Marseilles, Illinois

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Marseilles is a city in LaSalle County, Illinois, United States. The population was 4,655 at the 2000 census. It is part of the OttawaStreator Micropolitan Statistical Area.



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, under the impression that Marseilles, France was an industrial center the likes of which he hoped to attain in Illinois. Marseilles was officially platted on June 3, 1835; the plat was revised twice for railroad and canal right-of-ways.[1]


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).[2] The city is at the head of rapids along the Illinois River historically known as "the Grand Rapids" or the "Rapids of Maninumba".[1]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.7 square miles (22.5 km²), of which, 8.3 square miles (21.5 km²) of it is land and 0.4 square miles (1.0 km²) of it (4.48%) is water.


As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 4,655 people, 1,867 households, and 1,258 families residing in the city. Currently the population is 4,800. The population density was 560.1 people per square mile (216.3/km²). There were 2,003 housing units at an average density of 241.0/sq mi (93.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.94% White, 0.09% African American, 0.21% Native American, 0.26% Asian, 0.64% from other races, and 0.86% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.91% of the population.

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