Most African American cities in Illinois research summary. We analyzed Illinois’s most recent Census data to determine the blackest cities in Illinois based on the percentage of Black residents. Here are the results of our analysis:
The city with the largest African American population in Illinois is East St. Louis based on the most recent Census data.
East St. Louis is 95.17% Black.
The least African American city in Illinois is Elburn.
Elburn is 0.0% Black.
Illinois is 13.8% Black.
Illinois is the 14th blackest state in the United States.
The Black community is one of the fastest-growing communities in America this decade.
Roughly 42 million people identifying as Black or African American live in the United States, making up 12% of the total population. According to the most recent American Community Survey, the Black population in Illinois is 1,773,138 – at 13.8% of the total population of Illinois.
The percentage growth of Blacks in America is the third largest percentage change for any race according to the Census’s race and ethnicity definition. Most scholars and historians agree that increasing diversity in America is a good thing.
But how has the increase in the black population impacted Illinois? Which cities and towns in Illinois have seen the greatest increase in its Black population?
We broke down the most recent census data to determine the cities in Illinois with the largest African American population in 2023:
What’s the blackest city in Illinois? The city with the largest Black population in Illinois for 2023 is East St. Louis. See if East St. Louis ranked as one of the most african american places in America.
The 10 Blackest Cities In Illinois For 2023
Methodology: How We Determined The Cities In Illinois With The Largest Black Population For 2023
We still believe in the accuracy of data — especially from the Census. So that’s where we went to get the race breakdown across Illinois.
That leads us to the Census’s most recently available data, the 2017-2021 American Community Survey data from the US Census.
Specifically, we looked at table B03002: Hispanic OR LATINO ORIGIN BY RACE. Here are the category names as defined by the Census:
- Hispanic or Latino
- White alone*
- Black or African American alone*
- American Indian and Alaska Native alone*
- Asian alone*
- Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone*
- Some other race alone*
- Two or more races*
Our particular column of interest was the number of people who identified as Black or African American.
We limited our analysis to non-CDPs with a population greater than 5,000 people in Illinois. That left us with 326 cities.
We then calculated the percentage of residents that are Black or African American. The percentages ranked from 95.2% to 0.0%.
Finally, we ranked each city based on the percentage of the Black population, with a higher score being more Black than a lower score. East St. Louis took the distinction of being the most Black, while Elburn was the least African American city.
We updated this article for 2023. This is our tenth time ranking the cities in Illinois with the largest African American population.
Read on for more information on how the cities in Illinois ranked by population of African American residents or, for a more general take on diversity in America, head over to our ranking of the most diverse cities in America.
Summary: Black Populations Across Illinois
If you’re looking for a breakdown of African American populations across Illinois according to the most recent data, this is an accurate list.
If you’re curious enough, here are the least African American places in Illinois:
- Lake Bluff
- Spring Grove
For more Illinois reading, check out:
African American Population By City In Illinois
|Rank||City||% African American|
|1||East St. Louis||95.17%|
|3||Country Club Hills||87.7%|