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Alexander County is the southernmost county of the state of Illinois. Based on the 2010 census, the
population was 8,238. Alexander County was
created on March 4, 1819. The county
is Cairo. This county is named for William M.
Alexander, a settler and state representative in the Illinois General
Alexander County is part of the Cape Girardeau, MO-IL Metropolitan Statistical Area.
The county is named for William M. Alexander, early settler of the district and state representative in the second and third General Assemblies.
County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts
First county organized in Illinois. March 14, 1819. Separated from Union County in 1819. Sometimes referred to as
the foot hills of the Ozarks. Named for Dr. William M. Alexander, State Representative
The first settlement goes back to 1805. Alexander County forms the southern extremity of the state and is bounded by the Mississippi River on the west and south, by the Ohio and Cache Rivers on the east and by Union County on the north. There were very few people in the territory in 1819 at the time of the formation of the county. In 1820, considerably more than one year after its organization, there were, according to the United States census, but 625 souls and it must be borne in mind that in that enumeration was included nearly all of what is now Pulaski County. The only towns of importance at that time were America and Caledonia, both now in Pulaski County.
As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 253 square miles (654 km2), of which 236 square miles (612 km2) is land and 16 square miles (42 km2) (6.40%) is water.
Alexander county is located in south Illinois. Parts of Cypress
Creek National Wildlife Refuge, Shawnee National Forest, and Horseshoe
Lake State Fish & Wildlife Area are in this
county. The county borders are partly defined by the
Mississippi River and the Ohio River.
Bordering counties are as follows: