"Historic past, dynamic future"
Location of Zion in Lake County, Illinois.
Location of Illinois in the United States
|Founded by||John Alexander Dowie|
|Named for||Mount Zion, Israel|
|• Total||9.79 sq mi (25.35 km2)|
|• Land||9.79 sq mi (25.35 km2)|
|• Water||0.00 sq mi (0.01 km2)|
|Elevation||615 ft (187 m)|
(9th St and Greenbay Rd.)
|740 ft (230 m)|
|Lowest elevation||582 ft (177 m)|
| • Estimate |
|• Density||2,400.06/sq mi (926.68/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (CST)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
|Area codes||847, 224|
|Wikimedia Commons||Zion, Illinois|
The city was founded in July 1901 by John Alexander Dowie (1847-1907), a Scots-Australian evangelical minister and faith healer who had immigrated to the United States in 1888. By 1890 he had settled in Chicago, where he built a large faith healing business (which included a large mail order component) and had attracted thousands of followers.
Dowie also founded the Zion Tabernacle of the Christian Catholic Apostolic Church, which was the only church in town. The structure was built in the early 1900s and burned down in 1937, during the Great Depression.
Zion is located at .
According to the 2010 census, Zion has a total area of 9.813 square miles (25.42 km2), of which 9.81 square miles (25.41 km2) (or 99.97%) is land and 0.003 square miles (0.01 km2) (or 0.03%) is water.
- Sheridan Road
- 21st Street/Bethlehem Avenue
- Green Bay Road
- Galilee Avenue
- 9th Street
- Shiloh Boulevard
- 23rd Street
- 29th Street
- 33rd Street
- Lewis Avenue
- Wadsworth Road
Illinois Beach State Park
Zion is the closest municipality to South Beach within Illinois Beach State Park. The North Beach is in Winthrop Harbor. The beach was originally part of Camp Logan, developed in 1892 as a rifle range by the Illinois National Guard. In World War I and World War II, it served as a rifle range for the Great Lakes Naval Training Station. The range remained in operation until 1973, when it was transferred to the Illinois Department of Conservation.
In 1950, the Illinois Dunes Preservation Society was established to maintain the natural qualities of the beach. With the help of the Illinois Department of Conservation, the area south of Beach Road was established as the state's first natural preserve. The sections of the northern beach, between Beach Road and the Wisconsin state border, were acquired by the state between 1971 and 1982.
The Illinois Beach Resort and Conference Center is located at the south beach. The North Point Marina, one of the largest in the Great Lakes region, is at the north beach. It is Illinois' newest and largest marina.
On May 9, 2000, the area encompassing Illinois Beach State Park and North Point Marina was officially designated as the Cullerton Complex in honor of William J. Cullerton, Sr., a war hero, avid environmentalist, and long-time friend of conservation.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2010, there were 24,508 people, 7,552 households, and 5,558 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,789.5 people per square mile (1,076.7/km2). There were 8,036 housing units at an average density of 980.3 per square mile (378.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 48.9% White, 31.10% African American, 0.4% Native American, 2.3% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 12% from other races, and 5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 27.7% of the population.
There were 7,552 households, out of which 44.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.9% were married couples living together, 20.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.4% were non-families. 21.6% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.96 and the average family size was 3.44.
In the city, the population was spread out, with 33.2% under the age of 18, 9.5% from 18 to 24, 31.4% from 25 to 44, 17.4% from 45 to 64, and 8.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $45,723, and the median income for a family was $50,378. Males had a median income of $37,455 versus $27,563 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,730. About 10.1% of families and 11.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.5% of those under age 18 and 7.7% of those age 65 or over.
The city is served by Metra's Union Pacific/North Line through Zion railway station on the east side. It connects the city to Chicago, Kenosha, and intermediate communities. Pace bus line 571 provides internal transit service in Zion and connects the city to Waukegan.
