“The Crossroad of Progress- Accepting the challenge of hometown needs”
Red Bud is located in the northwest part of Randolph County (Where Illinois Begins). It is within easy commuter distance of metropolitan St. Louis. It is about 7 miles west of the Kaskaskia River that provides a 36-mile long navigable artery for industry and recreation. Its history dates back to 1820 when Preston Brickey constructed a little log cabin in the northern part of the city. The first school was held in an abandoned pole cabin in 1824, and the first teacher was Samuel Crozier, the father of one of the founders of Red Bud. A store was opened in 1841, and soon other businesses began to operate as more settlers came to the area. R.D Durfee, Samuel Crozier and Wm. Simmons, along with other prominent settlers, laid out additions for a town in 1847. The first lots were sold at a public auction. At that time, its site was partly covered with redbud trees, from which the town derived its name. Rapid development occurred in the next 20 years as population grew. Homes and businesses were constructed mainly of brick from the brick, lime kilns and stone quarries located in the city. The city became an important station on the stagecoach route between St. Louis, Belleville, Kaskaskia and Chester. The first brick building was a public school. The stone inscription read, “Red Bud Publick School, 1854” and this stone was built into the present Red Bud Elementary School.
Red Bud received it charter in 1867 and was incorporated as a city in 1875. The business of the city government has been conducted in the city hall since it was built in 1894. The city hall was designed by Louis Hormann, an architect from St. Louis. The exterior of the city hall has remained basically the same. It houses the city offices, police department and council chambers. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The city owns and operates a municipal power plant. In 1904, the original generating plant from electricity was build, and this plant has been continuously improved and expanded to meet the needs of the residents. The city is interconnected with Southern Illinois Power Cooperative, so it can either produce or purchase its own power. The most recent addition is the installation of two engines that can produce up to 5600 KW. Red Bud’s first sewerage system was installed between 1934 and 1936. Natural gas was installed in 1972. Its water source is from two deep wells near the Kaskaskia River.
Red Bud is the center for three state highways, Illinois 3, 154 and 159 which meet at the city’s four way stop. The city has an aldermanic form of government. Along with the mayor, city clerk and treasurer, there are eight council members who are elected to four-year terms. An administrative assistant is employed to provide assistance to the mayor. City hall can be reached at 618-282-2315