Location of Christopher in Franklin County, Illinois.
Location of Christopher in Franklin County, Illinois.
Christopher (the United States)
|Coordinates: 37°58′20″N 89°3′10″W|
|• Mayor||Gary Bartolotti|
|• Total||1.59 sq mi (4.11 km2)|
|• Land||1.58 sq mi (4.10 km2)|
|• Water||0.01 sq mi (0.02 km2)|
|• Density||1,742.10/sq mi (672.53/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (CST)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-5 (CDT)|
|Wikimedia Commons||Christopher, Illinois|
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,836 people, 1,297 households, and 814 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,011.0 people per square mile (776.6/km²). There were 1,436 housing units at an average density of 1,018.3/sq mi (393.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 98.62% White, 0.11% African American, 0.04% Native American, 0.28% Asian, 0.11% from other races, and 0.85% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.53% of the population.
There were 1,297 households out of which 25.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.6% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.2% were non-families. 34.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 19.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.19 and the average family size was 2.79.
In the city the population was spread out with 21.8% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 24.2% from 25 to 44, 24.3% from 45 to 64, and 21.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females, there were 86.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.3 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $25,045, and the median income for a family was $34,342. Males had a median income of $30,222 versus $18,458 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,141. About 14.3% of families and 19.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 34.4% of those under age 18 and 9.5% of those age 65 or over.
In 1906, the United Coal Mining Company No. 1 mine opened near Christopher. An explosion at the mine killed eight men on July 27, 1915. The mine was sold to the Old Ben Coal Corporation, and renamed Old Ben Coal Mine No. 1 in 1916. The mine closed in 1929.
Mob vigilantism during World War I
- Theodore Kunger, a grocer, had been judged by a local court of being disloyal, and ordered to pay a $100 fine. Having no money, he was put in jail. Later his cell was broken into by a vigilance committee. Kunger was carried by the mob to the city square where he was made to kiss the U.S. flag before he was tarred and feathered. He was then returned to jail.
- W. R. Jones, Kunger's attorney, was abducted five miles outside Christopher on his way home to Benton, Illinois. He was brought to the square and compelled to kiss the flag and praise president Woodrow Wilson, but was spared tar and feathers. He was told to leave town.
- Henry Timbrock and Henry Wheeler were also suspected of pro-German sympathies. They too were taken to the square, made to kiss the flag and tarred and feathered.
- The Polish pastor of the local Catholic church, Rev. John Kovalsky, had been accused of making disloyal remarks. He was taken to the square where he was stripped to the waist and coated with tar and feathers.
- Doug Collins, former NBA player and coach.
- Al Glossop, second baseman for the New York Giants, Boston Bees, Philadelphia Phillies, Brooklyn Dodgers and Chicago Cubs.
- Louie E. Lewis, Illinois State Treasurer and Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives, was born in Christopher.
- John Malkovich, actor, born in Christopher.
- Gene Rayburn (1917–99), radio and television personality, known for hosting the Match Game, was born in Christopher.
- "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved Jun 29, 2017.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved December 15, 2019.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "Places: Illinois". 2010 Census Gazetteer Files. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-05-03.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Hinton, Wayne. "Explosion at United Coal Company Mine No. 1". History of Illinois Coal Mine Disasters 1911 to 1920. Retrieved 2018-06-23.
- Hinton, Wayne (2018). "Old Ben Coal Mine No. 12". Coal Mines of Franklin County, Illinois. Retrieved 2018-06-23.
- United States Mine Rescue Association. "Old Ben No. 11 Mine Explosion". Mine Disasters in the United States. Retrieved 2018-06-23.
- Jones, John E. "Explosion in Old Ben Coal Corporation's Mine No. 11". History of Illinois Coal Mine Disasters 1911 to 1920. Retrieved 2018-06-23.
- Raye, Janet (December 8, 2017). "Hellraisers Journal: Not One Miner Brought Out Alive after Explosion at Old Ben Mine, Christopher, Illinois". We Never Forget. Retrieved 2018-06-23.
- "Four Disloyalists are Tarred and Feathered," Lebanon Daily Reporter, Mar. 23, 1918.
- "Use Tar in Illinois, Too," Kansas City Times, Mar. 23, 1918.
- "Tar and Feathers for Four Men," Logansport Pharos Reporter, Mar. 23, 1918.