Palatine, IL

This Afternoon

Palatine is a village located in Cook County, Illinois. It is a northwestern residential suburb of Chicago. As of the 2000 census, the village had a total population of 65,479.


The first European-American to settle in Palatine is generally thought to be George Ela, who built a log cabin in the area now called Deer Grove. Ela was one of the first of a wave of pioneers to migrate to northern Illinois following the Black Hawk War. Ela is also the name of a main road just west of the town of Palatine.

The Village of Palatine was founded in 1855. It was built around a station on the new Chicago and North Western Railway. Joel Wood surveyed and laid out the village, earning him the title of Palatine's founder. In 1866, Palatine was finally incorporated as a village.

Palatine's first suburb-style subdivision was called Palanois Park, built shortly after World War II. The town has experienced truly explosive growth since the 1970s, when it was reached by Chicago's ever-growing suburban sprawl. Palatine was home to the Cook County Fair when it existed up until the Mid- 20th Century. The fairgrounds are now a sub-division with a name that pays tribute to Palatine's former fairgrounds.

Palatine is notorious as the location of the Brown's Chicken Massacre in 1993. Seven employees of a local Brown's Chicken & Pasta were shot and their bodies put into the restaurant's freezer, preventing police from establishing a time of death. The unsolved murders scarred Palatine and nearly ruined the Brown's Chicken company. The case was not solved at least until 2002, when DNA evidence finally pointed to Juan Luna and Jim Degorski; one was a former employee, and both were former students at William Fremd High School. These suspects are presently awaiting trial.


Palatine operates under the Council-manager form of local government. Six councilmen are elected from their respective districts, while the entire village elects the Village Clerk and the Mayor. The council then hires a Village Manager to oversee the town's day-to-day operation. The current mayor is Republican Rita Mullins.

Palatine is represented in the Illinois House of Representatives by Suzie Bassi (District 54), the Illinois Senate by Wendell Jones (District 27), and the United States House of Representatives by Melissa Bean (District 8).


Palatine is part of Illinois' elementary school District 15 and high school district 211. The village is home to two high schools, Palatine High School and William Fremd High School; and a community college, William Rainey Harper College. Both high schools and the college, as well as the public library, have received high national honors.


Palatine is located at 42°7'1" North, 88°2'26" West (42.116885, -88.040613).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 34.0 km2 (13.1 mi2). 33.6 km2 (13.0 mi2) of it is land and 0.3 km2 (0.1 mi2) of it is water. The total area is 0.99% water.


As of the census of 2000, there were 65,479 people, 25,518 households, and 16,586 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,949.2/km2 (5,047.2/mi2). There were 26,223 housing units at an average density of 780.6/km2 (2,021.3/mi2). The racial makeup of the village was 83.05% White, 2.15% African American, 0.22% Native American, 7.56% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 5.08% from other races, and 1.89% from two or more races. 14.12% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 25,518 households out of which 32.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.3% were married couples living together, 8.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.0% were non-families. 27.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.18.

In the village the population was spread out with 24.8% under the age of 18, 8.5% from 18 to 24, 35.8% from 25 to 44, 22.0% from 45 to 64, and 8.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 99.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.3 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $63,321, and the median income for a family was $76,270. Males had a median income of $50,341 versus $35,342 for females. The per capita income for the village was $30,661. 4.8% of the population and 3.5% of families were below the poverty line. 5.2% of those under the age of 18 and 5.1% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.

People and culture

Palatine has one of the most diverse populations in Chicagoland in regards to ethnicity and income. Over one hundred languages are spoken in Palatine. The village is home to a Sikh temple on its northwest side that is visited by Sikhs from across the country. The large homes on the southwest side are a stark contrast to the low-income housing on the northeast side.

Sister cities

Palatine has a sister city, Fontenay-le-Comte, located in the Vendée département of western France.

Famous Palatinians

Stuart Paddock, late publisher and founder of the Daily Herald, started the paper in Palatine, although the paper is now headquartered in adjacent Arlington Heights.

Radio personality Larry Lujack lived in Palatine during his WLS days.

Journalist Carol Marin of NBC 5 Chicago attended Palatine High School while CBS 2 Chicago's Dana Kozlov attended Fremd. Steve Draganchuk of St. Louis' WB 11 also attended Fremd.

Science fiction writer Frederick Pohl resides in Palatine.

Products from Palatine

Weber-Stephen Products, manufacturers of the Weber grill, is located in Palatine.

Square D, one of the largest makers of circuit breakers, is headquartered in Palatine.