Cook County, Illinois
|Cook County, Illinois|
Map of Illinois showing Cook County
Illinois's location in the United States
|Metro area||Chicago Metropolitan|
|Incorporated||January 15, 1831|
|Named for||Daniel Cook|
|• Body||Board of Commissioners|
|• Board President||Toni R. Preckwinkle (D)|
|• County Board||17 commissioners|
|• County||1,635 sq mi (4,230 km2)|
|• Land||945 sq mi (2,450 km2)|
|• Water||690 sq mi (1,800 km2)|
|• Metro||10,874 sq mi (28,160 km2)|
|Area rank||6th largest county in Illinois|
|Highest elevation||950 ft (290 m)|
|Lowest elevation||580 ft (180 m)|
|• Estimate (2013)||5,240,700|
|• Rank||1st largest county in Illinois
2nd largest county in U.S.
|• Density||5,530/sq mi (2,140/km2)|
|Time zone||Central (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||Central (UTC-5)|
|ZIP Code Prefixes||600xx thru 608xx|
|Area codes||224/847, 312/872, 773/872, 708|
|Congressional districts||1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th,
8th, 9th 10th and 11th
|GNIS feature ID||1784766|
|Public transit||Chicago Transit Authority (CTA)
Metra – Pace – South Shore Line
Cook County is a county in the U.S. state of Illinois. It is the second-most populous county in the United States after Los Angeles County, California. As of 2014, the population was 5,246,456. Its county seat is Chicago, the largest city in Illinois and third-most populous city in the United States. More than 40% of all residents of Illinois live in Cook County.
Cook County's population is larger than that of 29 individual U.S. states and the combined populations of the seven smallest states. There are 135 incorporated municipalities partially or wholly within Cook County, the largest of which is Chicago, which is home to approximately 54% of the population of the county. That part of the county which lies outside of the Chicago city limits is divided into 30 townships, which often divide or share governmental services with local municipalities. Geographically, the county is the fifth largest in Illinois by land area and shares the state's Lake Michigan shoreline with Lake County. Including its lake area, the county has a total area of 1,635 square miles (4,234.6 km2), the largest county in Illinois, of which 945 square miles (2,447.5 km2) is land and 690 square miles (1,787.1 km2) (42.16%) is water. Cook County's land is mainly urban and very densely populated.
- 1 History
- 2 Government and politics
- 3 Geography
- 4 Demographics
- 5 Communities
- 6 See also
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Cook County was created on January 15, 1831, out of Putnam County by an act of the Illinois General Assembly. It was the 54th county established in Illinois and was named after Daniel Cook, one of the earliest and youngest statesmen in Illinois history, who served as the second U.S. Representative from Illinois and the state's first Attorney General. In 1839, DuPage County was carved out of Cook County.
Cook County 1836–39 after the creation of Lake County
Cook County was reduced to its current size in 1839 by the creation of DuPage County.
Government and politics
The government of Cook County is primarily composed of the Board of Commissioners, other elected officials such as the Sheriff, State's Attorney, Treasurer, Board of Review, Clerk, Assessor, Recorder, Circuit Court judges, and Circuit Court Clerk, as well as numerous other officers and entities. Cook County is the only home rule county in Illinois. The Cook County Code is the codification of Cook County's local ordinances. Cook County's current County Board president is Toni Preckwinkle.
The Circuit Court of Cook County, which is a State agency funded, in part, by Cook County, accepts more than 1.2 million cases each year for filing. The Cook County Department of Corrections, also known as the Cook County Jail, is the largest single-site jail in the nation. The Cook County Juvenile Detention Center, under the authority of the Chief Judge of the State court, is the first juvenile center in the nation and one of the largest in the nation. The Cook County Law Library is the second largest county law library in the nation. In the 1980s, Cook County was ground zero to an extensive FBI investigation called Operation Greylord. Ninety-two officials were indicted, including 17 judges, 48 lawyers, 8 policemen, 10 deputy sheriffs, 8 court officials, and a state legislator.
The Bureau of Health Services administers the county's public health services and is the third largest public health system in the nation. Three hospitals are part of this system: John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County, Provident Hospital, and Oak Forest Hospital of Cook County, along with over 30 clinics.
The Cook County Department of Transportation is responsible for the design and maintenance of roadways in the county. These thoroughfares are mostly composed of major and minor arterials, with a few local roads. Although the Department of Transportation was instrumental in designing many of the expressways in the county, today they are under the jurisdiction of the state.
