Lake Villa, Illinois

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Lake Villa, Illinois
Motto: "Gateway to the Lake Region"[1]
Country United States
State Illinois
County Lake
Coordinates 42°25′3″N 88°4′56″W / 42.41750°N 88.08222°W / 42.41750; -88.08222Coordinates: 42°25′3″N 88°4′56″W / 42.41750°N 88.08222°W / 42.41750; -88.08222
Area 6.99 sq mi (18 km2)
 - land 6.19 sq mi (16 km2)
 - water 0.80 sq mi (2 km2)
Population 8,741 (2010)
Density 1,251 / sq mi (483 / km2)
Timezone CST (UTC-6)
 - summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
Postal code 60046
Area code 847 and 224
Location of Lake Villa within Illinois
Location of Lake Villa within Illinois
Wikimedia Commons: Lake Villa, Illinois

Lake Villa is a village in Lake County, Illinois United States. The population was 8,741 at the 2010 census,[2] up from 5,864 in 2000. Lake Villa lies within Lake Villa Township.


Lake Villa's history began well over a century ago, before its incorporation in 1901. Originally settled in the early 19th century, Lake Villa was once a resort town where the affluent and many other tourists came to relax. Several of the early mansions from that time still stand. Lake Villa was incorporated on October 26, 1901.[3]

E.J. Lehmann, the "Merchant Prince of State Street", had a profound impact on the history of Lake Villa. By bringing in the railroad and a resort hotel, the area was the "Lake Geneva" of its time.[citation needed] A depot was completed, and the first passenger train stopped at Lake Villa on July 26, 1886. Passenger train service was reestablished on the Wisconsin Central in 1995. In 1996, the Lake Villa train station was reconstructed according to the original architectural plans. Mondays through Fridays, the single track is shared by 10 passenger trains a day and countless freights. Sidings added along the way are currently being connected to make a second track and allow for seven-day service.

Ice cutting in the winter was one of Lake Villa's past industries. The Knickerbocker Ice Company built a plant (1888) on the south shore of Deep Lake with a railroad spur to the site. Blocks of ice were cut from the frozen area lakes and shipped by train to Chicago. Horses pulled huge double cut saws along the lakes, and steam engines lifted the 22-inch (560 mm) blocks on 14-foot-high (4.3 m) ropes and pulleys to the warehouse. Many local farmers worked the ice fields in the winter.

The town center at that time was along Route 83 at Cedar Avenue. The northeast corner had a meat market, a restaurant and Dixon's Sugar House. Just north was Lehmann's Lake Villa Hotel on the east shore of Cedar Lake, where Cedar Village now stands. The Methodist Episcopal Church of Lake Villa held the southwest corner, having been moved by wagon in 1892. The church is now a private residence. Across the street to the east were a post office, a livery stable and bus barn owned by E.J. Lehmann and John Stratton, offering horse-drawn bus and carriage rides to local resorts from the train station and sight-seeing tours. To the east was the fabulous Lehmann home, a stucco castle built in 1888 overlooking Deep Lake. Just north of the Lehmann property were two more hotels, the Jarvis House and the Darby House. The local newspaper was the Lake Villa Advocate.

Population from the Bureau of the Census Library shows an interesting growth pattern for the village. In 1910 the population was 343. By 1920 it had grown to 407, which increased to 487 during the next 10 years. The Great Depression years saw a dip in the number of people living in Lake Villa, and by 1940, the figure had fallen to 439. A postwar jump took place during the 1940s, and by 1950 the population had nearly doubled to 824. The increase continued and 1960 saw a population of 903.

Certificates in the village files report growth over shorter intervals than the Census Bureau's regular decade counts. In 1966, the village had a population of 1,024, which grew to 1,090 in the next five years. By 1981 the population stood at 1,462; 1987's count was 2,395; by 1989 the figure had climbed to 2,752; and in 1990, the population reached 2,857. A special census conducted by the Census Bureau in 1997 showed a population increase to 3,957, and in 2000 the population was 5,864. A 2004 special census recorded a population of 7,994, which rose to 8,741 at the 2010 census.[4]


Lake Villa is located at 42°25′3″N 88°4′56″W / 42.41750°N 88.08222°W / 42.41750; -88.08222 (42.417546, -88.082360).[5]

According to the 2010 census, Lake Villa has a total area of 6.994 square miles (18.11 km2), of which 6.19 square miles (16.03 km2) (or 88.5%) is land and 0.804 square miles (2.08 km2) (or 11.5%) is water.[6]

The village lies in a gently rolling moraine landscape, dominated by lakes of glacial origin. Among these are Cedar Lake, north of the village center, and Deep Lake, to the east. There are several smaller lakes and ponds, along with a complement of wetlands. The lakes and ponds have been important in Lake Villa's historic tourist industry, and over the years led to a small ice industry.

