Peoria (Peoria County, Illinois)
Peoria, Illinois, a city (1959 pop. 111,856; with suburbs 250,512; 2000 pop. 112,936) named after one of the Mini Indian tribes, is located in Peoria County on the western shore of Peoria Lake, an expansion of the Illinois River. It is situated a little north of the center of the state in the heart of an extensive and diversified agricultural area. Part of the city is located on high bluffs along the lake, making beautiful homesites.
The first Mennonites in the area were Amish who settled east of the Illinois River, in Tazewell and Woodford counties, beginning about 1830, coming from Alsace, via Pennsylvania and New Orleans. About 1833 some Mennonites from the East settled in the same areas. The first Mennonite congregation in the city, known as the Mennonite Gospel Mission, was begun on 19 July 1914, by the Central Conference of Mennonites. The second was begun by the Mennonites (Mennonite Church) on the South Side, on 16 February 1919, and continues as the Ann Street Mennonite Church. Very few Mennonites have settled in the city itself. The present members of these two congregations are largely from non-Mennonite backgrounds. Approximately 200 persons with Mennonite affiliation in all branches lived in the city in 1959, with approximately 3,000 persons living within a radius of 25 miles east of the river and city. In 1935 a mission was begun in East Peoria, known as Highway Village, sponsored by the Mennonite Church (MC). The Mennonites in the Peoria area came largely from the Mennonite Church, General Conference Mennonites, and the Evangelical Mennonites.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, pp. 145-146. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.
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MLA style: Hostetler, J. J. "Peoria (Peoria County, Illinois)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1959. Web. 19 June 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/P4717.html.
APA style: Hostetler, J. J. (1959). Peoria (Peoria County, Illinois). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 June 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/P4717.html.