A Gazetteer of Illinois, In Three Parts.
By: J. M. Peck, A. M.
Published by: Grigg & Elliot, Philadelphia 1837

Counties of: Lawrence, Livingston, Macon, Macoupin, Madison and Marion


Lawrence County was formed in 1821, from a part of Edwards and Crawford, and is situated on the eastern side of the state, opposite Vincennes.

It is bounded north by Crawford, and a corner of Jasper; east by the Wabash river; south by Wabash and Edwards counties; and west by Clay.

It is twenty miles across, north and south, and a medium length of twenty-eight miles- containing about 560 square miles.

It is watered by the Embarras river, and Racoon creek, which pass through it, and Fox river on its western border. The banks of these streams are low and subject to inundation.

In the low prairies, near the Wabash, are swamps and sloughs, known by the name of "purgatory," which, in a wet season, are miry, and extremely unpleasant to the traveler. Over some of these, bridges and levees are now constructed. In a dry season, the water evaporates, and the ground becomes firm.

Lawrence county contains about an equal proportion of timber arid prairie, some of which is inferior land, and other portions of an excellent quality.

Its exports are corn, beef, pork, cattle, etc., much of which is sent down the Big Wabash in flat boats to New Orleans.

This county belongs to the fourth judicial circuit, and sends two members to the house of representatives, and, with Craeford and Jasper one to the senate.

The county seat is Lawrenceville.


Livingston County was formed from La Salle, McLean, and an attached portion of Vermilion county, in February, 1837. It is 36 miles long, and about 30 miles wide; containing about 1040 square miles.

It is bounded north by La Salle, east by a strip of country attached to Vermilion, south by the same tract, and McLean, and west by McLean and La Salle counties.

It contains some rich tracts of timbered land, and a large quantity of fine rich undulating prairie. It is watered by the Mackinau and its branches, and by the Muddy Fork, Otter Fork, and other small streams.

Limestone and coal are its principal minerals. Livingston county belongs to the first judicial circuit, while one portion is represented in the legislature by the representation of La Salle, and the other by that of McLean.

Its seat of justice is not yet established.


Macon County was formed from the attached part of Shelby, in 1829, and is bounded north by McLean; east by Champaign and Coles; south by Shelby; and west by Sangarnon.

It is thirty-nine miles long, and thirty-six broad-- containing 1,404 square miles.

The southeastern portion is watered by the Kaskaskia and its tributaries; the middle and northern portions by the North Fork of the Sangamon; and the northwestern part by Salt creek.

There is much first rate land in Macon county. Some of the prairies are large, and, in the interior, level and wet; but generally dry, rich, aud undulating near the timber.

Macon county is attached to the first judicial circuit and sends one representative, and with McLean county, one senator. The population is estimated at 3,600.

The county seat is Decatur.


Macoupin County was organised from the attached portion of Greene county, in 1829. It is bounded north by Sangamon and Morgan; east by Montgomery; south by Madison; and west by Greene. It is thirty-six miles long, from north to south; and twenty-four miles broad, containing 864 square miles.

The Macoupin creek and its branches water the middle and western parts, the Cahokia creek the southeastern, and the heads of Wood river and Piasau, the south-western parts of the county.

Some of the prairies on the eastern side are large, level, and wet; but a large portion of the county is excellent soil, and well proportioned into timber and prairie, and rapidly settling. About one-third of the county is timbered land. It is an excellent agricultural county, and will soon produce large quantities of pork, beef, wheat; etc., which will naturally reach the market at Alton.

Macoupin county sends one member to the house of representatives, and one to the senate. The county seat is Carlinville.


Madison county was organised from St. Clair county, in 1812, and then embraced a large portion of the state. It is now bounded north by Greene, Macoupin, and a corner of Montgomery counties; east, by Bond, and a corner of Clinton; south by St. Clair; and west by the Mississippi.

It is 24 miles from north to south; and from 28 to 36 miles from east to west-- and contains about 750 square miles.

It is watered by Silver and Cahokia creeks, and Wood river, and their branches.

A portion of this county lies in the American bottom, but much of it is high, undulating, and proportionably divided into timber and prairie.

Settlements were formed in this county about thirty-five years since. Coal, and building stone, are abundant. Around Alton, and along Wood river, and Cahokia creek, is one of the finest bodies of timber in this part of the state.

The prairies are very advantageously situated for settlements, and will soon be covered with well cultivated farms. Wheat, corn, beef, pork, horses, cattle, and almost every production of Illinois, are raised in this county, and. find a ready market.

Madison county belongs to the second judicial circuit, and sends one senator arid two representatives to the legislature, and unites with St. Clair and Monroe in another senator.

The seat of justice is Edwardsville.


Marion County lies in the interior of the state, and is bounded north by Fayette; east by Clay, and a corner of Wayne; south by Jefferson; and West by Clinton, and a corner of Fayette.

It was formed from Jefferson and Fayette counties, in 1823, is twenty-four miles in extent, and contains 576 square miles.

Marion county embraces the southern part of the Grand prairie, and is watered by Crooked cregk, and the East Fork of the Kaskaskia, on its western, and Skillet Fork on its eastern side.

It has considerable land of second quality; about one third timber, and the rest prairie. Considerable post oak timber is found in this county.

Marion county is attached to the third judicial circuit, sends one member to the, house of representatives, and, with Clinton, one member to the senate.

The county seat is Salem.

Population, 3,000.

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