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Kenilworth, Illinois

Kenilworth, Illinois
Location in Cook County and the state of Illinois.
Location in Cook County and the state of Illinois.
Location of Illinois in the United States
Location of Illinois in the United States
Country  United States
State Illinois
County Cook
Township New Trier
Incorporated 1889
 • Type Council-manager
 • President Bill Russell
 • Total 0.61 sq mi (1.6 km2)
 • Land 0.61 sq mi (1.6 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.0 km2)  0%
Population (2010)
 • Total 2,513
 • Density 4,119.7/sq mi (1,590.6/km2)
  Up 0.8% from 2000
Standard of living (2007-11)
 • Per capita income $104,301
 • Median home value $1,000,000+
ZIP code(s) 60043
Area code(s) 847 & 224
Geocode 39519
Website .org.villageofkenilworthwww
Demographics (2010)[1]
White Black Asian
97.4% 0.3% 1.3%
Islander Native Other Hispanic
(any race)
0.00% 0.1% 0.9% 1.6%

Kenilworth is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States, 15 miles (24 km) north of downtown Chicago. As of the 2010 census it had a population of 2,513.[1] It is the newest of the nine suburban North Shore communities bordering Lake Michigan, and is one of those developed as a planned community. Kenilworth has a reputation as being the wealthiest and the most exclusive community in the Midwest.[2] In January 2011, ranked Kenilworth as the second most affluent neighborhood in the United States, naming it "the most exclusive neighborhood in the Midwest, with estimated median household income of $247,000. Even after the housing slump the average house in Kenilworth sells for about $1 million."[3]


  • Demographics 1
  • Education 2
  • Public entities and points of interest 3
  • Kenilworth Assembly Hall 4
  • Geography 5
  • History 6
  • Notable people 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9


As of the census[4] of 2010, there were 2,513 people, 800 households and 699 families residing in the village. The population density was 4,188.3 people per square mile (1,570.6/km²). There were 855 housing units at an average density of 1,425.0 per square mile (534.4/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 97.4% White, 0.3% African American, 0.1% Native American, 1.3% Asian, and 0.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.6% of the population.[1]

There were 800 households, out of which 47.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 79.3% were headed by married couples living together, 5.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 12.6% were non-families. 11.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.7% were someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.14, and the average family size was 3.41.[1]

In the village, the population was spread out with 34.3% under the age of 18, 4.9% from 18 to 24, 14.6% from 25 to 44, 32.6% from 45 to 64, and 13.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42.4 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.2 males.[1]

For the period 2007-11, the estimated median annual income for a household in the village was $242,188, and the median income for a family was over $250,000. The per capita income for the village was $104,301. 1.2% of families and 1.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.8% of those under age 18 and 3.5% of those age 65 or over.[5]


Kenilworth has its own public school district, with its only school being Joseph Sears School, named after the founder of the village. The district is School District 38 in Cook County, and is the fifth most expensive K-8 district in the state of Illinois in per-student spending. The school, commonly known as Sears, runs from junior kindergarten through eighth grade, with about sixty students per grade. Sears has its own gymnasium, auditorium, library, and one high-tech computer lab, in addition to a blacktop and large fields behind the school. Annual events that go on at Sears include The Eighth Grade Play, the Spelling Bee, the Geography Bee, Scamper Night (concert put-on by the Girl Scouts), and Field Day (Tigers vs. Wildcats). Most students participate in one of the school's athletic teams, including boys and girls basketball, boys and girls volleyball, coed soccer, field hockey and coed track and field. Football and Lacrosse are also popular sports students will participate in that are run through the Kenilworth Park District.

There are no private schools in the small village of Kenilworth itself, but some K-8 students do attend nearby schools such as St. Faith, Hope and Charity, St. Joseph, St. Francis Xavier, Roycemore School, Baker Demonstration, and North Shore Country Day.

The vast majority of high school students in Kenilworth attend New Trier High School, the district high school just down the road, but others attend a variety of private schools including local and boarding schools. The most popular choices for students looking for alternatives include local private schools such as Loyola Academy, North Shore Country Day School, Regina Dominican, Roycemore School, and Lake Forest Academy.

Public entities and points of interest

Notable places and organizations in Kenilworth include:

  • Kenilworth Rebels – the Rebels are the football team of 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grade students.
  • Kenilworth Fountain – In the middle of Kenilworth Avenue just east of the railroad tracks
  • The Kenilworth Beach – The public beach on Lake Michigan, which is divided into a sailing beach and a bathing beach
  • Pee Wee Field – Also known as "Sears Stadium" - Baseball field located on the west side of town where many little leaguers play
  • Townley Field – District-owned sports field behind the school where many sports are played including field hockey, soccer, lacrosse,football, and the school Field Day
  • The Ware Garden – Public courtyard on the east side where many residents walk their dogs
  • Mahoney Park – A small park on the south side of town, named after the farm that was there at the town's founding
  • Kenilworth Train Station – Train station on the Metra Line in between Indian Hill and Wilmette stations
  • Joseph Sears School – Public elementary and junior high school on Abbotsford Road (JK-8)
  • The Kenilworth Club – A frequented community house that hosts all sorts of events throughout the year
  • Kenilworth Historical Society – Preserve and present the history of the town
  • Kenilworth Union Church – A non-denominational Protestant church on Kenilworth Avenue
  • Church of the Holy Comforter – Episcopal Church across the street from Kenilworth Union
  • Hiram Baldwin House – A Prairie School house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1905

Kenilworth does not have its own fire department or library; for these services, the town contracts with the neighboring Winnetka fire department and with the Wilmette library. Kenilworth has its own police department and 9-1-1 call center.

