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Beloit, Wisconsin
Beloit is a city in Rock County, Wisconsin, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 36,966. Twelve men in Colebrook, New Hampshire

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This article is about the city. For the adjacent town, see Beloit (town), Wisconsin. It has been suggested that Beloit Transit System be merged into this article. (Discuss) Proposed since September 2017. Place in Wisconsin, United States City of Beloit, Wisconsin Downtown Beloit
Flag Nickname(s): Gateway To Wisconsin
Location of Beloit in Rock County, Wisconsin Coordinates: 42°30′30″N 89°01′54″W / 42.50833°N 89.03167°W / 42.50833; -89.03167Country  United StatesState  WisconsinCounty RockFounded 1836Incorporated February 24, 1846 (village)
March 31, 1856 (city)Area[1] • Total 17.70 sq mi (45.84 km2) • Land 17.37 sq mi (44.99 km2) • Water 0.33 sq mi (0.85 km2)Elevation 751 ft (228.9 m)Population (2010)[2] • Total 36,966 • Estimate (2016)[3] 36,757 • Density 2,127.8/sq mi (821.5/km2)Time zone UTC-6 (CST) • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)FIPS code 55-06500Website

Beloit is a city in Rock County, Wisconsin, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 36,966.[4][5]

  • 1 History
    • 1.1 Historic buildings
    • 1.2 Downtown Beloit and the riverfront
    • 1.3 Railroad heritage
  • 2 Geography
  • 3 Demographics
    • 3.1 2010 census
  • 4 Government
  • 5 Economy
  • 6 Education
  • 7 Culture
    • 7.1 Festivals
  • 8 Recreation
  • 9 Recognition
  • 10 Notable people
  • 11 Images
  • 12 References
  • 13 External links

Twelve men in Colebrook, New Hampshire created the "New England Emigrating Company" in October 1836 and sent Dr. Horace White to find a suitable region of Wisconsin in which to settle. The level fields and the water power of Turtle Creek and the "unlimited gravel" in the area around what is now Beloit fixed the site of the intended village and farms. White purchased the land. At the same time as the Colebrook settlers, six families from Bedford, New Hampshire arrived and settled in the region. They said that the Rock River Valley had a "New England look", which made them feel at home. The village was platted in 1838 and was planned with wide streets which built on the New England model.

Beloit was originally named New Albany (after Albany, Vermont) in 1837 by its founder, Caleb Blodgett. The name was changed to Beloit in 1838.[6][7] The name Beloit was coined to be reminiscent of Detroit.[6]

Beloit lays claim to such inventions as the speedometer,[8] Korn Kurls,[9] and John Francis Appleby's twine binder.[10] Korn Kurls, which resemble Cheetos, was the original puffed cheese snack.[11][12]

Historic buildings

Beloit's 1889 Water Tower Place began demolition in 1935, which was halted because of the cost. A historic pump station is located nearby.

The Fairbanks Flats were built in 1917 to house the rush of African Americans moving to the area from the Southern United States.

Pearsons Hall of Science was designed by the architectural firm Burnham and Root for Beloit College to use as a science center.

The Lathrop-Munn Cobblestone House was originally built for politician John Hackett.

Downtown Beloit and the riverfront

Downtown Beloit is the historic economic, cultural and social center of the community. Located north of the confluence of the Rock River and Turtle Creek, the downtown is anchored by a core of historic buildings and the Ironworks office and industrial campus. Beloit's riverfront park system, mainly Riverside Park, extends north of the downtown along the east bank toward the Town of Beloit.

Downtown Beloit is one of two inaugural members of the Wisconsin Main Street designation.[13]

Railroad heritage

Beloit was served by the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Pacific Railroad, better known as the Milwaukee Road, and the Chicago & North Western Railroad (C&NW). In its 1980 bankruptcy, the Milwaukee Road disposed of the Southwestern Line. The Union Pacific Railroad, which took over the C&NW, operates in Beloit today over a remnant of the former Milwaukee Road, providing a rail connection to Fairbanks-Morse Engine.[clarification needed] The Canadian Pacific Railway operates other trackage in Beloit.[14] The city also had an electric interurban railroad.[when?]


