Will County is a county located in the northern part of the U.S. state of Illinois.
county is part of the Chicago metropolitan area.
As of 2000, the population was 502,266. In
2007, the estimated population was 673,586, making it one of the
fastest growing counties in the United States. The county seat of Will County is Joliet,
portion of Will County around Joliet uses the 815 and 779 area
codes, 630 and 331 area code for far northern Will County, and 708
area code for eastern Will County.
According to the U.S.
county has a total area of 849 square miles (2,200 km²),
of which 837 square miles (2,168 km²) is land and
12 square miles (32 km²) (1.47%) is water.
Kankakee River, Du Page River and the Des Plaines
River run through the county and join on its western
border. The Illinois and Michigan Canal and the Chicago Sanitary and Ship
Canal run through Will County.
A number of areas are preserved as parks (over 20,000 acres total)
under the Forest
Preserve District of Will County
. The 17,000 acre (69 km²)
is a U.S.
Forest Service park in the county on the
grounds of the former Joliet Arsenal. Other parks include Channahon State
Park and the Des Plaines Fish
and Wildlife Area.
County was formed in 1836 out of Cook, Iroquois and Vermilion Counties.
It was named after Dr. Conrad Will, a
businessman involved in salt production in southern Illinois, and
also a politician. (At that time, the law allowed slaves to be
leased from other states and used in the free
of Illinois only for salt production.) Will was a member
of the first Illinois Constitutional Convention and a member of the
Illinois Legislature until his death in 1835. On January 12, 1836,
Will County was formed from Cook County and Iroquois County.
included besides its present area, the part of Kankakee
County, Illinois lying north of the Kankakee River.
Will County lost that
area when Kankakee County was organized in 1852, but since then its
boundaries have been unchanged.
From the 1854 US Gazetteer:
As of the census
of 2000, there were 502,266
people, 167,542 households, and 131,017 families residing in the
county. The population density
was 600 people per square mile (232/km²). There were 175,524
housing units at an average density of 210 per square mile
(81/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 81.83% White
, 10.45% Black
or African American
, 0.21% Native American
, 2.21% Asian
, 0.03% Pacific Islander
, 3.63% from
, and 1.63%
from two or more races. 8.71% of the population were Hispanic
of any race. 18.1% were
, 12.8% Irish
, 10.1% Polish
and 9.8% Italian
ancestry according to Census 2000
There were 167,542 households out of which 42.70% had children
under the age of 18 living with them, 64.80% were married couples
living together, 9.60% had a female
householder with no husband present, and 21.80% were non-families.
17.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.00% had
someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average
household size was 2.94 and the average family size was 3.36.
In the county the population was spread out with 30.00% under the
age of 18, 8.10% from 18 to 24, 32.90% from 25 to 44, 20.60% from
45 to 64, and 8.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median
age was 33 years. For every 100 females there were 99.80 males. For
every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.40 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $62,238, and
the median income for a family was $69,608 (these figures had risen
to $73,159 and $82,082 respectively as of a 2007 estimate). Males
had a median income of $50,152 versus $31,345 for females. The
per capita income
for the county
was $24,613. About 3.40% of families and 4.90% of the population
were below the poverty line
5.60% of those under age 18 and 5.50% of those age 65 or
Will County is divided into these townships
State University is a 6,000-student four-year public university
located in University Park, Illinois. Lewis
University is a 5,200-student four-year private university
located in Romeoville, Illinois. Rasmussen College - Romeoville / Joliet
private, 4 year, regionally accredited online college with support
county is in Community College District 525 and is served by
Joliet Junior College in
Joliet Junior College was the first two-year higher education
institution in the United States.
county is a major hub in the United States natural gas pipeline grid where pipelines from
Canada and the
Mexico meet and then fan out to serve the
Major highways in the county include Interstate 55
and Interstate 80
. The Interstate 355
toll road extension has been
completed and now connects with Interstate
different Metra commuter rail lines (Metra Electric Main Line, Southwest Service, Rock Island District and Heritage Corridor) connect the parts of
the county with the Chicago
The following sites, in Will County, Illinois, are on the National Register of
|Alternate Route 66, Wilmington to Joilet
||IL 53 between Wilmington and Joilet
|Christ Episcopal Church
||75 W. Van Buren St.
|Downtown Peotone Historic District
||Roughly N. First St. and both sides of N. Second St., roughly
bounded by the alley S of Main and N by North St.
||100-104 Water St.
||405 W. Main St.
|George, Ron, Round Barn
||NE of Romeoville off US 66
|Heck, John, House
||1225 S. Hamilton St.
|Henry, Jacob H., House
||20 S. Eastern Ave.
|Illinois and Michigan Canal
||. SW of Joliet on U.S. 6, in Channahon State Park
||215 N. Ottawa St.
|Joliet East Side Historic District
||Roughly bounded by Washington and Union Sts., 4th and Eastern
|Joliet Municipal Airport
||4000 W. Jefferson St.
|Joliet Steel Works
||927 Collins St.
|Joliet Township High School
||201 E. Jefferson St.
|Joliet, Louis, Hotel
||22 E. Clinton St.
|Lockport Historic District
||Area between 7th and 11th Sts. and Canal and Washington
||10824 LaPorte Rd.
|Milne, Robert, House
||535 E. 7th St.
|Ninth Street Seven Arch Stone Bridge
||Ninth St. spanning Deep Run Creek
||433 W. Corning Ave.
|Plainfield Halfway House
||503 Main St.
|Rubens Rialto Square Theater
||102 N. Chicago St.
|Scutt, Hiram B., Mansion
||206 N Broadway
||515 County Rd.
|Standard Oil Gasoline Station
||600 W. Lockport St.
||SE of Lockport
|U.S. Post Office
||150 N. Scott St.
||50 E. Jefferson St.
|Upper Bluff Historic District
||Roughly bounded by Taylor, Center and Campbell Sts. and Raynor
|Will County Historical Society Headquarters
||803 S. State St.