Elmwood Park was incorporated as a village in early April 1914 in order to prevent being annexed by the greater city of Chicago. Today one can still see evidence of a minority of landowners, or share farmers who voted for annexation to the City by the odd chunk taken out of Elmwood Park’s northeast corner which kept the community from achieving a full square rectangle border.
At the turn of the Century urban dwellers would take the train Westward out of the cement city for family picnics at the “Elm-Wood-Park” which was an ancient “Grove of majestic 180 year old Elms” found near 72nd Av/Harlem & Irving Park road. Taking advantage of the parks provenance, a new cemetery was named Elmwood, while the closest train stop to both Cemetery & Park in unincorporated Marwood/Ellsworth became identified with the official name of “Elmwood Park”. During the pressure era of incorporation a decade later, our Village’s founding representatives thought it most ideal to legally title the community after the stop, and after the namesake Elm which is a native locally evolved riparian Prairie “Bottomland” tree species.
As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 25,405 people, 9,858 households, and 6,525 families residing in the village. The population density was 13,328.4 people per square mile (5,135.6/km²). There were 10,150 housing units at an average density of 5,325.1 per square mile (2,051.8/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 91.54% White, 0.52% African American, 0.18% Native American, 2.09% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 3.31% from other races, and 2.34% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 11.01% of the population.
There were 9,858 households out of which 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.6% were married couples living together, 12.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.8% were non-families. 29.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.20.
In the village, the population was spread out with 21.9% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 30.4% from 25 to 44, 22.8% from 45 to 64, and 16.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 90.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.5 males.
The median income for a household in the village was $47,315, and the median income for a family was $58,358. Males had a median income of $40,634 versus $28,667 for females. The per capita income for the village was $22,526. About 3.6% of families and 5.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.3% of those under age 18 and 6.5% of those age 65 or over.
Elmwood Park’s public schools are operated under Illinois Community Unit School District #401. The schools include:
- John Mills Elementary School
- Elmwood Elementary School
- Early Childhood Center
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