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The McHenry Riverwalk
|Nickname(s): The Heart of the Fox|
Location of McHenry in McHenry County, Illinois
|Townships||McHenry Township. Nunda Township|
|Founded||May 10, 1836 |
|Named for||William McHenry|
|• Mayor||Wayne Jett|
|• Total||15.04 sq mi (38.96 km2)|
|• Land||14.61 sq mi (37.83 km2)|
|• Water||0.43 sq mi (1.13 km2)|
|Elevation||797 ft (243 m)|
|• Estimate (2016)||26,611|
|• Density||1,821.80/sq mi (703.41/km2)|
|Time zone||CST (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
|ZIP Code(s)||60050 and 60051|
|GNIS feature ID||424159|
|Wikimedia Commons||McHenry, Illinois|
McHenry is a city in McHenry County, Illinois, United States. The 2010 U.S. census reported its population at 26,992 and rests at an elevation of 797 feet . McHenry was at one time the county seat of McHenry County, which once included adjoining Lake County to the east. McHenry took its name from McHenry County, which was named for Major William McHenry, an Indian fighter.
McHenry is surrounded by natural lakes and streams, grassy moraine hills, gravel banks and shallow nutrient-rich peat bogs, remnants of receding glaciers from the last ice age. Moraine Hills State Park and Volo Bog State Natural Area preserve some of these natural features.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Government
- 4 Demographics
- 5 Culture
- 6 Recreation
- 7 Economy
- 8 Education
- 9 Transportation
- 10 Notable people
- 11 Notable horses
- 12 References
- 13 External links
George Gage came to the area in 1835 and purchased a plot of land west of the Fox River. This area eventually came to be known as Gagetown. In 1854, George Gage played an instrumental role in bringing the railroad to the city. Gagetown was eventually renamed to West McHenry.
In 1851, a dam was built on Boone Creek which created Mill Pond. The pond encompassed an area between today's rail road tracks and Route 31 and north of Waukegan Road.
In 1860, the historical Count's House was completed.
In 1880, the first bridge in McHenry was built at Pearl Street.
On March 30th, 1908 a train bound for Ringwood crashed near the McHenry train depot. One person was killed. 
In 1929, Mill Pond was drained by removing the dam on Boone Creek.
The original Pearl Street bridge was dismantled in 1976 and rebuilt using concrete. The bridge was split into multiple parts and relocated. One part sits on the grounds of TC Industries in Crystal Lake. Another sits in a county storage unit.
In 1985, the McHenry Plaindealer became part of the Northwest Herald.
McHenry is located 60 miles northwest of Chicago in northern Illinois on the Fox River. According to the 2010 census, McHenry has a total area of 15.175 square miles (39.30 km2), of which 14.74 square miles (38.18 km2) (or 97.13%) is land and 0.435 square miles (1.13 km2) (or 2.87%) is water. McHenry lies within the Fox River Valley, and its downtown area is situated on that river which is how it earned the nickname "The Heart of the Fox".
See the full article, List of mayors of McHenry, Illinois.
- Wayne Jett
The city council consists of representatives from the 7 city wards:
- Ward 1 - Victor A. Santi
- Ward 2 - Andrew Glab
- Ward 3 - Jeffrey A. Schaefer
- Ward 4 - Scott Curry
- Ward 5 - Richard Wimmer
- Ward 6 - Patrick Devine
- Ward 7 - Geri A. Condon
Lynzi Nevitt is the City Clerk and is supported by the Deputy City Clerk, Marci Geraghty.
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The population density was 1,850.2 per square mile (714.4/km²). There were 8,127 housing units at an average density of 699.4 per square mile (270.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.18% White, 0.35% African American, 0.21% Native American, 0.89% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 3.31% from other races, and 1.02% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino people of any race were 7.10% of the population.
There were 7,872 households of which 38.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.2% were married couples living together, 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.4% were non-families. 24.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.70 and the average family size was 3.25.
Age distribution was 28.5% under the age of 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 32.7% from 25 to 44, 19.9% from 45 to 64, and 11.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 94.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.2 males.
