Wilmette is a village in New Trier Township, Cook County, Illinois, United States. Bordering Lake Michigan, it is located 14 miles (23 km) north of Chicago's downtown district (4 mi or 6 km from Chicago's northern border) and had a population at the 2010 census of 27,087. In 2007, Wilmette was ranked as the seventh best place to raise children in the U.S., according to Business Week. In 2015, Wilmette was ranked the best place to live in the state of Illinois based on a variety of factors including its low unemployment rate, median income, low housing vacancy rate, high education expenditures per student, low crime, and short commute times. Wilmette is home to 2 of Illinois' 17 elementary schools (Romona Elementary, St. Joseph School) to be awarded the 2017 National Blue Ribbon award.
The present Village of Wilmette is distinct among North Shore communities because it was created by the 1924 merger of two older villages, Wilmette and Gross Point. The origins and development of these two communities differed, and this difference is still visible on the landscape. On the east, Wilmette developed on a wooded tract bordering Lake Michigan. On the west, Gross Point was the center of a German immigrant, farming community that spread across the open fields west of what is now Ridge Road.
Native Americans were the first people to inhabit this region. European contact began with the arrival of French explorers three centuries ago. At that time, Potawatomi people were living in this area.
About the Neighborhood
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