Alsip was settled in the 1830s by German and Dutch farmers. The village is named after Frank Alsip, the owner of a brickyard that opened there in 1885. The village began to grow after the Tri-State Tollway was built there after World War II.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 6.5 square miles (16.9 km²), of which, 6.4 square miles (16.5 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.4 km²) of it (2.45%) is water.
Alsip is bordered to the west by Worth, Illinois. To the south is Crestwood. Oak Lawn lies to the north. Merrionette Park, Blue Island, and Robbins lie to the east (north-south, respectively). The Mount Greenwood neighborhood of Chicago lies to the north and east.
Most of the town lies to the north of the Cal-Sag Channel. In conjunction with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Water Reclamation District of Chicago, the Village operates a boat launch on the canal, permitting inland access to Lake Michigan
Alsip is also home to two cemeteries, Burr Oak and Restvale, both of which are predominantly African-American. While there are many famous people buried there, Restvale is particularly known as the final resting place of several notable Blues Musicians, perhaps the most notable being Muddy Waters. Burr Oak's most notable burial may be Emmett Till, whose murder in Mississippi at age 14 in 1955 was an important moment in the American Civil Rights Movement. In 2004, the cemetery was covered in the national media when the murder investigation was reopened, and Till's body was exhumed
Alsip residents are referred to as Alsipians.
As of the census of 2000, there were 19,725 people, 7,536 households, and 5,011 families residing in the village. The population density was 3,098.5 people per square mile (1,195.6/km²). There were 7,756 housing units at an average density of 1,218.3/sq mi (470.1/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 82.03% White, 10.09% African American, 0.15% Native American, 2.10% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 3.22% from other races, and 2.76% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.76% of the population, including 7.1% of Mexican descent.
There were 7,536 households out of which 34.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.0% were married couples living together, 13.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.5% were non-families. 28.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.26.
In the village the population was spread out with 26.4% under the age of 18, 9.0% from 18 to 24, 32.5% from 25 to 44, 20.9% from 45 to 64, and 11.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 93.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.5 males.
The median income for a household in the village was $47,963, and the median income for a family was $54,846. Males had a median income of $42,233 versus $31,395 for females. The per capita income for the village was $20,498. About 5.2% of families and 6.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.2% of those under age 18 and 9.1% of those age 65 or over.
The Village government consists of a mayor, a clerk, and six trustees. All of these positions are four year terms, with the mayor, clerk, and three of the trustees being elected in the same year, and the remaining three trustees elected in midterm elections. The current mayor was elected in 2005, with midterm elections held in 2007. All of these positions are voted on at-large.
The current Village government, as of late, 2007 (with the year their term ends):
Each trustee and the mayor serve on one or more committees or commissions which oversee government functions. The individual assignments are available at the Village website.
There are also a Finance Director who helps guide the government on fiduciary matters and a law firm that serves as the Village Attorneys to guide the government on legal matters.
Elementary School Districts
Secondary School District
One of the two Chicago area Coca-Cola bottling plants is located in Alsip.