About This Place
West Salem is a village in Edwards County, Illinois, United States. The population was 1,001 at the 2000 census.
West Salem is within the Wabash Valley seismic zone. On April 18, 2008 at 09:36:56 UTC (04:36:56 Central) a moderate earthquake of 5.2 magnitude was centered near the village. It was felt widespread across southern Illinois, Central Indiana and eastern portions of Missouri including St. Louis, 123 miles (198 km) away
According to tradition, in 1830 a man named Walser traveled through the area where the town later was located. When he returned home to Salem, North Carolina, he told of the beautiful forests, prairies, streams, and wild game he had seen. A number of Moravian families, hearing these reports, moved from North Carolina to take up land in this area. The earliest of these settlers was Adam Hedrick, who purchased his land on August 25, 1830. Second was Peter Hinkle, who claimed his land on May 30, 1831.