Jefferson county was formed in 1819 as one of the original 15 counties and is named for Thomas Jefferson, third President of the U.S. It is located in southern Illinois in the heart of "Little Egypt".
One notable landmark in the county is the C. H. Judd House, built in 1881 in rural Belle Rive. It is a three-story brick structure with lined basement. Most other farm houses of its day were wood-frame structures and most succumbed to the tornado of 1888.
Cedarhurst, in the county seat of Mt. Vernon, is the leading cultural institution in southern Illinois offering a Sculpture Park, Performing Arts Center and several nature trails.
The county population on July 1, 1999, was 39,188, an increase of 2,168 over the 1990 census.
For information on county government, contact the National Association of Counties Web site.
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