Ransom, Illinois

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Ransom, Illinois
Plumb Street in Ransom
Plumb Street in Ransom
Location in LaSalle County, Illinois
Location in LaSalle County, Illinois
Location of Illinois in the United States
Location of Illinois in the United States
Coordinates: 41°9′21″N 88°39′11″W / 41.15583°N 88.65306°W / 41.15583; -88.65306Coordinates: 41°9′21″N 88°39′11″W / 41.15583°N 88.65306°W / 41.15583; -88.65306
CountryUnited States
 • Total1.00 sq mi (2.59 km2)
 • Land1.00 sq mi (2.59 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
706 ft (215 m)
 • Total384
 • Estimate 
 • Density356.36/sq mi (137.54/km2)
Time zoneUTC-6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP Code(s)
Area code(s)815
FIPS code17-62757
Wikimedia CommonsRansom, Illinois

Ransom is a village in LaSalle County, Illinois, United States. The population was 384 at the 2010 census.[3] It is part of the Ottawa Micropolitan Statistical Area. It is part of the subregion known as Streatorland.


Ransom was a planned community; ads were placed in the Streator Monitor as early as 1876 calling for shopkeepers, craftsmen, and tradesmen to locate and set up shop in the area. In 1885, the village of Ransom was officially incorporated. The earliest businesses in Ransom included a hotel, saloon, doctor, carpenter, pharmacist, grocery store, cash exchange and a blacksmith. On the edge of the newly developing business district a small wooden water tower was constructed. In 1892 a fire devastated the eastern side of the business district, stymieing the village's growth and causing some business owners to close up shop forever.[4]

After the fire, and much back and forth, the village constructed a new public waterworks with a 68 feet water tower at its center in 1896. The village flourished after the fire, eventually reaching a population peak of around 600 following World War II. On September 7, 1903 the first phone service reached Ransom, and AT&T opened a telegraph office in 1905. Between 1905–1910 the village constructed a sidewalk system. The first electric street lamps appeared on May 7, 1910 with the acquisition of a dozen electric street lamps from Illinois Valley Gas and Electric. Electricity gradually made its way into the homes of Ransom following the introduction of the street lamps.[4]


The village was named for American Civil War general Thomas E. G. Ransom, who was born in Vermont but lived as a young man in Illinois.[5]


Ransom is located in southeastern LaSalle County at 41°9′21″N 88°39′11″W / 41.15583°N 88.65306°W / 41.15583; -88.65306 (41.155955, -88.653178),[6] at the center of Allen Township. Illinois Route 170 runs along the eastern border of the village, leading north 13 miles (21 km) to Seneca along the Illinois River, and south 20 miles (32 km) to Pontiac.

According to the 2010 census, Ransom has a total area of 1 square mile (2.59 km2), all land.[7]


Historical population
Census Pop.
2019 (est.)356[2]−7.3%
U.S. Decennial Census[8]

As of the census[9] of 2000, there were 409 people, 147 households, and 109 families residing in the village. The population density was 412.6 people per square mile (159.5/km2). There were 159 housing units at an average density of 160.4 per square mile (62.0/km2). The racial makeup of the village was 98.04% White, 0.24% African American, 0.24% Native American, 0.24% from other races, and 1.22% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.18% of the population.

There were 147 households, out of which 39.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.6% were married couples living together, 5.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.2% were non-families. 23.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.78 and the average family size was 3.29.

In the village, the population was spread out, with 30.1% under the age of 18, 5.6% from 18 to 24, 30.3% from 25 to 44, 22.7% from 45 to 64, and 11.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.2 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $53,333, and the median income for a family was $55,682. Males had a median income of $46,458 versus $21,250 for females. The per capita income for the village was $17,524. About 2.3% of families and 1.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including none of those under the age of eighteen or sixty-five or over.


  1. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 14, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
  3. ^ "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Census Summary File 1 (DP-1), Ransom village, Illinois". American FactFinder. U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved January 3, 2020.
  4. ^ a b Cahill, Marianne. "Ransom Water Tower[permanent dead link]", (PDF), August 1, 1990, Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, accessed May 11, 2008.
  5. ^ Gannett, Henry. The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States, (Google Books), Government Printing Office, Washington DC: 1905, p. 258
  6. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  7. ^ "G001 – Geographic Identifiers – 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved December 25, 2015.
  8. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  9. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.

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