The Cook County Forest Preserves, organized in 1915, is a separate, independent taxing body, but the Cook County Board of Commissioners also acts as its Board of Commissioners. The district is a belt of 69,000 acres (280 km2) of forest reservations surrounding the city of Chicago. The Brookfield Zoo (managed by the Chicago Zoological Society) and the Chicago Botanic Garden (managed by the Chicago Horticultural Society) are located in the forest preserves.
Cook County is the fifth largest employer in Chicago.
The county has more Democratic Party members than any other Illinois county and is one of the most Democratic counties in the United States. It has voted only once for a Republican candidate in a Presidential election in the last 50 years, when county voters preferred Richard Nixon to George McGovern in 1972. The 1970 Illinois Constitution allows the controlling party to redraw voting districts; The Republican Party controlled the process through the 80's and 90's gerrymandering the state to their advantage. Since 2000 the Democratic Party won control gerrymandering to gain additional seats in the U.S. House of Representatives from Republicans in the 2012 election more effectively representing the demographics of the state. Nonetheless, Republicans are customarily represented by officeholders in certain districts.
The Cook County Democratic Party represents Democratic voters in 50 wards in the city of Chicago and 30 suburban townships of Cook County. The organization has dominated County, city, and state politics since the 1930s. The last Republican mayor of Chicago was William Hale "Big Bill" Thompson, who left office in 1931 with a record of corruption. The high-water mark for Republican candidacies for mayor since then was that of Republican candidate Bernard Epton, who in 1983 came within 3.3 percentage points of defeating Democrat Harold Washington.
In March 2008, the County Board increased the sales tax by one percent to 1.75 percent. This followed a quarter-cent increase in mass transit taxes. In Chicago, the rate increased to 10.25 percent, the steepest nominal rate of any major metropolitan area in America. In Evanston, sales tax reached 10 percent and Oak Lawn residents pay 9.5 percent. On July 22, 2008, the Cook County board voted against Cook County Commissioner's proposal to repeal the tax increase.
|2012||74.00% 1,488,537||24.63% 495,542|
|2008||76.48% 1,582,973||23.05% 477,038|
|2004||70.25% 1,439,724||29.15% 597,405|
|2000||68.63% 1,280,547||28.65% 534,542|
|1996||66.79% 1,153,289||26.73% 461,557|
|1992||58.21% 1,249,533||28.20% 605,300|
|1988||55.77% 1,129,973||43.36% 878,582|
|1984||51.02% 1,112,641||48.40% 1,055,558|
|1980||51.99% 1,124,584||39.60% 856,574|
|1976||53.44% 1,180,814||44.69% 987,498|
|1972||46.01% 1,063,268||53.41% 1,234,307|
|1968||50.56% 1,181,316||41.11% 960,493|
|1964||63.18% 1,537,181||36.82% 895,718|
|1960||56.37% 1,378,343||43.33% 1,059,607|
To establish more localized government control and policies which reflect the often different values and needs of large suburban sections of the sprawling county, several secession movements have been made over the years which called for certain townships or municipalities to form their own independent counties.
In the late 1970s, a movement started which proposed a separation of six northwest suburban townships, Cook County's panhandle (Barrington, Hanover, Palatine, Wheeling, Schaumburg, and Elk Grove) from Cook to form Lincoln County, in honor of the former U.S. president and Illinois resident. It is likely that Arlington Heights would have been the county seat. This northwest suburban region of Cook is moderately conservative and has a population over 500,000. Local legislators, led by State Senator Dave Regnar, went so far as to propose it as official legislation in the Illinois House. The legislation died, however, before coming to a vote.
In 2004, Blue Island Mayor Donald E. Peloquin organized a coalition of fifty-five south and southwest suburban municipalities to form a new county, also proposing the name Lincoln County. The county would include everything south of Burbank, stretching as far west as Orland Park, as far east as Calumet City, and as far south as Matteson, covering an expansive area with a population of over one million residents. Peloquin argued that the south suburbs are often shunned by the city (although Chicago is not bound or required to do anything for other municipalities) and he blamed the Chicago-centric policies of Cook County for failing to jumpstart the somewhat-depressed south suburban local economy. Pending sufficient interest from local communities, Peloquin planned a petition drive to place a question regarding the secession on the general election ballot, but the idea was not met with success.
Talk of secession from Cook County amongst some outlying communities again heated up in mid-2008 in response to a highly controversial 1% sales tax hike which has pushed the tax rates across the county communities up amongst the highest in the nation. Some border towns in particular had been outraged, as people can take their business across the county border (paying, for instance, 7% in Lake County instead of Palatine's 9.5%). The secession issue eventually died down from the nominal tax increase.
