Located in Lake County, Illinois, Waukegan is the ninth biggest city in the state with a population of 88,826. The city is comprised of 19 constituent neighborhoods with a variety of different residents. Over half of the housing in the region is made up of single-family homes, and around a quarter of the housing is comprised of high-rise complexes.
The site of Waukegan was first recorded on a 1778 French map created by Thomas Hutchins, and the modern name was adopted in 1849. Waukegan possessed an abolitionist sentiment from the beginning. In 1891, the barbed-wire manufacturer, Washburn and Moen, established operations in the area and prompted a substantial growth with an influx of immigrants from a wide variety of locations including Lithuania, Armenia, Finland and Sweden. It also welcomed a number of African American migrants from the South. While many of the surrounding areas evolved into highly residential areas, Waukegan has maintained a unique industrial quality, and houses a number of recognized historical sites. While many residents work in this industry, others work predominantly in healthcare and education.
Today, there are a number of revitalization efforts that have been proposed to renovate the city and add a number of new residential neighborhoods and recreational facilities. The first wave of revitalization has already added the Genesee Theater along with a number of restaurants and boutiques. The city offers a number of annual community events including the ArtWauk, the Chicago Latino Film Festival, the Fiestas Piestras Parade and Festival and the HolidayWauk. The downtown area houses the Waukegan Public Library, the Lake County Courthouse and the College of Lake County along with a number of bars, restaurants and shops. The Lake County Sports Center offers a number of activities and events for local residents. Children in the area attend the Waukegan Public School District 60. This evolving historical city offers an engaging, vibrant culture.