Macon County
Wabash Railroad Station and Railway Express Agency in Decatur
Map of Illinois highlighting Macon County
Location within the U.S. state of Illinois
Map of the United States highlighting Illinois
Illinois's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 39°52′N 88°58′W / 39.86°N 88.96°W / 39.86; -88.96
Country United States
State Illinois
Founded19 January 1829
Named forNathaniel Macon
SeatDecatur
Largest cityDecatur
Area
 • Total586 sq mi (1,520 km2)
 • Land581 sq mi (1,500 km2)
 • Water5.2 sq mi (13 km2)  0.9%
Population
 (2010)
 • Total110,768
 • Estimate 
(2019)
104,009
 • Density190/sq mi (73/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district13th
Websitewww.co.macon.il.us

Macon County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 United States Census, it had a population of 110,768.[1] Its county seat is Decatur.[2]

Macon County comprises the Decatur, IL Metropolitan Statistical Area.

History

Macon County was formed on January 19, 1829, out of Shelby County. It was named for Nathaniel Macon, a Colonel in the Revolutionary War.[3] Macon later served as senator from North Carolina until his resignation in 1828. In 1830, future US President Abraham Lincoln and his family moved to Macon County.

Geography

Plaque honoring 2,486 Macon County soldiers that fought in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-65
Plaque honoring 2,486 Macon County soldiers that fought in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-65

According to the US Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 586 square miles (1,520 km2), of which 581 square miles (1,500 km2) is land and 5.2 square miles (13 km2) (0.9%) is water.[4]

Macon County is primarily flat, as is most of the state and all of the surrounding counties, the result of geological activity during the Pleistocene epoch. During the Illinoian Stage of the Pleistocene, the Laurentide Ice Sheet covered about 85 percent of Illinois, including the Macon County area. The subsequent thaw of the region and retreat of the ice sheet left central Illinois with its present characteristic flat topography.[5]

Because of its central location, Macon County is often referred to as "The Heart of Illinois."[6]

Climate and weather

Decatur, Illinois
Climate chart (explanation)
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
 
 
2.1
 
 
35
17
 
 
2
 
 
41
22
 
 
3.2
 
 
53
32
 
 
3.6
 
 
65
42
 
 
4.5
 
 
76
52
 
 
3.9
 
 
85
61
 
 
4.5
 
 
88
65
 
 
4.1
 
 
86
63
 
 
3
 
 
80
55
 
 
2.7
 
 
68
44
 
 
3.3
 
 
52
34
 
 
2.9
 
 
39
23
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[7]

In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Decatur have ranged from a low of 17 °F (−8 °C) in January to a high of 88 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −25 °F (−32 °C) was recorded in February 1905 and a record high of 113 °F (45 °C) was recorded in July 1954. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 1.95 inches (50 mm) in February to 4.54 inches (115 mm) in July.[7]

Major highways

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
18301,122
18403,039170.9%
18503,98831.2%
186013,738244.5%
187026,48192.8%
188030,66515.8%
189038,08324.2%
190044,00315.5%
191054,18623.1%
192065,17520.3%
193081,73125.4%
194084,6933.6%
195098,85316.7%
1960118,25719.6%
1970125,0105.7%
1980131,3755.1%
1990117,206−10.8%
2000114,706−2.1%
2010110,768−3.4%
2019 (est.)104,009[8]−6.1%
US Decennial Census[9]
1790-1960[10] 1900-1990[11]
1990-2000[12] 2010-2019[1]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 110,768 people, 45,855 households, and 29,326 families residing in the county.[13] The population density was 190.8 inhabitants per square mile (73.7/km2). There were 50,475 housing units at an average density of 86.9 per square mile (33.6/km2).[4] The racial makeup of the county was 79.3% white, 16.3% black or African American, 1.0% Asian, 0.2% American Indian, 0.7% from other races, and 2.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.9% of the population.[13] In terms of ancestry, 21.7% were German, 17.0% were American, 12.9% were Irish, and 10.8% were English.[14]

Of the 45,855 households, 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.7% were married couples living together, 14.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 36.0% were non-families, and 30.9% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.89. The median age was 40.3 years.[13]

The median income for a household in the county was $44,337 and the median income for a family was $57,570. Males had a median income of $48,570 versus $31,568 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,726. About 10.3% of families and 15.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.1% of those under age 18 and 6.5% of those age 65 or over.[15]

Communities

Cities

Villages

Map of Macon County
Map of Macon County

Census-designated place

Unincorporated communities

Townships

Politics

In its early years Macon County favored the Democratic Party, voting for it in every election through 1860. Republican Abraham Lincoln won the county in the 1864 election, and from then until the Great Depression Macon County became solidly Republican, only giving a narrow plurality to Woodrow Wilson in 1912 when the GOP was mortally divided by Theodore Roosevelt's splinter–party run.