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 17.70 square miles (45.84 km2), of which 17.37 square miles (44.99 km2) is land and 0.33 square miles (0.85 km2) is water.[1] Location: 42°30′30″N 89°01′54″W / 42.50833°N 89.03167°W / 42.50833; -89.03167.

The city is adjacent to the Town of Beloit, Town of Turtle, and the Illinois municipality of South Beloit.

Most of Beloit's development is occurring on the east side, adjacent to Interstates 39/90 and Interstate 43, where the city annexed rural land for the extensive Beloit Gateway Industrial Park, as well as in the newly revitalized downtown located along the Rock River.

Demographics Historical population Census Pop. %± 18604,098—18704,3967.3%18804,7909.0%18906,31531.8%190010,43665.3%191015,12544.9%192021,28440.7%193023,61110.9%194025,3657.4%195029,59016.7%196032,84611.0%197035,7298.8%198035,207−1.5%199035,5731.0%200035,7750.6%201036,9663.3%Est. 201636,757[3]−0.6%U.S. Decennial Census[15] 2010 census

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 36,966 people, 13,781 households, and 8,867 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,128.2 inhabitants per square mile (821.7/km2). There were 15,177 housing units at an average density of 873.7 per square mile (337.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 68.9% White, 15.1% African American, 0.4% Native American, 1.1% Asian, 10.0% from other races, and 4.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 17.1% of the population.

There were 13,781 households of which 36.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.6% were married couples living together, 18.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.4% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.7% were non-families. 29.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.16.

The median age in the city was 33.1 years. 27.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 12.1% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.7% were from 25 to 44; 23.1% were from 45 to 64; and 12% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.9% male and 52.1% female.


Beloit is represented by Janis Ringhand and Stephen Nass in the Wisconsin State Senate, Amy Loudenbeck and Mark Spreitzer in the Wisconsin State Assembly, Mark Pocan in the United States House of Representatives, and Ron Johnson and Tammy Baldwin in the United States Senate.

Beloit has a council-manager system of government, with seven council members, each elected for two year terms. Four members are elected in even years and three in odd years. City council elections are held annually in April.[16] The city council establishes policies for the city and appoints a city manager to implement those policies. The current city manager, Lori S. Curtis Luther, was appointed on June 1, 2015.[17]


Industries with headquarters in Beloit include ABC Supply Company, Bio-Systems International, Broaster Company, Murmac Paint Manufacturing, PlayMonster, and Regal Beloit.

Downtown Beloit is a dense cluster of mostly small shops and boutiques. The area has been recognized for increased investment and renewal since the 1990s.[18] Upscale downtown condominiums and hotels were introduced post-2000 with the construction of the Hotel Hilton Apartments (2001), the Beloit Inn (now the Ironworks Hotel) (2003), Heritage View (2005), and the Phoenix Project (2013).

From the 1990s to 2011, downtown Beloit received direct public and private investment totaling more than $75 million.[18] In 2011, Beloit was a Great American Main Street Award winner.[19] In 2012, Beloit was listed #17 on Travel and Leisure's list of America's Greatest Mainstreets.[20][21]


The School District of Beloit serves more than 7,400 students in six primary schools, four intermediate schools, and one high school, with alternative programming and charter schools. Beloit Memorial High School is the city's public high school. The Roy Chapman Andrews Academy, a project-based charter school, is part of the School District of Beloit and serves grades 6 through 12.

Beloit College entrance

Beloit College, a private liberal arts college with undergraduate enrollment around 1,300, is located in the city. The campus has a number of prehistoric Indian mounds.

Blackhawk Technical College, a public technical school, has a campus in downtown Beloit.

Beloit is also home to Concordia University's Beloit location, Beloit Center. The center offers courses designed for working adults interested in getting their associate's, bachelor's, and graduate degrees.[22]

Beloit has a public library which is part of the Arrowhead Library System.

  • The Angel Museum
  • Beloit Civic Theatre
  • Beloit Fine Art Center
  • Beloit Historical Society
  • Beloit International Film Festival
  • Beloit Janesville Symphony
  • Logan Museum of Anthropology
  • Turtle Creek Chamber Orchestra
  • Wright Museum of Art

Beloit's main festivals include:

  • Beloit International Film Festival
  • Winterfest
  • Beloit Heritage Days
  • Beloit Autorama
  • Music at Harry's Place

Beloit is home to a professional minor league baseball team, the Beloit Snappers. The Snappers are a part of the Oakland Athletics organization.

