Williamson County is the geographic and economic hub of southern Illinois. Located at the crossroads of the region’s two major highways, it is a business and tourist magnet. Williamson County is growing at a faster rate than any other county in southern Illinois—1.9% since the 2000 census.
Williamson County is in the center ofhigher education in southern Illinois. John A. Logan College is in Carterville while Southern Illinois University Carbondale is less than 15 miles to the west. Rend Lake College, Southeastern Illinois College and Shawnee College are all
less than 45 minutes away.
Williamson County and all of southern Illinois is truly a sportsman’s dream. There are half a dozen lakes in the county and that many more within 50 miles. The county is home to the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge and much of its land is included in the Shawnee National Forest. Outdoor sporting activities abound throughout the area.
Williamson County is also a tourist headquarters for the area. Twenty-one state parks and 13 federal recreation areas are located within easy driving distance. HerrinFesta Italiana, National Hunting and Fishing Days and scores of local festivals bring thousands of visitors annually to the region. Williamson County boasts half a dozen golf courses and three-dozen more can be found within 50 miles. Over 1500 motel rooms are located in the county and nearly 5000 are within an hour’s drive.