John A. Logan College has been featured in Rolling Stone Magazine as the nation's fifth best community college and in 2004 was recognized as one of the fastest growing community colleges in the nation.[4]

The Carterville Unit 5 Schools' athletic programs have been successful in the past, winning the IHSA State Conference Championship in Class 3A football in 1996 and in Class 2A softball in 2008.[5]


Beginning in 1995, Carterville High School reached the IHSA playoffs 20 of the past 21 seasons. This span includes 9 quarterfinals appearances (1996,2000,2004,2005,2007,2008,2010,2012, 2014) and one state title in 1996.[6] [7]

In August 2008, Carterville unveiled a new outdoor athletic complex. The addition includes a football field with an artificial playing surface that sports a large "C" at midfield and also includes an all-weather track, enabling the school to host track meets for the first time in many years.[8]

It has been a long-time tradition during Carterville football games that "The Cannon" is shot off after every Lions touchdown. "The Cannon" is an actual American Civil War cannon that is owned privately by a resident family of the town. The noise of the cannon was so loud that visiting fans were often taken aback at the boom, which could be heard throughout much of the town. "The Cannon" has become synonymous with the Carterville football tradition. Despite concerns of "The Cannon" being retired along with the old field, it has been taken out to the new complex and can still be heard following every Lions' score.[9]

Carterville has been a long-time member of the Black Diamond Conference. Other Black Diamond schools include Johnston City, Christopher, Zeigler-Royalton, Sesser-Valier, Elverado, Hamilton County, Fairfield, Carmi-White County, Trico, Vienna, as well as a few other schools for particular sports. In 2010, Carterville moved to the River to River Conference's Mississippi Division featuring larger schools such as DuQuoin, Anna-Jonesboro, Pinckneyville, Nashville, and Sparta. This switch has been made due to Carterville's rapid increase in enrollment, along with their football domination within the BDC. Since joining the R2R, Carterville has won the conference championship 4 times,with two of the times being co-champions. [10]


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 692
1890 969 40.0%
1900 1,749 80.5%
1910 2,971 69.9%
1920 3,404 14.6%
1930 2,866 −15.8%
1940 2,893 0.9%
1950 2,716 −6.1%
1960 2,643 −2.7%
1970 3,061 15.8%
1980 3,445 12.5%
1990 3,630 5.4%
2000 4,616 27.2%
2010 5,496 19.1%
Est. 2014 5,770 [11] 5.0%
U.S. Census[12]

As of the census[13] of 2000, there were 4,616 people, 1,933 households, and 1,293 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,061.8 people per square mile (409.7/km²). There were 2,093 housing units at an average density of 481.5 per square mile (185.8/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.21% White, 1.13% African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.93% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.58% from other races, and 0.97% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.13% of the population.

There were 1,933 households out of which 32.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.4% were married couples living together, 10.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.1% were non-families. 28.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.39 and the average family size was 2.95.

In the city the population was spread out with 25.2% under the age of 18, 10.0% from 18 to 24, 28.1% from 25 to 44, 23.1% from 45 to 64, and 13.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 93.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $36,969, and the median income for a family was $44,722. Males had a median income of $34,231 versus $24,924 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,884. About 9.9% of families and 14.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.4% of those under age 18 and 7.1% of those age 65 or over.


In a 2013 election, Brad Robinson was elected Mayor of Carterville. Robinson succeeded Mayor Bill Mausey, who retired after 26 years in the position.[14]


Further reading[edit]

  • Angle, Paul M. (1992). Bloody Williamson - A Chapter in American Lawlessness. University of Illinois Press. ISBN 0-252-06233-7.
  • 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.: 240 pages.
  • Spence, Jennifer and Sheri Hunter. 2011. Carterville, Cambria & Crainville: A Look Back At Our Towns. ISBN 0-615-49379-3.

External links[edit]