The median household income was $55,759, and the median family income was $66,040. Males had a median income of $46,552 versus $29,808 for females. The per capita income for the city was $23,272. About 3.8% of families and 4.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.1% of those under age 18 and 2.6% of those age 65 or over.
McHenry is home to Fiesta Days, a ten-day festival in the middle of the summer that includes music, parades, food, car shows, and more.
Historic Places on the National Register
There once was a movie theater downtown but it was closed in 2014. In 2017 it was announced that it would be reopening and renovated in late 2017. A drive-in theater east of town is open during the summer months.
Major industrial users including Medela, Follett School Solutions, Fabrik Industries, and Plaspros have located in the city's business parks. Centegra Hospital - McHenry provides emergency and in and out-patient health care services to the city and surrounding areas. Steady residential growth has resulted in significant commercial development. The north Richmond Road corridor has become a destination for shoppers in the northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin areas with numerous "big box" retailers and smaller chains.
Schools and libraries
There are two school districts serving the city of McHenry: McHenry Community High School District 156 and McHenry School District 15. District 156 oversees two high schools while District 15 oversees five elementary schools and three middle schools.
McHenry is served by one public library which is part of Cooperative Computer Services (CCS) consortium. The library itself houses physical books, DVDs, magazines, and more as well as providing access to online digital content. The library also offers various training classes on various topics and has several meeting rooms available for use by request.
The closest private airport to the city is Galt Airport in Wonderlake.
The Prairie Trail runs through the middle of McHenry from Crystal Lake and connects to trails near the border of Wisconsin.
McHenry is currently the terminus of a branch line on Metra's Union Pacific/Northwest Line, with daily passenger service to Ogilvie Transportation Center (Northwestern Station) in downtown Chicago. The line that now terminates at McHenry once continued to Williams Bay, Wisconsin, but that service was discontinued in stages in the 1960s and 1970s.
There have been talks by IDOT to extend US Route 12 from the border of Wisconsin at Genoa City through northern McHenry and eventually connect with the proposed Route 53 extension (FAP 342). The Route 12 extension is also known as the Richmond-Waukegan Expressway (FAP 420), but plans for this have been stalled for decades.     
- Gary Adams (d. 2000), founded TaylorMade Golf in McHenry in 1979
- John Brzenk (b. 1964), world champion arm wrestler
- Rob Doran (b. 1976), original bassist of the rock band Alkaline Trio
- Jason Faunt (b. 1974), actor, grew up in McHenry
- Mariann Mayberry (b. 1965), member of Steppenwolf Theatre Company, lived in McHenry and graduated from McHenry High School (West Campus)
- Jace Sayler (b. 1979), football player with the New England Patriots (Super Bowl champion), attended McHenry High School (West Campus)
- Matt Skiba (b. 1976), co-lead singer and guitarist for the rock bands Blink-182 and Alkaline Trio
- Joe Walsh (b. 1961), radio personality and former congressman (Republican) for the 8th district
- Two Eyed Jack, born in McHenry; Quarter Horse stallion and showhorse; the leading all time sire of American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) champions   
- "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved Jun 29, 2017.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
- Chicago and North Western Railway Company (1908). A History of the Origin of the Place Names Connected with the Chicago & North Western and Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha Railways. p. 100.
- Munsell Publishing Company (1922). History of McHenry County, Illinois (Vol 1).
- Munsell Publishing Company (1922). History of McHenry County, Illinois (Vol 2).
- "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2015-12-27.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Archived from the original on 12 May 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- Union Pacific / Northwest (UP-NW) Line Map
- Behrens, P. L. (2002). Steam Trains to Geneva Lake: C&NW's Elgin – Williams Bay Branch.
- Dodson, James (May–June 1998). "Ace of Clubs". Departures Magazine. American Express Publishing Corporation. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
- Wyss, Cyndi (15 May 2009). "Wyss: Economic uptick good, but bears price". Northwest Herald. Retrieved 31 August 2009.