Kenilworth Assembly Hall

The entrance to the Kenilworth Club as originally built in 1907

Known as the Kenilworth Club, the Assembly Hall is a community building in the center of the village used for civic events for the town's gatherings, school-related events, and private organizations' meetings. This building is used for the annual Joseph Sears School benefits as well. The building was constructed by

In recent years, the Kenilworth Assembly Hall has become a home for concerts and benefits hosted by local bands from New Trier High School,Sears moms and other surrounding areas. The title "North Shore Scene" has been appropriately coined by many students and teenagers to describe their association with the concerts and the bands that participate. The North Shore Scene has helped launch the careers of well-known artists such as Fall Out Boy.


Kenilworth is located at (42.088128, -87.716009).[6]

According to the 2010 census, Kenilworth has a total area of 0.61 square miles (1.58 km2), all land.[7]

The highest point in the village is in the northwest corner, along Ridge Road. This point is about 643 feet (196 m) above sea level, or 68 feet (21 m) above the surface of Lake Michigan.


Joseph Sears[9] purchased 223.6 acres (0.905 km2) in one of the last undeveloped areas near Chicago's lakeshore for $150,300 in 1889. Joseph Sears' specifications for the community included large lots, high standards of construction, no alleys, and sales to Caucasians who weren't Jewish only.[10] Seven years later, the population had reached 300 residents, fulfilling the legal requirement for incorporation. The village population reached 2,501 in 1930 and has stayed nearly the same since then. In 1949, the US Supreme Court ruled that restrictive covenants such as the one enforced in Kenilworth were unenforceable by any court in the case Shelley v. Kraemer. In addition, the Civil Rights Act of 1968 totally outlawed such racially and religious covenants.

These changes did not come easily, however. The first African-American family to move to Kenilworth was met with resistance from some in the community, such as a cross burning and racially charged vandalism, while others voiced shock over the offenses.[11]

Notable people


  1. ^ a b c d e "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Kenilworth village, Illinois". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved March 13, 2013. 
  2. ^ Grossman, James R.; Ann Durkin Keating; Janice L. Reiff (2004). The  
  3. ^ Vardi, Nathan (January 18, 2011). "America's Most Affluent Neighborhoods". Forbes. Retrieved April 10, 2012. 
  4. ^ "American FactFinder".  
  5. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics: 2007–2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (DP03): Kenilworth village, Illinois". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Retrieved March 13, 2013. 
  6. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990".  
  7. ^ "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1".  
  8. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  9. ^ "Kenilworth Village History". Retrieved October 20, 2014. 
  10. ^ Kilner, Colleen (1990). Joseph Sears and his Kenilworth. Kenilworth Historical Society. p. 138, 143, her italics. 
  11. ^ "Residents voice shock over cross burning here". Wilmette News. May 26, 1966. 
  12. ^ "Will The Streak Get Cracked?". (Blog). April 29, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Newly disclosed account surfaces in 1966 Valerie Percy murder case". Chicago Tribune. June 14, 2011. 
  14. ^ "FEC Disclosure Image 28020220523".  
  15. ^ "George Washington Maher". Pleasant Home Foundation. Retrieved October 20, 2014. 
  16. ^ "From 'Bad Jim' in Las Vegas to 'geezer dad' in Kenilworth". Chicago Tribune. May 4, 2003. 
  17. ^ "Jude Reyes". Forbes. 
  18. ^ Carlyle, Erin (November 17, 2013). "Liesel Pritzker Simmons Sued Her Family And Got $500 Million, But She's No Trust Fund Baby". Forbes. 
  19. ^ Sweet, Lynn (July 23, 2010). "Mark Kirk and his near drowning story". Chicago Sun-Times. 
  20. ^ Zawislak, Mick (September 12, 2009). "Kenilworth businessman to enter 10th Dist. Congressional race".  
  21. ^ "Terence H. Winkless". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved October 20, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Oral history interview with Walker Evans, 1971 Oct. 13-Dec. 23". Archives of American Art. Smithsonian Institution. 1971. 

External links

  • Village of Kenilworth official website
  • Kenilworth Historical Society
  • Kenilworth Citizens Advisory Committee
  • The Kenilworth Club
  • Wilmette Public Library
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