We are Sterling, Illinois.
Our history is rooted in industry dating back millennia. The Hopewell Civilization and its crafting of flint stone pipes and tools were traded well beyond the region. The history of making things echoed as new settlement came to Sterling in the 1800's. Manufacturing and innovation became the foundation of our early success as the river and railroads connected Sterling to the nation earning our city the designation of the "Hardware Capital of the World."
As our industrial base grew, so did commerce as farmers and traders settled here from many cultures to create a center of diverse activity for the region.
A Place Where Business Thrives
While the nature of our industry has changed, we continue to be a place where business thrives. Every day we enjoy an influx of 6,000 people that come to our City to work in a growing job base in companies that impact our nation and the world.
Our industrial past thrives in one of the oldest and most successful business incubators in the state including a commercial kitchen that transforms the agriculture of the region into products for consumers.
Places for Our People
As our community thrived we recognized the importance of creating places for our people. We built a dynamic downtown with stunning architecture, civic spaces for our citizens to gather, and a premier system of parks and recreational activities. We built schools that remain the envy of communities our size. We built a hospital to care for our people. We live in neighborhoods that are warm and welcoming to longtime residents and newcomers alike.
We understand that to be competitive in a changing economy we must innovate. Our education system includes remarkable partnerships to retain the talent of the young people of Sterling. We have transformed a school into an Arts Academy that nourishes the imagination and creativity of our youth. We collaborate and cooperate with the understanding that our future rests with the dreams of our youngest citizens.
We remain a community where healthcare thrives in one of the few locally owned healthcare systems in Illinois. We know that providing care for the well-being of our citizens is a mission that involves compassion and skill.
We have curated inventive ways revive our historic downtown. We reinvest in buildings once vacant that house new restaurants and shops. We welcome visitors with events, public art, and activities that bring people to our streets. We listen to a band in a stunning park that has been performing for nearly a century. We shop in a market that brings regional food and craft to downtown. We look to the future with optimism.
Our riverfront represents a singular and transformative opportunity that will combine all of the innovation, ingenuity, and inventiveness that has been the hallmark of Sterling. We know that through the seeds of public investment we will reap the bounty of private transformation that will serve this city for generations to come.
We cherish our industrial past, present, and future; we are inspired by the ideas of our youth and the wisdom of our elders; we know that in this state we represent the best of what true community means.
Industrious. Inspired. Innovative
We invite you to discover Sterling, Illinois: Industrious. Inspired. Innovative.