In 2011, two downstate Republican state representatives, Bill Mitchell of the 87th district and Adam Brown of the 101st district, proposed statehood for Cook County. Mitchell said that Chicago is "dictating its views" to the rest of the state and Brown added that Chicago "overshadows" the rest of Illinois.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,635 square miles (4,230 km2), of which 945 square miles (2,450 km2) is land and 690 square miles (1,800 km2) (42.2%) is water. It is the sixth largest county in Illinois by land area, and the largest in total area. Most of the water is in Lake Michigan. The highest point in Cook County is its northwest corner, at nearly 1,000 feet above sea level.
Climate and weather
|Climate chart (explanation)|
In July, temperatures in Chicago, Cook County average daytime highs of 84 °F (29 °C), and nighttime lows of 68 °F (20 °C); and January daytime highs of 31 °F (−1 °C), and nighttime lows of 18 °F (−8 °C). Winter temperatures will sometimes veer above 40 °F (4 °C), and, although not common, have also risen over 50 °F (10 °C) on some winter days. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 4.30 inches (109 mm) in June to 1.77 inches (45 mm) in February.
- U.S. Highway 6
- U.S. Highway 12
- U.S. Highway 14
- U.S. Highway 20
- U.S. Highway 30
- U.S. Highway 34
- U.S. Highway 41
- U.S. Highway 45
- Historic U.S. 66
- Illinois Route 1
- Illinois Route 7
- Illinois Route 19
- Illinois Route 21
- Illinois Route 25
- Illinois Route 38
- Illinois Route 43
- Illinois Route 50
- Illinois Route 53
- Illinois Route 56
- Illinois Route 58
- Illinois Route 59
- Illinois Route 62
- Illinois Route 64
- Illinois Route 68
- Illinois Route 72
- Illinois Route 83
- Illinois Route 110
- Illinois Route 171
- Illinois Route 390
- Illinois Route 394
Cook County is among the few counties in the United States to border two counties with the same name (Lake County, Illinois and Lake County, Indiana). Illinois has two such counties (Randolph County borders both Perry County, Illinois and Perry County, Missouri).
National protected area
|U.S. Decennial Census
As of the 2010 Census, the population of the county was 5,194,675, White Americans made up 55.4% of Cook County's population; non-Hispanic whites represented 43.9% of the population. African Americans made up 24.8% of the population. Native Americans made up 0.4% of Cook County's population. Asian Americans made up 6.2% of the population (1.8% Indian, 1.2% Filipino, 1.2% Chinese, 0.7% Korean, 0.3% Vietnamese, 0.2% Japanese, 0.8% Other). Pacific Islander Americans made up just 0.0% of the population. People from other races made up 10.6% of the population; people from two or more races made up 2.5% of the county's population. Hispanics and Latinos (of any race) made up 24.0% of Cook County's population.
As of the 2000 Census, there were 5,376,741 people, 1,974,181 households, and 1,269,398 families residing in the county. The population density was 5,686 people per square mile (2,195/km²). There were 2,096,121 housing units at an average density of 2,216 per square mile (856/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 56.27% white, 26.14% Black or African American, 0.29% Native American, 4.84% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islanders, 9.88% from other races, and 2.53% from two or more races. 19.93% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 9.1% were of Polish, 8.1% German, 7.9% Irish and 5.7% Italian ancestry according to Census 2000. 17.63% reported speaking Spanish at home; 3.13% speak Polish.
Whites (Hispanic and non-Hispanic) number roughly 2,793,500. There are about 2,372,500 non-Hispanic whites residing in Cook County. The white population is ethnically diverse. Sizeable white populations are those of German (11.4%), Irish (10.3%), Polish (9.7%), Italian (6.1%), and British (4.1%) descent. There are also significant groups of Swedish (1.5%), Russian (1.5%), French (1.3%), Greek (1.2%), Czech (1.0%), Dutch (1.0%), Lithuanian (0.9%), and Norwegian (0.8%) descent.
Black Americans are the second largest racial group. Black Americans form over one-quarter (25.4%) of Cook County's population. Blacks of non-Hispanic origin form 25.2% of the population; black Hispanics make up the remaining 0.2% of the populace. There are roughly 1,341,000 African Americans of both Hispanic and non-Hispanic origin living in Cook County; 1,328,000 are non-Hispanic blacks. Roughly 52,500 people were of Sub-Saharan African ancestry, making up 1.0% of the total population.
