Located 35 miles northwest of Chicago, The Village of Barrington serves as the geographic center of the 72 square mile Barrington Community Unit School District 220. There are large areas of wetlands, forest preserves, parks and horse trails in the country-suburban setting.
The Barrington area ZIP code, 60010, is the seventh wealthiest ZIP code with a population of 20,000 or more in the country. The area includes the towns of Barrington, South Barrington, North Barrington, Barrington Hills, Lake Barrington, Tower Lakes, Port Barrington, and small portions of Deer Park, Hoffman Estates, and Inverness.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 4.8 square miles (12.4 km²), of which, 4.6 square miles (11.9 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.4 km²) of it (3.56%) is water.
William Butler Ogden became interested in connecting the developing northwest to Chicago's growing port facilities. He gained control of the Chicago, St. Paul & Fond du Lac Railroad (later the Chicago & North Western Railway) in 1854 and pushed its tracks to the northwest corner of Cook County, where a station named Deer Grove was built.
Many area farmers feared the railroad would bring too many saloons and Irish Catholics to the area. In response to the opposition, Robert Campbell, a civil engineer working for the Fond du Lac line, purchased a farm two miles northwest of Deer Grove and platted a community there in 1854. At Campbell's request, the railroad moved the station building to his new community, which he called Barrington after Great Barrington, Massachusetts, the original home of a number of area farmers.
The prosperity of the Civil War era increased Barrington's population to 300 in 1863. In order to provide a tax mechanism to finance improvements, Barrington incorporated on February 16, 1865. Homer Willmarth became the first village president. The village prospered as many Chicago grain merchants whose homes were destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 decided to construct opulent Queen Anne–style residences along Barrington's tree-shaded streets.
Although the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway was built through Barrington in 1889, the village continued to serve agriculturally based trading interests into the twentieth century. Dairy farming was the major activity on the meadows and woodlots surrounding the community. Fueled by post–World War I prosperity, however, a number of Chicago business leaders built their residences on large woodland tracts around the village, bringing an end to dairying. Barrington, and its close villages are considered to be some of the wealthiest in the country. The village opposes the use of the Elgin, Joliet & Eastern Railway to prevent rail congestion in Chicago, prefering freight trains to be routed through more diverse communities.
The only Gatorade sports and science institute in the country is in Barrington.
Cuba Road, and in particular White Cemetery, is said to be one of the most haunted sites in Illinois.
There were 3,768 households out of which 39.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.0% were married couples living together, 8.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.7% were non-families. 22.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.70 and the average family size was 3.20.
In the village the population was spread out with 29.9% under the age of 18, 4.3% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, 25.1% from 45 to 64, and 12.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 90.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.7 males.
The median income for a household in the village was $83,085, and the median income for a family was $102,120. Males had a median income of $80,232 versus $38,795 for females. The per capita income for the village was $43,942. About 2.3% of families and 3.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.7% of those under age 18 and 3.8% of those age 65 or over.