Union County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 United States Census, it had a population of 17,808. Its county seat is Jonesboro. It is located in the southern portion of Illinois known locally as "Little Egypt".


Union County was formed out of Johnson County, nearly a year before the Illinois Territory gained statehood. It was named for a joint revival meeting of the Baptists and Dunkards, called a "union meeting". The county seal depicts the leaders of these two groups shaking hands. File:Union County Illinois 1818.png|For its first year of existence, Union County included an area of unorganized territory temporarily attached to it. File:Union County Illinois 1819.png|In 1819, the additional territory became Alexander County, reducing Union to its current borders.


According to the US Census Bureau, the county has a total area of , of which is land and (2.1%) is water.

Climate and weather

In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Jonesboro have ranged from a low of in January to a high of in July, although a record low of was recorded in January 1918 and a record high of was recorded in July 1901. Average monthly precipitation ranged from in September to in May.

Major highways

* Interstate 57 * U.S. Highway 51 * Illinois Route 3 * Illinois Route 127 * 20px Illinois Route 146

Adjacent counties

* Jackson County – north * Williamson County – northeast * Johnson County – east * Pulaski County – southeast * Alexander County – south * Cape Girardeau County, Missouri – west * Perry County, Missouri – northwest

Protected areas

* Brown Barrens Nature Preserve * Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge (partial) * Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge (partial) * Lincoln Memorial Picnic Grounds * Giant City State Park (partial) * McClure Shale Glade Nature Preserve * Trail of Tears State Forest * Shawnee National Forest (partial) * Union County State Fish and Wildlife Area


As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 17,808 people, 7,167 households, and 4,837 families residing in the county. The population density was . There were 7,924 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the county was 94.8% white, 0.9% black or African American, 0.5% American Indian, 0.3% Asian, 2.0% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 4.8% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 23.0% were German, 12.6% were Irish, 9.4% were English, and 8.1% were American. Of the 7,167 households, 29.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.6% were married couples living together, 10.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 32.5% were non-families, and 28.4% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.92. The median age was 42.9 years. The median income for a household in the county was $39,760 and the median income for a family was $48,465. Males had a median income of $36,831 versus $31,272 for females. The per capita income for the county was $19,512. About 12.7% of families and 21.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.5% of those under age 18 and 16.7% of those age 65 or over.



* Anna * Jonesboro (seat)


* Alto Pass * Cobden * Dongola * Mill Creek

Unincorporated communities

* Aldridge * Balcom * Lick Creek * Reynoldsville * Ware * Wolf Lake


Like much of Southern Illinois, Union County has shifted toward the Republican Party over the past couple decades, with the Republican candidate for president winning the county each of the past six elections, since 2000. In 2020, Donald Trump won the largest share of the vote ever for any candidate in Union County with 69.3% support.

See also

* National Register of Historic Places listings in Union County, Illinois



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External links

Union County Official Website

Union County State's Attorney

Union County Treasurer

Union County Chamber of Commerce
{{Coord|37|28|16|N|89|15|18|W|display=title|type:adm2nd_region:US-IL_source:GNIS Category:1818 establishments in Illinois Territory Category:Illinois counties Category:Illinois counties on the Mississippi River Category:Southern Illinois Category:Pre-statehood history of Illinois Category:Populated places established in 1818