The Native American population is sizeable but small proportionally. Over 10,200 residents of Cook County are of Native American ancestry, equivalent to just 0.2% of the total population. There are 974 Cherokee, 612 Chippewa, 430 Navajo, and 96 Sioux living in Cook County. Native Americans of Hispanic origin represent much of the Native American population group. Some 5,900 Native Americans are of non-Hispanic origin, so some 4,300 are of Hispanic origin. Over 40% of the Native American racial group is of Hispanic descent.
Asian Americans are a sizeable racial group in the county, numbering over 300,800. The Asian population is ethnically diverse, and includes roughly 87,900 Indians, 61,700 Filipinos, 60,700 Chinese, 35,000 Koreans, 13,700 Vietnamese, and 11,100 Japanese. Roughly 30,800 are of other Asian ethnic groups, such as Thai, Cambodian, and Hmong. Indian Americans make up 1.7% of the population, while Chinese and Filipino Americans make up 1.2% of the population each.
Pacific Islander Americans form the smallest racial group in Cook County. Just over 3,000 are of Pacific Islander heritage. This group includes roughly 780 Native Hawaiians, 670 Guamanians, 120 Samoans, and 1,400 people of other Pacific Islander groups.
Hispanic and Latino Americans make up over one-fifth (22.8%) of Cook County's population. Roughly 1,204,000 Hispanics live in the county. Mexicans are, by far, the most common Hispanic group. Cook County's 925,000 Mexican Americans make up 17.5% of its population. Roughly 127,000 Puerto Ricans make up 2.4% of the population. About 12,200 Cubans form 0.2% of the total population. There are some 140,000 Hispanics and Latinos of other nationalities living in Cook County (i.e. Colombian, Bolivian, etc., and they collectively make up 2.6% of the county's population.
According to the 2000 Census there were 1,974,181 households out of which 30.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.0% were married couples living together, 15.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.7% were non-families. 29.4% of all households were someone living alone including 9.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.38.
In the county the population age distribution was: 26.0% under the age of 18, 9.9% from 18 to 24, 31.7% from 25 to 44, 20.7% from 45 to 64, and 11.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 93.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.5 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $45,922, and the median income for a family was $53,784. Males had a median income of $40,690 versus $31,298 for females. The per capita income for the county was $23,227. About 10.6% of families and 13.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.9% of those under age 18 and 10.3% of those age 65 or over.
According to Census Bureau estimates, the county's population was down to 5,303,683 in 2005, decreased further by 2010 (5,194,675) and had grown slightly by 2014 (5,246,456).
- Blue Island
- Calumet City
- Chicago Heights
- Country Club Hills
- Des Plaines
- Elgin (partly in Kane County)
- Elmhurst (partly in DuPage County)
- Hickory Hills
- Oak Forest
- Palos Heights
- Palos Hills
- Park Ridge
- Prospect Heights
- Rolling Meadows
- Arlington Heights
- Barrington (partly in Lake County)
- Barrington Hills (partly in Kane County, Lake County, and McHenry County)
- Bartlett (partly in DuPage County and Kane County)
- Bedford Park
- Bensenville (partly in DuPage County)
- Buffalo Grove (partly in Lake County)
- Burr Ridge (partly in DuPage County)
- Calumet Park
- Chicago Ridge
- Deer Park (partly in Lake County)
- Deerfield (partly in Lake County)
- East Dundee (partly in Kane County)
- East Hazel Crest
- Elk Grove Village (partly in DuPage County)
- Elmwood Park
- Evergreen Park
- Ford Heights
- Forest Park
- Forest View
- Frankfort (partly in Will County)
- Franklin Park
- Hanover Park (partly in DuPage County)
- Harwood Heights
- Hazel Crest
- Hinsdale (partly in DuPage County)
- Hoffman Estates (partly in Kane County)
- Indian Head Park
- La Grange
- La Grange Park
- Lemont (partly in DuPage County and Will County)
- Matteson (partly in Will County)
- Melrose Park
- Merrionette Park
- Morton Grove
- Mount Prospect
- North Riverside
- Oak Brook (partly in DuPage County)
- Oak Lawn
- Oak Park
- Olympia Fields
- Orland Hills
- Orland Park (partly in Will County)
- Palos Park
- Park Forest (partly in Will County)
- Richton Park
- River Forest
- River Grove
- Roselle (partly in DuPage County)
- Sauk Village (partly in Will County)
- Schaumburg (partly in DuPage County)
- Schiller Park
- South Barrington
- South Chicago Heights
- South Holland
- Steger (partly in Will County)
- Stone Park
- Tinley Park (partly in Will County)
- University Park (partly in Will County)
- Western Springs
- Wheeling (partly in Lake County)
- Willow Springs (partly in DuPage County)
- Woodridge (partly in DuPage County and Will County)
The county is divided into 30 townships, in addition to the City of Chicago.