  • Beloit is the only city in Rock County to have been named an All-America City.[23]
  • Beloit was one of Travel + Leisure's top 20 Greatest American Main Streets[24] for 2014.
  • The 2015 Milken Institute Best-Performing Cities Index ranked the Janesville-Beloit metropolitan area #4 by how well they created and sustained jobs and economic growth.
  • In 2017, Beloit's main street was named one of five "Most Romantic" Main Streets for 2017 by National Main Street Center.[25]
Notable people
  • Thomas Ryum Amlie, U.S. Representative
  • Marcia Anderson, U. S. Army Major General
  • Roy Chapman Andrews, adventurer and naturalist
  • Fred Ascani, U.S. Air Force Major General
  • Alan E. Ashcraft, Jr., Illinois State Representative
  • Clinton Babbitt, U.S. Representative
  • George B. Belting, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Jim Breton, MLB player
  • Jason W. Briggs, leader in development of Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
  • James A. Brittan, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Tony Brizzolara, MLB player
  • Richard Burdge, Wisconsin State Senator
  • Jackson J. Bushnell, educator
  • Jim Caldwell, Beloit Memorial High School alumnus, former head coach of NFL's Detroit Lions
  • Thomas Chrowder Chamberlin, geologist
  • Franklin Clarke, professional football player for Dallas Cowboys (1960–1967) and Cleveland Browns (1957–1959)
  • Lawrence E. Cunningham, Wisconsin State Senator
  • Horatio N. Davis, Wisconsin State Senator
  • Delmar DeLong, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Burger M. Engebretson, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • John E. Erickson, NBA executive
  • Betty Everett, rock and jazz singer ("The Shoop Shoop Song")
  • Edward A. Everett, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • The Felix Culpa, post-hardcore band
  • Dorr Felt, inventor of comptometer
  • Edwin G. Fifield, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Bill Flannigan, NFL player
  • Patsy Gharrity, MLB player
  • Danny Gokey, American Idol contestant, choir director at a Beloit church
  • Bernie Graham, professional baseball player
  • John Hackett, businessman and politician
  • Jim Hall, professional boxer
  • Edward F. Hansen, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • William O. Hansen, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Bill Hanzlik, NBA player and coach
  • Jonathan Harr, journalist and author of A Civil Action
  • Ken Hendricks, founder of ABC Supply, listed on the Forbes 400
  • William H. Hurlbut, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Gary Johnson, elected majority leader of Wisconsin Assembly in 1980 and 1983[26]
  • Jerry Kenney, baseball player for New York Yankees (1967, 1969–1972) and Cleveland Indians (1973)
  • John Baxter Kinne, Medal of Honor recipient
  • Stephanie Klett, television personality, Miss Wisconsin 1992
  • Gene Knutson, NFL player
  • Richard LaPiere, sociologist at Stanford University
  • Eugene Lee, Tony Award-winning set designer (Wicked, Saturday Night Live)
  • Wallace Leschinsky, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Alonzo J. Mathison, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Max Maxfield, Wyoming Secretary of State
  • Juan Conway McNabb (John Conway McNabb), Roman Catholic bishop, missionary in Peru
  • Dr. Edward Strong Merrill, Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame, multi-sport athlete, Beloit College, '02[27]
  • Sereno Merrill, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Elmer Miller, MLB player
  • Tommy Mills, head coach of Creighton Bluejays, Georgetown Hoyas and Arkansas State Indians football teams; Creighton and Arkansas State men's basketball, Notre Dame Fighting Irish baseball
  • Orsen N. Nielsen, U.S. diplomat
  • David Noggle, Wisconsin State Assemblyman, Chief Justice of Supreme Court of Idaho Territory
  • Russ Oltz, NFL player
  • Danica Patrick, NASCAR auto racing driver and model
  • George Perring, MLB player
  • Samuel L. Plummer, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Alan S. Robertson, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Robert P. Robinson, Wisconsin State Senator
  • Judy Robson, former majority leader, Wisconsin Senate
  • David Roth, opera director
  • Jane Sherman, actress, writer, composer, dancer with The Rockettes
  • Richard Shoemaker, Wisconsin State Senator
  • Tracy Silverman, violinist
  • Erastus G. Smith, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Simon Smith, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Robert C. Strong, U.S. diplomat
  • William Barstow Strong, former president of Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway
  • Tyree Talton, NFL player
  • Rusty Tillman, NFL player and assistant coach, XFL head coach
  • S. J. Todd, Wisconsin State Senator
  • Allen F. Warden, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Arthur Pratt Warner, aviator and inventor
  • Kyle Weaver, professional basketball player for Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Floyd E. Wheeler, Wisconsin State Assemblyman and lawyer
  • John D. Wickhem, Justice of Wisconsin Supreme Court
  • Albert J. Winegar, Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Zip Zabel, MLB player
  • Robin Zander, musician (Cheap Trick)
Images References
  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2012-07-14. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  3. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017. 
  4. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-03-05. Retrieved 2012-04-19. 
  6. ^ a b Callary, Edward. 2009. Place Names of Illinois. Champaign: University of Illinois Press, p. 326.
  7. ^ "Frank Blodgett Dies at Age 82". Janesville Daily Gazette. March 21, 1949. p. 1. Retrieved August 26, 2014 – via 
  8. ^ D.V.M., Ralph S. Cooper,. "Arthur P. Warner". Retrieved 21 June 2017. 
  9. ^ Beloit Historical Society Archived July 8, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ Appleby, John Francis 1840 - 1917 Archived February 10, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ "REMEMBER - This Is Beloit". This Is Beloit |. Retrieved 2017-02-01.  Internet Archive: This is Beloit - Remember Retrieved May 26, 2018
  12. ^ Atlas Obscura: Brief History of the Cheese Curl Retrieved May 26, 2018
  13. ^ "Wisconsin Main Street map and founding years" (PDF). Wisconsin Main Street Association. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  14. ^ "Beloit, WI, Operations". Retrieved 21 June 2017. 
  15. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  16. ^ "City Council - Welcome to the City of Beloit". Retrieved 2017-02-15. 
  17. ^ "City Manager - Welcome to the City of Beloit". Retrieved 2017-02-15. 
  18. ^ a b "The 2011 Great American Main Street Award Winners". Preservation Nation. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  19. ^ Stewart, Erica (23 May 2011). "The 2011 Great American Main Street Award Winners: Places You'll Want to Know (and Visit!)". PreservationNation Blog. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  20. ^ "America's Greatest Mainstreets 2012". 
  21. ^ Adams, Barry. "Downtown Beloit an Emerging Destination". Wisconsin State Journal. Retrieved 24 March 2014. 
  22. ^ "Beloit - Concordia University Wisconsin". Concordia University Wisconsin. Retrieved 2017-02-15. 
  23. ^{AA77531B-C0D5-4BC2-A0AE-B58551C3F8C7}
  24. ^ "Beloit, WI". Retrieved 21 June 2017. 
  25. ^ "Most Romantic Main Streets 2017". Retrieved 21 June 2017. 
  26. ^ "Legislative Spotlight". Retrieved 21 June 2017. 
  27. ^ Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame, 1964 inductee
External links Wikimedia Commons has media related to Beloit, Wisconsin.
  • City of Beloit
  • Visit Beloit
  • Greater Beloit Chamber of Commerce
  • Downtown Beloit Association
  • v
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Municipalities and communities of Rock County, Wisconsin, United StatesCounty seat: JanesvilleCities
  • Beloit
  • Brodhead‡
  • Edgerton‡
  • Evansville
  • Janesville
  • Milton
  • Clinton
  • Footville
  • Orfordville
  • Avon
  • Beloit
  • Bradford
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  • Clinton
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  • Harmony
  • Janesville
  • Johnstown
  • La Prairie
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  • Porter
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  • Turtle
  • Union
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  • Anderson
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  • Belcrest
  • Bergen
  • Cainville
  • Center
  • Charlie Bluff
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  • Emerald Grove
  • Fairfield‡
  • Foxhollow
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  • Indianford
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  • Koshkonong‡
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  • Porters
  • Shopiere
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Ghost towns/neighborhoods
  • Fellows
  • Jefferson Prairie Settlement
Footnotes‡This populated place also has portions in an adjacent county or counties
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Coordinates: 42°30′30″N 89°01′54″W / 42.50833°N 89.03167°W / 42.50833; -89.03167



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