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Marseilles, Illinois facts for kids

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For the city in France, see Marseille.
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Marseilles IL downtown1.jpg
Buildings in the city's business district
Name origin: Marseille, France
Country United States
State Illinois
County LaSalle
Townships Manlius, Rutland, Brookfield
Elevation 504 ft (154 m)
Coordinates 41°19′40″N 88°42′4″W / 41.32778°N 88.70111°W / 41.32778; -88.70111
Area 9.21 sq mi (24 km²)
 - land 8.72 sq mi (23 km²)
 - water 0.49 sq mi (1 km²)
Population 5,032 (2013)
Density 584 /sq mi (225 /km²)
Timezone CST (UTC-6)
 - summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
Postal code 61341
Area code 815

Marseilles is a city in LaSalle County, Illinois, United States. The population was 5,094 at the 2010 census, and was estimated to be 5,032 by July 2013. It is part of the Ottawa-Peru, IL Micropolitan Statistical Area.


"Industrial Marseilles" by Avery Johnson (1938)
1938 WPA mural, "Industrial Marseilles" by Avery Johnson. in Marseilles Post Office

Lovell Kimball arrived at the area along the Illinois River known as the Grand Rapids in 1833 from Watertown, New York. Kimball, aware that the Illinois-Michigan Canal Bill had passed and the canal would eventually reach the rapids, hired a surveyor to lay out a town. Kimball called the town Marseilles in reference to the French city of Marseilles as he hoped it would become a similar industrial center in Illinois. Marseilles was officially platted on June 3, 1835; the plat was revised twice for railroad and canal right-of-ways.

Nabisco Building

In 1921 the National Biscuit Company (Nabisco) built an eight-story corrugated cardboard box production plant in Marseilles, the largest industrial building in the state (outside of Chicago) at the time, and the first air-conditioned factory in the Midwest. Nabisco was a major employer in the area but ceased production at the plant in 2002.


Marseilles is located at 41°19′40″N 88°42′4″W / 41.32778°N 88.70111°W / 41.32778; -88.70111 (41.327795, -88.701121). The city is at the head of rapids along the Illinois River historically known as "the Grand Rapids" or the "Rapids of Maninumba".

According to the 2010 census, Marseilles has a total area of 9.206 square miles (23.84 km2), of which 8.72 square miles (22.58 km2) (or 94.72%) is land and 0.486 square miles (1.26 km2) (or 5.28%) is water.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1870 758
1880 1,882 148.3%
1890 2,210 17.4%
1900 2,559 15.8%
1910 3,291 28.6%
1920 3,391 3.0%
1930 4,292 26.6%
1940 4,455 3.8%
1950 4,514 1.3%
1960 4,347 −3.7%
1970 4,320 −0.6%
1980 4,766 10.3%
1990 4,811 0.9%
2000 4,655 −3.2%
2010 5,094 9.4%
Est. 2015 4,963 −2.6%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the 2010 Census there were 5,094 people, 2,045 households, and 1,327 families residing in the city. The population density was 584 people per square mile (225/km²). There were 2,422 housing units at an average density of 278 per square mile (107/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.2% White, 0.04% African American, 0.4% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 1.4% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.6% of the population.

There were 2,045 households out of which 30.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.8% were married couples living together, 11.3% had a female householder with no husband present. 29.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 26.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.45 and the average family size was 3.00.

The city's age distribution consisted of 23.9% under the age of 18, and 14.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38.5 years, and females made up 50.7% of the population.

During the period of 2009-2013 the median income for households was $37,558, per capita income was $20,931, and 12.8% of the population was below poverty level.

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