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Overview

Introduction to Waukegan, Illinois

Waukegan is situated along the shore of Lake Michigan in Lake County. It's located approximately midway between Chicago and Milwaukee. Although he was born in Chicago, the city of Waukegan is recognized as the hometown of the famous comedian Jack Benny. A statue of him is situated downtown.

History

The municipality is recognized as one of the earliest communities in the state. It began as a French trading base and a Potawatomi Indian settlement called Little Fort. In 1829 the Potawatomi signed a treaty which relinquished their land to the Federal Government.

In 1849 the town was renamed Waukegan. The name translates to "fort" in the Potawatomi language. The early residents utilized the area as a port to ship produce and grains to Chicago. Due to the arrival of the railroad in 1855 the city developed into a manufacturing center.

Attractions

  • Genesee Theatre offers concerts, musicals and comedy acts
  • Jack Benny Center for the Arts
  • Marytown/National Religious Shrine features beautiful stain glass windows and large, attractive mosaics
  • Kenosha Military Museum
  • Great Lakes Naval Museum showcases numerous artifacts and memorabilia regarding the history of the Navy. Tours of the Great Lakes Naval Training Center are provided
  • Bowen Park Theater & Opera Companies
  • Waukegan Community Players
  • Cuneo Museum & Gardens is a historic mansion featuring Italianate architecture, situated on a large acreage which includes a variety of gardens
  • Waukegan Harbor
  • Waukegan Yacht Club
  • Lake County Discovery Museum includes the Vortex Roller Coaster Theater and a beautiful forest area
  • Temple Lipizzans

Activities

Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy the recreational trail which traverses through town. The Waukegan Municipal Beach features a sandy shoreline and natural dunes. The beach provides opportunities for swimming, volleyball, picnicking and other activities. The Illinois Beach State Park is another popular destination. The Bonnie Brook Country Club, Greenshire Golf Course and the Midlane Golf Resort are some of the popular locations for golf enthusiasts.

Waukegan Beach and Bowen Park located on the shoreline of Lake Michigan provide a great opportunity to view migrating hawks, a variety of shorebirds, ducks and passerines. The Chain O' Lakes State Park is a large acreage which provides excellent nature trails, opportunities for camping, horseback riding, canoeing, rafting and other activities.

Transportation

The city is home to the Waukegan Regional Airport. The Metro offers transportation from Waukegan to Chicago by way of the Union Pacific North Line. Pace offers bus service in the city and nearby areas.

People

Total Population 88,570
Male Share of the Population 49.6%
Female Share of the Population 50.4%
Senior Citizens 8.5%
Employed Population 16+ 40,476
Age of the Population 31

Families

% of people married 42.6%
Average household size 3

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 17.8%
Median Earnings25+ $26,807
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $20,275
Median Earnings With High School Degree $22,406

Wealth

Median Family Income $50,874
% Above Poverty Level 78.3%
% Below Poverty Level 21.7%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 26 minutes
% Working from Home 3.4%
% Walking and Biking to Work 1.7%
% Using Public Transportation 3.5%

Housing

People Living Alone 25.1%
Median Gross Rent $883
Median House Value $121,200

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 73.8%
US/American 0.2%
English 2.3%
Irish 4.3%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Waukegan Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 36 miles N of Chicago, Illinois
County Lake
Standard Zip Codes 60085, 60087
P.O. Box Zip Codes 60079
Phone Area Codes 847
Time Zone Central (-6 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 42.363
Longitude -87.844

Waukegan Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Station WAUKEGAN
Distance 2.2 miles
Jan Temp 12 to 29 F
Apr Temp 36 to 55 F
Jul Temp 61 to 82 F
Oct Temp 41 to 62 F
Annual Precip 34 inches
Station LAKE VILLA 2 NE
Distance 12.3 miles
Jan Temp 12 to 28 F
Apr Temp 36 to 56 F
Jul Temp 62 to 82 F
Oct Temp 42 to 60 F
Annual Precip 35.5 inches
Station CHICAGO BOTANICAL GARDEN
Distance 16.2 miles
Jan Temp 14 to 30 F
Apr Temp 37 to 56 F
Jul Temp 63 to 83 F
Oct Temp 42 to 63 F
Annual Precip 36.8 inches

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Beach Park 13,833 $71,225
Gurnee 31,136 $103,537

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Waukegan Public Libraries

Library
Waukegan P.l.
128 N. COUNTY STREET
Waukegan, Illinois
(847) 623-2041
Library Web Site

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More Information for Librarians

Waukegan Hospitals

WAUKEGAN ILLINOIS HOSPITAL COMPANY LLC
(Voluntary non-profit - Church)
2615 WASHINGTON ST
(847) 249-3900
Emergency Service: Yes

WAUKEGAN ILLINOIS HOSPITAL COMPANY LLC DBA
(Voluntary non-profit - Other)
1324 NORTH SHERIDAN ROAD
(847) 360-4000
Emergency Service: Yes

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Waukegan High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

WAUKEGAN HIGH SCHOOL
2325 BROOKSIDE AVE
847-360-5621
Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 2,743 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 18.3

ALTERNATIVE OPTIONAL CENTER
1020 GLEN ROCK
847-360-5540
A Special Education School
Serves 155 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 77.5

ABDSSC SCH-3RD FLOOR
1011 WASHINGTON ST
847-360-5511
A Special Education School
Serves 25 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 3.1

Study Online in Waukegan
Historic Waukegan

photo

Court House and Soldiers' Monument (Waukegan) ca. 1900

Select a photo to view (Source):

Court House and Soldiers' Monument (Waukegan) ca. 1900

C. & N.W. Ry. i.e. Chicago & North Western Railway station ca. 1900

C. & N.W. Ry. i.e. Chicago & North Western Railway station ca. 1900

Additional Resources
Info for Waukegan Government Officials


Are you an official in the Waukegan government or quasi-government agency such as the chamber of commerce, visitors bureau or economic development council? If so, visit our information page for government officials to see how CityTownInfo can support you.

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