Hinckley, Gordon Bitner, 1910-2008, leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons; see Latter-day Saints, Church of Jesus Christ of), b. Salt Lake City, grad. Univ. of Utah. He began his lifetime in church service as a missionary (1933-35) in England. He later directed the church's public communications and missionary program, and in 1961 entered the upper ranks of the Mormon leadership. After serving (1981-95) as counselor to three successive church presidents, he was the church's president and prophet from 1995 until his death. Hinckley, who traveled widely, contributed significantly to the church's growth abroad. He stressed the importance of marriage and the family, and initiated a fund for the college education of needy Mormons. In Salt Lake City, he promoted the renovation of the Mormon Tabernacle and the building of a massive new assembly hall. His books include Standing for Something (2000) and Way to Be! (2002).
Hinckley is a village in Squaw Grove Township, DeKalb County, Illinois, United States. The population was 1,994 at the 2000 census.


The Village of Hinckley has a rich and proud history. In the 1830's, a Mr. Hollenbeck (who lived near Ottawa) was traveling the then-unsettled territory. He found a fine grove of trees west of the present-day Hinckley, and named the grove after the squaws who were tending camp.

Back in Ottawa, word spread of the undeveloped land, and in the spring of 1835, John Sebree built a log house. The next year saw more families come to the area, and soon a small town was started at the west edge of what is now Hinckley. The town's name was Squaw Grove.

Hinckley was conceived in the 1870's as the brainchild of Francis Hinckley, president of the Chicago and Iowa Railroad. The rail line was placed one-half mile east of the Village of Squaw Grove, which was then named Hinckley.

From this early birth, much change and innovation would come to Hinckley. Some key dates follow: Methodist Church (1835), first store (1872), Hinckley has 20 businesses (1876), St. Paul's Church (1885), volunteer fire brigade organized (1886), tornado destroys most of village (1889).

Local attractions

West of Hinckley on US HWY 30 is the privately owned Hinckley Airport which is home to Chicagoland Skydiving Center as well as Windy City Soaring.


Hinckley-Big Rock Community Unit School District #429 operates 3 schools.

Hinckley-Big Rock Elementary School is located on the westside of Hinckley on US HWY 30.

Hinckley-Big Rock Middle School is located in the center of Big Rock on US HWY 30.

Hinckley-Big Rock High School is located on the eastside of Hinckley on US HWY 30.


Hinckley is located at (41.771389, -88.640526).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 1.0 square miles (2.5 km²), of which, 0.9 square miles (2.5 km²) of it is land and 1.04% is water.


As of the census of 2000, there were 1,994 people, 730 households, and 556 families residing in the village. The population density was 2,100.7 people per square mile (810.4/km²). There were 761 housing units at an average density of 801.7/sq mi (309.3/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 97.69% White, 0.30% African American, 0.20% Native American, 0.10% Asian, 0.60% from other races, and 1.10% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.51% of the population.

There were 730 households out of which 38.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.8% were married couples living together, 7.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.8% were non-nuclear families. 18.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.73 and the average family size was 3.14.

In the village the population was spread out with 28.9% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 33.5% from 25 to 44, 21.2% from 45 to 64, and 9.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 99.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.2 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $58,043, and the median income for a family was $65,726. Males had a median income of $45,179 versus $27,500 for females. The per capita income for the village was $23,491. About 3.8% of families and 4.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.0% of those under age 18 and 5.1% of those age 65 or over.

Historical highlights

Hinckley was home to the first Harlem Globetrotters game on January 7, 1927.

In 1981, Hinckley served as stand-in for fictional North Crawford in Jonathan Demme's film adaptation of "Who Am I This Time?" by Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.. Christopher Walken and Susan Sarandon portray two painfully shy people who find one another through a community theater production of "A Streetcar Named Desire", in which they portray the tempestuous Stanley and Stella Kowalski.

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