Havana, Illinois

City: Havana

County: Mason

State: Illinois

Lat/Long: 40.3000, -90.0500

Located in central Illinois on the Illinois River, thirty-eight miles southwest of Peoria, Havana is the county seat of Mason County. White settlers began moving into the area that would become Havana in the 1820s. The U.S. Post Office Department established the first post office in April 1829. Ossian M. Ross laid out Havana in 1835. When the Illinois General Assembly established Mason County in 1841, voters selected Havana as the seat of government. In January 1843, the General Assembly authorized that an election be held to decide whether Havana or Bath would be the permanent county seat, and voters elected to move the seat of government to Bath. In February 1851, the General Assembly authorized another election to decide whether to move the county seat back to Havana. Mason County voters in the subsequent election voted overwhelmingly to return the seat of government to Havana.

Webster's New Geographical Dictionary (Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1988), 492; Edward Callary, Place Names of Illinois (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2009), 155; The History of Menard and Mason Counties, Illinois (Chicago: O. L. Baskin, 1879), 419, 424, 428; An Act for the Formation of the County of Mason; "An Act Permanently to Locate the County Seat of Mason County," 14 January 1843, Laws of Illinois (1843), 113-14; "An Act to Relocate the County Seat of Mason County," 8 February 1851, General Laws of Illinois (1851), 23-24.