Drainage is ultimately to the Des Plaines and Fox rivers, both of which flow to the Illinois River and ultimately the Mississippi.

The Wisconsin Central Railway runs through the village center. This is a heavily used freight line which also carries Metra commuter rail traffic from Antioch, Illinois to the Chicago Loop.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 342
1920 407 19.0%
1930 487 19.7%
1940 438 −10.1%
1950 824 88.1%
1960 903 9.6%
1970 1,090 20.7%
1980 1,462 34.1%
1990 2,857 95.4%
2000 5,864 105.3%
2010 8,741 49.1%
Est. 2014 8,825 [7] 1.0%
U.S. Decennial Census[8]

As of the census[9] of 2000, there were 5,864 people, 2,052 households, and 1,594 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,024.4 people per square mile (395.8/km²). There were 2,135 housing units at an average density of 373.0 per square mile (144.1/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 92.94% White, 2.47% African American, 0.12% Native American, 1.64% Asian, 0.09% Pacific Islander, 0.89% from other races, and 1.86% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.09% of the population.

There were 2,052 households out of which 45.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 67.9% were married couples living together, 7.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.3% were non-families. 17.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.20.

In the village the population was spread out with 32.1% under the age of 18, 5.8% from 18 to 24, 37.8% from 25 to 44, 18.9% from 45 to 64, and 5.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 99.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.5 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $65,078, and the median income for a family was $75,078. Males had a median income of $51,806 versus $36,961 for females. The per capita income for the village was $26,238. About 1.9% of families and 3.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.7% of those under age 18 and 7.3% of those age 65 or over.

Lake Villa has a significant Polish community, and the community has become considerably more diverse in recent years.[citation needed]


Elected officials[edit]

  • Frank M. Loffredo
  • Scott Bartlett
  • Kathy Battistone
  • Karen Harms
  • Kevin Kruckeberg
  • James McDonald
  • Jeff Nielsen


High school[edit]

Lake Villa High School Students will attend one of the following:

Middle school(s)[edit]

  • Peter J. Palombi Middle School (Grades 7-8)

Elementary school(s)[edit]

  • Olive C. Martin Elementary (Grades PK-6)
  • William L. Thompson Elementary Grades PK-6)
  • B. J. Hooper Elementary (Grades PK-6)




Lake Villa has a station on Metra's North Central Service, which provides daily rail service between Antioch and Chicago's Union Station.

Major streets[edit]

  • Illinois 83.svg Milwaukee Avenue
  • Illinois 132.svg Grand Avenue
  • Grasslake Road
  • Petite Lake Road
  • Deep Lake Road
  • Fairfield Road
  • Cedar Lake Road
  • Monaville Road


  1. ^ "Village of Lake Villa, Illinois". Village of Lake Villa, Illinois. Retrieved August 31, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Lake Villa village, Illinois". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved December 11, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Lake Villa, Illinois". Retrieved August 31, 2012. 
  4. ^ This synopsis was provided by Debbie Effinger of the Village Hall of Lake Villa.
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  6. ^ "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2015-08-04. 
  7. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  8. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  9. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Brysiewicz, Joseph W. Chicago's metropolitan fringe: Lake Villa, Illinois: the construction of multiple historical narratives. Lake Forest, Illinois: Lake Forest College, 2001.
  • Brysiewicz, Joseph W. Lake Villa Township, Illinois. Chicago: Arcadia Publications, 2001.
  • Article by Douglas Knox in Encyclopedia of Chicago History
  • Encyclopedia of Chicago. Edited by James R. Grossman, Ann Durkin Keating & Janice L. Reiff. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2004
  • Lake Villa then and now: centennial history of Lake Villa, Illinois, 1901 - 2001. Compiled and edited by Candace M. Saunders and Julianne Kloc Trychta. Lake Villa, Illinois: Village of Lake Villa, Illinois, 2001.

External links[edit]