The 30 townships of Cook County, with their populations as of the 2010 Census, are:
- Thornton Township – 169,326
- Wheeling Township – 153,630
- Worth Township – 152,633
- Proviso Township – 151,704
- Maine Township – 135,772
- Schaumburg Township – 131,288
- Palatine Township – 112,994
- Lyons Township – 111,688
- Bremen Township – 110,118
- Niles Township – 105,882
- Hanover Township – 99,538
- Orland Township – 97,558
- Elk Grove Township – 92,905
- Leyden Township – 92,890
- Bloom Township – 90,922
- Northfield Township – 85,102
- Cicero Township – 83,891
- Rich Township – 76,727
- Berwyn Township – 56,657
- New Trier Township – 55,424
- Palos Township – 54,615
- Oak Park Township – 51,878
- Stickney Township – 40,772
- Norwood Park Township – 26,385
- Lemont Township – 21,113
- Calumet Township – 20,777
- Barrington Township – 15,636
- Riverside Township – 15,594
- River Forest Township – 11,172
Chicago's eight former townships and annexed parts of others no longer have any governmental structure or responsibility since their annexations, but their names and boundaries are still used on property plats and by Cook County for tax assessment purposes.
- Chicago metropolitan area
- Cook County Forest Preserve District
- Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Cook County, Illinois
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- "All the extra cost will be no small change". Chicago Tribune. 2008. Retrieved March 2, 2008.
- Howley, Kerry (November 6, 2012). "Tammy Duckworth Wins in Illinois, as Does Gerrymandering and Deadbeat-Dad Shaming". Slate. Retrieved November 11, 2012.
- Bazelon, Emily (November 9, 2012). "It's Appalling that Gerrymandering Is Legal". Slate. Retrieved November 11, 2012.
- Greenbaum, Mark (June 8, 2011). "Democrats' revenge in 2012: a radical Illinois gerrymander". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved November 11, 2012.
- See, e.g., Cook County Board of Commissioners.
- "Bernard E. Epton Is Dead at 66; Ran for Mayor of Chicago in '83". The New York Times. December 14, 1987. Retrieved February 11, 2014.
- "Chicago's Largest Employers". ChicagoBusiness.
- "Cook County Board 'rejects' sales tax increase repeal". Chicago Tribune. July 22, 2008. Retrieved July 23, 2008.
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- "Blue Island mayor wants to create "Lincoln County"". WLS-TV News (abc7chicago.com). June 25, 2004. Archived from the original on June 29, 2011.
- PinPoint Sales Tax Lookup. Zip2tax.com. Retrieved on 2013-07-21.
- "2 GOP legislators propose separating Cook County from Illinois". SJ-R.com. November 22, 2011. Cf. Winston County, Alabama.
- "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2015-07-11.
- ISGS - Topography of Cook County
- "Monthly Averages for Chicago, Illinois". The Weather Channel. Retrieved January 27, 2011.
- "County Totals Dataset: Population, Population Change and Estimated Components of Population Change: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016.
- "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 4, 2014.
- "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 4, 2014.
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- "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 4, 2014.
- "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 20, 2016.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- http://www.mla.org/map_data_results&state_id=17&county_id=31&mode=geographic&zip=&place_id=&cty_id=&ll=all&a=&ea=&order=r mla.org
- American FactFinder Archived October 17, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
- American FactFinder Archived October 17, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
- Cook County, Illinois, United States Census Bureau Archived November 26, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
- "accessed 2011 May 17". Factfinder2.census.gov. 2010-10-05. Retrieved 2014-04-04.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cook County, Illinois.|
- Cook County Government Website
- Cook County Assessor
- Cook County Board of Review
- Circuit Court of Cook County
- Clerk of the Circuit Court of Cook County
- Clerk of Cook County
- Vote! from the Cook County Election Department
- Cook County Recorder of Deeds
- Cook County Sheriff
- Cook County Jail
- Cook County State's Attorney
- Cook County Treasurer
- Forest Preserve District of Cook County
- Cook County History Pages
||McHenry County||Lake County|
|DuPage County and Kane County||Berrien County, Michigan|
|Will County||Lake County, Indiana|