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DeKalb County, Illinois

DeKalb County, Illinois
DeKalb County's Legislative Center
Seal of DeKalb County, Illinois
Map of Illinois highlighting DeKalb County
Location in the state of Illinois
Map of the United States highlighting Illinois
Illinois's location in the U.S.
Founded March 4, 1837
Named for Johann de Kalb
Seat Sycamore
Largest city DeKalb
 • Total 635 sq mi (1,645 km2)
 • Land 631 sq mi (1,634 km2)
 • Water 3.4 sq mi (9 km2), 0.5%
 • (2010) 105,160
 • Density 167/sq mi (64/km²)
Congressional districts 14th, 16th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Website .org.dekalbcountywww

DeKalb County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. As of the 2010 census, the population was 105,160.[1] Its county seat is Sycamore.[2]

DeKalb County is part of the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI Metropolitan Statistical Area.


  • History 1
  • Pronunciation 2
  • Geography 3
    • Climate and weather 3.1
    • Adjacent counties 3.2
    • Major highways 3.3
  • Demographics 4
  • Communities 5
    • Cities 5.1
    • Town 5.2
    • Villages 5.3
    • Townships 5.4
  • See also 6
  • Notes 7
  • References 8
  • Further reading 9
  • External links 10


DeKalb County was formed on March 4, 1837,[3] out of Kane County, Illinois. The County was named in honor of Johann de Kalb,[4] a German (Bavarian) hero of the American Revolutionary War. DeKalb County is approximately 632.7 square miles, located 63 miles west of Chicago. There are 19 townships in the county with the county seat at Sycamore.

Between 1834 and 1837, early white men began to settle in DeKalb County along the streams and wooded areas because of the fertile soil, wild game, and food and water opportunities. Major growth stemmed from the introduction of the railroad which brought easier methods of transportation and opportunities for industrial growth. Some of the notable industries based in DeKalb County were: Sandwich Manufacturing Company, Marsh Harvester Company, Barbed Wire, Gurler Brothers Pure Milk and many more.

The county has always been noted for agriculture. In 1852, the first Agricultural Fair was held in Sycamore, under the supervision of the DeKalb Agricultural Society. Eventually farmers, businessmen, bankers and newspapermen organized to become the DeKalb County Soil Improvement Association. In later years the DeKalb County Soil Improvement Association would split into two and become DeKalb County Farm Bureau and DeKalb Agricultural Association (DEKALB AgResearch, Inc., Monsanto). DeKalb County is credited with being the birthplace of the Farm Bureau movement.

Education has played an important role in the area with Northern Illinois University located in DeKalb and Kishwaukee Community College located in Malta. A major fair has been held each year since 1887 at the Sandwich Fairgrounds in Sandwich.


Unlike similarly spelled locations, such as

  • Official website
  • History pages for DeKalb County towns and cities
  • De Kalb County at DMOZ
  • DeKalb County Youth Service Bureau
  • Taming the Wild Prairie: A History of DeKalb County, Illinois, 1837-1900, Illinois Historical Digitization Projects at Northern Illinois University Libraries
  • DeKalb County Online Newspaper

External links

Further reading

  • Forstall, Richard L. (editor) (1996). Population of states and counties of the United States: 1790 to 1990 : from the twenty-one decennial censuses. United States Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Population Division.  
  • United States Census Bureau 2007 TIGER/Line Shapefiles
  • U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: DeKalb County, Illinois
  • United States National Atlas


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 4, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ Illinois Regional Archives Depository System. "Name Index to Illinois Local Governments". Illinois State Archives.  
  4. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 103. 
  5. ^ a b "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County".  
  6. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Sycamore, Illinois". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 
  7. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  8. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 4, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 4, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 4, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 4, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b c "DP-1 Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data".  
  13. ^ "DP02 SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates".  
  14. ^ "DP03 SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates".  


See also

DeKalb County is divided into nineteen townships:






The median income for a household in the county was $54,002 and the median income for a family was $70,713. Males had a median income of $50,192 versus $35,246 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,179. About 7.7% of families and 14.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.2% of those under age 18 and 4.5% of those age 65 or over.[14]

Of the 38,484 households, 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.2% were married couples living together, 10.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 38.2% were non-families, and 25.8% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.11. The median age was 29.3 years.[12]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 105,160 people, 38,484 households, and 23,781 families residing in the county.[12] The population density was 166.6 inhabitants per square mile (64.3/km2). There were 41,079 housing units at an average density of 65.1 per square mile (25.1/km2).[5] The racial makeup of the county was 85.1% white, 6.4% black or African American, 2.3% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 3.9% from other races, and 2.0% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 10.1% of the population.[12] In terms of ancestry, 32.6% were German, 17.5% were Irish, 8.7% were English, 7.0% were Polish, 6.4% were Italian, 6.3% were Swedish, and 3.8% were American.[13]

2000 census age pyramid for DeKalb County


Major highways

Adjacent counties

In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Sycamore have ranged from a low of 10 °F (−12 °C) in January to a high of 84 °F (29 °C) in July, although a record low of −27 °F (−33 °C) was recorded in January 1985 and a record high of 103 °F (39 °C) was recorded in August 1988. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 1.40 inches (36 mm) in February to 4.49 inches (114 mm) in June.[6]

Sycamore, Illinois
Climate chart ()
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[6]

Climate and weather

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 635 square miles (1,640 km2), of which 631 square miles (1,630 km2) is land and 3.4 square miles (8.8 km2) (0.5%) is water.[5]


, with an L sound, as opposed to a silent "L."

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