Census shows Orion gains population

Lisa Depies

Orion is one of only six Henry County communities to note an increase in population during the 2010 census.

Orion gained 148 residents, followed by Geneseo with an additional 106, Hooppole with 42, Annawan with 10, Bishop Hill with three and Woodhull with two.

The population of Orion increased from 1,713 to 1,861 over the last 10 years, an increase of 8.6 percent.

In comparison to its total population, Hooppole had the largest increase in population in the county. The village had 162 residents in 2000 and increased to 204 in 2010.

The government’s 2010 census figures show Geneseo having a population of 6,586, an increase over the 6,480 figure recorded during the 2000 census. Geneseo’s population numbers increased by 1.6 percent since the last census.

Galva lost 169 residents in the decade between census counts. Other communities with declining population numbers include Colona down 75, Cleveland down 65, Alpha down 55, Atkinson down 29, Kewanee down 28, Cambridge down 20 and Andover down 16.

In comparison to its total population, Cleveland had the largest decrease in population numbers in the county. The village had 253 residents in 2000 and only 188 in 2010, a change of 25.7 percent.

Henry County lost 1 percent of its population between the two most recent counts.

The current population of Henry County is 50,486, down from 51,020 in 2000.

In the decades between the 1950 census and the 1980 census Henry County steadly gained in population numbers.

The county hit a peak population of 57,968 in the 1980 census before declining in the decades after.

Geneseo’s population numbers have, for the most part, continued to incline since the 1950s’ census. During that counting, Geneseo had 4,325 residents.

Geneseo numbers dipped from 6,373 in 1980 to 5,990 in 1990, but rebounded to 6,480 in 2000 and continued to increase in the most recent census.

The state of Illinois also gained residents in the recent census counting. A total of 3.3 percent more people live in the state in 2010 than did a decade prior.

Illinois remains the fifth-largest state in the nation with a population of more than 12.8 million.

The top five counties in Illinois based on population are: Cook, DuPage, Lake, Will, and Kane.

The five largest cities are Chicago (2,695,598), Aurora (197,899), Rockford (152,871), Joliet (147,433), and Naperville (141,853), with Springfield (116,250), Peoria (115,007), Champaign (81,055), Bloomington (76,610) and Decatur (76,122) having the largest populations downstate.

The 2010 Census represented the most massive participation movement ever in the country with 74 percent of households voluntarily returning their census forms by mail.

Illinois had a 76 percent participation rate and Henry County had an 83 percent participation rate.