Independence, Kansas

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Independence is a city in and the county seat of Montgomery County, Kansas, United States.[1] As of the 2010 census, the city population was 9,483.[2] It was named in commemoration of the Declaration of Independence.[3]

History

Independence was settled on land that was purchased from the Osage Indians in September 1869 by George A. Brown for the price of $50; they were being moved to Indian Territory in present-day Oklahoma. He originally called the townsite Colfax after Schuyler Colfax, vice president under President Ulysses S. Grant.[4] On August 21, 1869 a group of Oswego, Kansas men led by R. W. Wright settled there with the intent to make Independence the county seat.[5] E. E. Wilson and F D. Irwin opened the first store in October 1869, Wilson & Irwin Groceries.[6] Independence was designated county seat in 1870.[7]

A permanent lighting system was first used for an exhibition baseball game on April 17, 1930 between the Independence Producers and House of David semi-professional baseball team of Benton Harbor, Michigan, with the Independence team winning with a score of 9 to 1 before a crowd of 1,700 spectators.[8]

Miss Able, a rhesus monkey, was born at Ralph Mitchell Zoo. Miss Able along with Miss Baker, a squirrel monkey, became the first monkeys to fly in space; they returned alive on May 28, 1959.[9]

Geography

Independence is located along the Verdigris River just south of its confluence with the Elk River. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of Template:Convert, of which, Template:Convert is land and Template:Convert is water.[10]

Climate

Independence has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen Cfa) characterized by hot, humid and unpleasant summers, and chilly though extremely variable winters. Precipitation is heavy in summer due to frequent incursions of very moist air from the Gulf of Mexico: as much as Template:Convert fell on May 27, 1984 and a maximum daily fall of Template:Convert can be expected in an average calendar year. The wettest month has been June 2007 when Template:Convert was reported, whereas July 1935 saw a mere Template:Convert. The winters are drier and cold, although temperatures in winter are very erratic, ranging from an average of four afternoons in the three winter months above Template:Convert to an average of three mornings below Template:Convert. Winters are much drier than the summer, with November 1986 and October 1952 seeing not even a trace of precipitation.[11]

Overall the wettest calendar year has been 1908 with Template:Convert – although the incomplete year of 2007 likely had more than this – and the driest 1952 with only Template:Convert.[11] The hottest month has been July 1936 with an average of Template:Convert and a mean maximum of Template:Convert, whilst the coldest has been July 1979 with an average of Template:Convert, a mean maximum of only Template:Convert and a mean minimum of Template:Convert. The hottest monthly mean minimum was in July 2011 with a mean low as high as Template:Convert. Template:Weather box

Demographics

Template:US Census population

2010 census

As of the census[12] of 2010, there were 9,483 people, 3,950 households, and 2,430 families living in the city. The population density was Template:Convert. There were 4,528 housing units at an average density of Template:Convert. The racial makeup of the city was 84.2% White, 6.5% African American, 1.6% Native American, 0.9% Asian, 2.3% from other races, and 4.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.5% of the population.

There were 3,950 households of which 33.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.9% were married couples living together, 14.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 38.5% were non-families. 33.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 2.95.

The median age in the city was 36.9 years. 26% of residents were under the age of 18; 8.6% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.5% were from 25 to 44; 24.9% were from 45 to 64; and 15.9% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.4% male and 51.6% female.

2000 census

As of the census[13] of 2000, there were 9,846 people, 4,149 households, and 2,609 families living in the city. The population density was 1,979.4 people per square mile (764.9/km2). There were 4,747 housing units at an average density of 954.3 per square mile (368.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 87.00% White, 7.17% African American, 1.16% Native American, 0.62% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 1.10% from other races, and 2.95% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.84% of the population.

There were 4,149 households out of which 30.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.8% were married couples living together, 12.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.1% were non-families. 32.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 15.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32, and the average family size was 2.93.

In the city, the population was spread out, with 25.7% under the age of 18, 8.9% from 18 to 24, 26.1% from 25 to 44, 21.3% from 45 to 64, and 18.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 89.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.9 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $29,574, and the median income for a family was $37,134. Males had a median income of $26,552 versus $20,017 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,496. About 11.4% of families and 13.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.7% of those under age 18 and 13.2% of those age 65 or over.

Education

Primary and secondary education

  • Independence High School, grades 9–12
  • Independence Middle School, grades 6–8
  • Jefferson Elementary School, grades 3–5
  • Eisenhower Elementary School, grades Pre-K–2
  • Zion Lutheran School, grades Pre-K–8
  • St. Andrew School, grades Pre-K–8
  • Independence Bible School, grades Pre-K–12
  • Tri-County Education Co-operative, special education, all grades

Community college

The Independence Community College main campus is located two miles south of the city. ICC West Campus is located in the city one mile west of the downtown. Each semester, over 1000 students are enrolled at ICC.[14]

Transportation

Independence is located at the intersection of US-75 and US-160. Rail freight service is provided by the Union Pacific Railroad and South Kansas and Oklahoma Railroad. The Independence Municipal Airport (IDP) is located Template:Convert southwest of the center of the city.

Area events

Area attractions

  • Independence Community College is home to the William Inge Center for the Arts,[15] which maintains the archives of playwright and alumnus, William Inge. The center utilizes the writer's boyhood home for a playwrights-in-residence program, and sponsors the annual William Inge Festival. Each year during the festival a lifetime achievement award is bestowed on a nationally recognized American playwright.
  • The State of Kansas designated the childhood home of Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Ingalls family near Independence as a historic site; it is open to visitors. It is the location where the Charles Ingalls family resided between 1869-1871 and is described in his daughter Laura Ingalls Wilder's book Little House on the Prairie.[16] It includes a cabin modeled after the original and the post office that was originally located at nearby Wayside, Kansas. The Sunnyside School, a one-room schoolhouse that was moved to the site, is also featured. Much of the surrounding countryside retains its open and undeveloped nature. Then located on the Osage reservation, the property is now within the boundaries of the William Kurtis Ranch about 13 miles southwest of downtown Independence.[17]
  • At the 1964 New York World's Fair, Sinclair Oil sponsored a dinosaur exhibit, featuring life-size replicas of nine different dinosaurs. On flatbed trucks, they toured the United States. Sinclair was acquired by Atlantic Richfield (ARCO). After the acquisition by ARCO, one of the nine dinosaurs, the Corythosaurus, was donated to Riverside Park.
  • Elk City Lake and Elk City State Park are located approximately five miles west of Independence. There are six hiking trails located at Elk City Lake, two of which are notable for receiving a National Trails designation. It is also in this area that the ruins of the Le Hunt cement plant are located, although the remains are on private property.

Notable people

Template:See also

References

Template:Reflist

Further reading

Template:Kansas books Template:See also

  • A Guide to Historic Homes in Independence, Kansas; Ken D. Brown; Independence Tribune; 1993.
  • Art Work on Eastern Kansas - part 10 of 12; Western Photogravure Company; 1900. (contains photo of Independence High School)

External links

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Template:Montgomery County, Kansas

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  5. Sherwood, Leon (1970). Official Centennial History of Independence, KS, p. 6. Independence Centennial Inc.
  6. Sherwood, Leon (1970). Official Centennial History of Independence, KS, p. 7. Independence Centennial Inc.
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  11. 11.0 11.1 National Weather Service, Wichita, Kansas; NOW Data
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  15. William Inge Center for the Arts
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  17. "Little House on the Prairie Website"
  18. Independence Daily Reporter, February 23, 2009, p. 1