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Washington County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 census, it had a population of 14,716. Its county seat is Nashville. It is located in the southern portion of Illinois known locally as "Little Egypt".

History

Washington County was formed on January 2, 1818 out of St. Clair County. It was named for George Washington. Despite its relative proximity to the Illinois suburbs of St. Louis, Missouri, the county is not considered part of the St. Louis metropolitan area, also known as the Metro-East. In 1813, the Lively Massacre occurred near Little Crooked Creek. In 1959, the state established the Washington County State Recreation Area. Washington County was initially settled by immigrants from Kentucky who moved northward out of that state in the early 1800s. In the late 1800s there were (relatively) large numbers of immigrants who settled in Washington County, and by the early 1900s there were large numbers of first-generation immigrants still living in Washington County. They primarily came from the four countries of Germany, Poland, Ireland and England. File:Washington County Illinois 1818.png|Washington County from its 1818 creation to 1824 File:Washington County Illinois 1824.png|Washington County in 1824, reduced to its current borders by the creation of Clinton County

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of , of which is land and (0.2%) is water. There are many lakes, rivers, streams, and creeks in this area, including the Kaskaskia River, which is the county's northern border.

Climate and weather

In recent years, average temperatures in Nashville have ranged from a low of in January to a high of in July, although a record low of was recorded in December 1989 and a record high of was recorded in July 1980. Average monthly precipitation ranged from in January to in May. On November 17, 2013, an EF4 tornado swept through the area, destroying homes and causing two fatalities.

Major highways

* Interstate 64 * U.S. Highway 51 * Illinois Route 4 * Illinois Route 13 * Illinois Route 15 * Illinois Route 127 * Illinois Route 153 * Illinois Route 177 * Illinois Route 160

Adjacent counties

* Clinton County (north) * Marion County (northeast) * Jefferson County (east) * Perry County (south) * Randolph County (southwest) * St. Clair County (west)

Demographics

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 14,716 people, 5,926 households, and 4,112 families residing in the county. The population density was . There were 6,534 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the county was 97.7% white, 0.7% black or African American, 0.3% Asian, 0.1% American Indian, 0.4% from other races, and 0.8% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.3% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 53.6% were German, 14.0% were Polish, 13.1% were Irish, 7.7% were English, and 6.1% were American. Of the 5,926 households, 30.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.6% were married couples living together, 7.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 30.6% were non-families, and 25.9% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family size was 2.93. The median age was 42.3 years. The median income for a household in the county was $51,440 and the median income for a family was $64,171. Males had a median income of $44,272 versus $30,683 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,846. About 5.5% of families and 9.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.2% of those under age 18 and 8.9% of those age 65 or over.

Education

The county is served by six school districts: * Oakdale CCSD 1 * West Washington County CUD 10 * Irvington CCSD 11 * Ashley CCSD 15 * Nashville CCSD 49 * Nashville Community High School District 99

Communities



Cities

* Ashley * Centralia * Nashville

Villages

* Addieville * Du Bois * Hoyleton * Irvington * New Minden * Oakdale * Okawville * Radom * Richview * Venedy

Unincorporated communities

* Beaucoup * Clarmin * Cordes * Elkton * Huegely * Lively Grove * Plum Hill * Posen * Pyramid * Stone Church

Townships

Washington County is divided into these townships: * Ashley * Beaucoup * Bolo * Covington * DuBois * Hoyleton * Irvington * Johannisburg * Lively Grove * Nashville * Oakdale * Okawville * Pilot Knob * Plum Hill * Richview * Venedy

Politics

Washington is a rural conservative county in Southern Illinois that has always trended Republican in presidential elections. The only Democrat to win a majority of the county's ballots since the Civil War was Franklin D. Roosevelt in his 1932 landslide. Historically, the county was dominated by organized labor and family farms. The area tends to be economically and socially conservative.


Media


WNSV in Nashville is the only radio station in the county. The two weekly newspapers in the county are ''The Nashville News'', located in Nashville, and ''The Okawville Times'', which is based in Okawville.


See also


* Lively massacre * National Register of Historic Places listings in Washington County

References

;Specific ;General *

External links

* {{Coord|38|21|08|N|89|24|38|W|display=title|type:adm2nd_region:US-IL_source:GNIS Category:1818 establishments in Illinois Territory Category:Illinois counties Category:Southern Illinois Category:Populated places established in 1818 Category:Pre-statehood history of Illinois