The 8,500-seat Fielders Stadium was planned to open in May 2010. Once completed, it was to host the home games of the Lake County Fielders North American League baseball team co-owned by actor Kevin Costner. The Fielders' name is an homage to Costner's 1989 film Field of Dreams, with the logo showing a ballplayer standing amid a field of corn.
The Fielders' site has been subject to a court dispute between the owners and the city over a breach in contract.
- The 16th Gyalwa Karmapa died in Zion
- Bill Blagg III, Illusionist, grew up in Zion and attended Buelah Park Elementary School 
- Jarvis Brown, member of 1991 World Series champion Minnesota Twins
- Richard Bull, actor, "Nels Olson" on Little House on the Prairie
- Gary Coleman, actor, "Arnold Jackson" on Diff'rent Strokes
- Joe Daniels, drummer for Local H
- John Alexander Dowie, founder of Zion
- Paul Erickson, baseball player, mostly with Chicago Cubs
- John Hammond, general manager of the Milwaukee Bucks
- Scott Lucas, lead singer and guitarist for Local H
- Billy McKinney, former NBA player, former NBA general manager, former commentator and current head scout for the Milwaukee Bucks
- Juan Moreno, two-time Olympic silver medalist (1992 and 1988) in Taekwondo in the Fin-weight (under 50 kg) class and three-time Olympian (2000, 1992, 1988); assistant coach with the U.S. Olympic Team at the 2008 Olympics
- Russell Nype, star of Broadway's Call Me Madam and Hello, Dolly! and Tony Award winner
- Shoes, power pop band including Gary Klebe, Jeff Murphy, John Murphy
The former city seal was the subject of a 1990 Federal Court case, because it featured a crown and scepter, a dove, a cross and the words “God Reigns”. The founder of Zion and designer of the city seal, John Alexander Dowie, intended for these to be Christian symbols and added them "for the purpose of the extension of the Kingdom of God upon earth ... where God shall rule in every department of family, industry, commercial, educational, ecclesiastical and political life." The court ruled the city could not use these religious symbols in its seals and emblems. While the Christian symbolism was removed, the phrase “In God We Trust” could be used on the new city seal since it was already acceptable religious language in the public arena.
- "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 14, 2020.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
- Zion (city), Illinois State & County QuickFacts, US Census Bureau
- 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. 142.
- Simane, Donald E. "The Flat Earth". Archived from the original on January 28, 2013. Retrieved September 4, 2008.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
- "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved December 27, 2015.
- State.il.us Archived June 1, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- Megan, Graydon (January 16, 2013). "William Cullerton, 1923-2013 WWII pilot, entrepreneur, radio host and well-known outdoorsman championed conservation". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 25, 2013.
- Grano, Laurie (May 10, 2000). "Cullerton Complex Christened At State Park". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved January 25, 2013.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- Rotenberk, Lori (April 4, 2009). "Major League Hopes Pinned on the Minors". New York Times. Retrieved May 19, 2009.
- "Lakecountybaseball". lakecountybaseball.com. Archived from the original on February 6, 2009. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
- "1991 World Series - Minnesota Twins over Atlanta Braves (4-3) | Baseball-Reference.com". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
- 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Media Guide.
- "Looking for Life on a Flat Earth". The New Yorker. Retrieved June 1, 2018.
- "Harris v. City of Zion, 729 F. Supp. 1242 (N.D. Ill. 1990)". justia.com. Retrieved April 12, 2018.
- "Zion, IL". Encyclopedia of Chicago 2004-2005. Retrieved November 19, 2019.
- Cook, Philip L. (1996). Zion City, Illinois: Twentieth-Century Utopia. Syracuse, New York: Syracuse University Press. p. 283. ISBN 0-8156-2621-5. Cite has empty unknown parameter:
- Wallace, Irving (1957). Square Pegs: Some Americans Who Dared to Be Different. New York: Knopf. p. 315. Cite has empty unknown parameter:
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