The FDR-era New Deal saw the county become more amenable to the Democratic Party again due to its strong industrial base. Macon County voted for the winner in every election from 1920 through 1996 save in 1960, 1968, and 1988, in two of which it voted for a losing Democrat over a winning Republican (Humphrey over Nixon in 1968 and Dukakis over George H. W. Bush in 1988). In 2000, Macon voted for a losing Democrat for the third time since the New Deal, as Al Gore narrowly held the county, but since then the county has once again trended Republican, as George W. Bush carried the county over John Kerry in 2004 with the same vote share as Reagan in his 1984 national landslide. Illinois native Barack Obama did carry the county with a plurality in his sweeping 2008 triumph, but was convincingly defeated by Mitt Romney in the county in 2012. In 2016, Hillary Clinton got the lowest vote share of any Democrat since George McGovern; and while Joe Biden improved on her vote share in 2020, he still failed to match McGovern's percentage.

United States presidential election results for Macon County, Illinois[16]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 28,589 57.88% 19,847 40.18% 954 1.93%
2016 26,866 55.90% 18,343 38.17% 2,851 5.93%
2012 25,309 51.62% 22,780 46.46% 941 1.92%
2008 24,948 48.55% 25,487 49.60% 954 1.86%
2004 28,118 54.34% 23,341 45.11% 287 0.55%
2000 23,830 48.14% 24,262 49.02% 1,407 2.84%
1996 18,161 38.45% 24,256 51.35% 4,818 10.20%
1992 18,684 33.62% 27,449 49.39% 9,447 17.00%
1988 23,862 48.22% 25,364 51.25% 263 0.53%
1984 30,457 54.28% 25,463 45.38% 192 0.34%
1980 28,298 52.45% 22,325 41.38% 3,333 6.18%
1976 24,893 46.44% 28,243 52.69% 463 0.86%
1972 29,596 59.16% 20,296 40.57% 137 0.27%
1968 21,027 42.27% 23,369 46.98% 5,345 10.75%
1964 17,957 33.88% 35,045 66.12% 0 0.00%
1960 27,151 50.95% 26,029 48.85% 108 0.20%
1956 27,673 54.51% 23,066 45.43% 32 0.06%
1952 25,744 53.56% 22,277 46.35% 45 0.09%
1948 18,719 46.27% 21,487 53.11% 250 0.62%
1944 19,608 46.06% 22,808 53.58% 153 0.36%
1940 19,998 41.78% 27,589 57.64% 277 0.58%
1936 15,585 35.84% 27,360 62.92% 541 1.24%
1932 16,868 42.87% 21,638 54.99% 840 2.13%
1928 24,492 70.68% 9,932 28.66% 230 0.66%
1924 16,458 60.22% 6,670 24.40% 4,203 15.38%
1920 16,486 65.27% 7,917 31.35% 854 3.38%
1916 13,997 52.90% 11,181 42.25% 1,283 4.85%
1912 3,356 27.33% 4,435 36.12% 4,487 36.55%
1908 6,643 55.98% 4,615 38.89% 608 5.12%
1904 6,284 62.79% 2,952 29.50% 772 7.71%
1900 6,086 54.26% 4,874 43.46% 256 2.28%
1896 6,216 55.73% 4,756 42.64% 182 1.63%
1892 4,575 48.04% 4,303 45.18% 646 6.78%


See also

Notes

References

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 6, 2011. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 195.
  4. ^ a b "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 12, 2020. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
  5. ^ Stiff, B. J., and A.K. Hansel, 2004, Quaternary glaciations in Illinois. in Ehlers, J., and P.L. Gibbard, eds., pp. 71-82, Quaternary Glaciations: Extent and Chronology 2: Part II North America, Elsevier, Amsterdam. ISBN 0-444-51462-7
  6. ^ "Visitors Information - Macon County Illinois". www.co.macon.il.us. Archived from the original on September 7, 2017. Retrieved May 1, 2018.
  7. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Decatur IL". The Weather Channel. Archived from the original on October 23, 2012. Retrieved January 27, 2011.
  8. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved May 21, 2020.
  9. ^ "US Decennial Census". US Census Bureau. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  10. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Archived from the original on August 11, 2012. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  11. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on April 24, 2014. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  12. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). US Census Bureau. Archived (PDF) from the original on December 18, 2014. Retrieved July 7, 2014.
  13. ^ a b c "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
  14. ^ "Selected Social Characteristics in the United States – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
  15. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved July 12, 2015.
  16. ^ Leip, David. "Atlas of US Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Archived from the original on March 23, 2018. Retrieved May 1, 2018.

Coordinates: 39°52′N 88°58′W / 39.86°N 88.96°W / 39.86; -88.96