Tuesday, August 14, 2007

White Squirrels of Olney, Illinois

Olney, Illinois is one of the towns claiming to be the home of white squirrels. The City of Olney website has some history of their white squirrels. There are two hypotheses about how white squirrels came to Olney in 1902. Olney held a 100-Year White Squirrel Celebration on October 12, 2002.

About 1941, there were 800 white squirrels in Olney. Olney has a squirrel count each fall, and recently the number of white squirrels apparently has been down to the 100-120 range.

Roadsideamerica.com (your online guide to offbeat tourist attractions) has a page on the White Squirrel Wars. Five towns use albino squirrels as their claims to fame: Olney, IL; Marionville, MO; Kenton, TN; Brevard, NC; Exeter, ON. Olney is considered the loudest booster of the white squirrel towns, titling itself Home of the White Squirrels.

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