Home » Illinois » Eldorado

James W. Loewen (1942-2021)

We mourn the loss of our friend and colleague and remain committed to the work he began.

Eldorado

Illinois

Basic Information

Type of Place
Independent City or Town
Metro Area
Politics c. 1860?
Unions, Organized Labor?

Sundown Town Status

Confirmed Sundown Town?
Surely
Was there an ordinance?
Don't Know
Sign?
Yes, Strong Oral Tradition
Year of Greatest Interest
Still Sundown?
Probably Not, Although Still Very Few Black People

Census Information

The available census data from 1860 to the present
Total White Black Asian Native Hispanic Other BHshld
1860
1870
1880
1890
1900
1910
1920
1930
1940
1950
1960
1970
1980
1990 4536
2000 4534 4455 16
2010 4122 33 1
2020

Method of Exclusion

  • Threat of Violence
  • Violence Towards Newcomers
  • Other

Main Ethnic Group(s)

Group(s) Excluded

  • Black

Comments

“In Saline County three Negro homes were dynamited.” (Reference: Daily Register (Harrisburg), April 5, 1923, p.1.)

“Another attack was made last night on the home of the Rev. Peter Green, pastor of the African Methodist Church at Eldorado. The crowd told Mr. Green to leave town in 24 hours, under penalty of death. He defied the mob and stood at his gate with a shotgun, threatening to shoot the first man who molested him.” (“Race War in IL,” NY Times, 6/17/1902.)

In 1992, police told my black guests they’d best leave town. We were having a party indoors, no noise issue; neighbors had phoned the police. (Local resident)

Many residents, both former and current, have claimed there was a sundown sign but they debate on when it was up. Most likey it was gone sometime in the 1960s.