West Plains, Missouri
|West Plains, Missouri|
|— City —|
|• Mayor||Jack Pahlmann |
|• Total||13.33 sq mi (34.52 km2)|
|• Land||13.31 sq mi (34.47 km2)|
|• Water||0.02 sq mi (0.05 km2) 0.15%%|
|Elevation||1,004 ft (306 m)|
|• Estimate (2011)||12,063|
|• Density||900.5/sq mi (347.7/km2)|
|Time zone||Central Standard Time (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||Central Daylight Time (UTC-5)|
|GNIS feature ID||0740027|
West Plains is a city in Howell County, Missouri, United States. The population was 11,986 at the 2010 Census. It is the county seat of Howell County. The West Plains Micropolitan Statistical Area consists of Howell County.
West Plains is served by various radio stations and one television station: TV: K38HE channel 38 (24 hour Christian television) Radio: KKDY 102.5FM KSPQ 93.9FM "Jack FM" KUKU "Cool Classic Country" KUPH 96.9FM The Fox KBMV 107.1FM "News Talk Radio" KHOM 100.9FM "ESPN Radio"
West Plains is located at . According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.33 square miles (34.52 km2), of which, 13.31 square miles (34.47 km2) is land and 0.02 square miles (0.05 km2) is water.(36.737355, -91.864991)
West Plains Dance Hall Explosion 
West Plains was the site of a disaster remembered in folksong. On April 13, 1928, about sixty young people had gathered in the Bond Dance Hall, on the second floor of an East Main Street building (the ground floor was occupied by Wiser Motors). At 11:05 p.m., as the orchestra played "At Sundown," a violent explosion occurred. Thirty-seven people were killed and 22 more were injured. Twenty of the dead were never positively identified. They were buried in a mass grave at Oak Lawn Cemetery, where they are memorialized by the Rock of Ages monument, erected October 6, 1929.  The origin of the explosion was never ascertained; it was suspected that the cause was leaking gasoline from the garage below. Windows were shattered throughout the Halstead block, and the heat, combined with subsequent explosions, twisted cars on the street out of shape. The nearby West Plains Courthouse was so badly damaged by the explosion that it had to be vacated and demolished. Robert Neathery, a lifelong resident of West Plains who died at the age of 96 in 2003, wrote in his 1994 book, West Plains as I Knew It, that a truck full of dynamite parked in the garage below might have caused the explosion.
West Plains is served by two U.S. Highways including U.S. 63 AND U.S. 160. The city is also served by State Routes 17 and 14 and State County Roads K, CC, ZZ, JJ, and PP. West Plains is served by the West Plains Regional Airport located in nearby Pomona, Missouri north of the city.
2010 census 
As of the census of 2010, there were 11,986 people, 5,001 households, and 3,012 families residing in the city. The population density was 900.5 inhabitants per square mile (347.7 /km2). There were 5,509 housing units at an average density of 413.9 per square mile (159.8 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.0% White, 0.8% African American, 0.6% Native American, 0.9% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.8% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.2% of the population.
There were 5,001 households out of which 31.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.0% were married couples living together, 13.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 39.8% were non-families. 34.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 15% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.93.
The median age in the city was 36.7 years. 24.6% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.4% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.1% were from 25 to 44; 22.1% were from 45 to 64; and 18.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 45.8% male and 54.2% female.
2000 census 
As of the census of 2000, there were 10,866 people, 4,518 households, and 2,909 families residing in the city. The population density was 879.0 people per square mile (339.4/km²). There were 5,072 housing units at an average density of 410.3 per square mile (158.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.72% White, 0.73% African American, 0.96% Native American, 0.71% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.52% from other races, and 1.31% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.65% of the population.
There were 4,518 households out of which 31.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.6% were married couples living together, 12.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.6% were non-families. 32.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.87.
In the city the population was spread out with 24.8% under the age of 18, 8.7% from 18 to 24, 25.6% from 25 to 44, 19.6% from 45 to 64, and 21.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 83.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 77.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $24,122, and the median income for a family was $30,369. Males had a median income of $24,705 versus $17,312 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,019. About 15.1% of families and 19.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.2% of those under age 18 and 12.5% of those age 65 or over.
K-12 Public education is provided by the West Plains R-7 School District. Private schools include: Faith Assembly Christian School (PK-12), Crossroads Christian Academy, and Ozarks Christian Academy.
Notable residents 
- Egbert B. Brown, Union American Civil War died here.
- Ha Ha Tonka, an indie rock band founded in Springfield, Missouri, but three members were raised in West Plains.
- Jan Howard Born Lula Grace Johnson March 13, 1930, country and western singer.
- Preacher Roe Born Elwin Charles Roe (February 16, 1916 – November 9, 2008), major league baseball left-handed pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates and Brooklyn Dodgers.
- Stephen W. Thompson (March 20, 1894 – October 9, 1977), credited with the first aerial victory by the U.S. military.
- Dick Van Dyke (b. December 13, 1925 in West Plains, but raised in Danville, Illinois), actor.
- Porter Wagoner (August 12, 1927 – October 28, 2007), country and western singer.
- Daniel Woodrell (b. March 4, 1953), crime fiction novelist (Woe to Live On, Winter's Bone).
- Bill Virdon born June 9, 1931 in Michigan, graduated from WPHS. Major League Baseball Player and Manager.
See also 
- National Audio Theatre Festival, an annual conference and group of performances frequently held in West Plains, and including local participants. In past years, an audio play was written around the events in the city.
- "Jack Pahlmann is new mayor of West Plains". Retrieved 2012-08-28.
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-07-08.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-07-08.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-04.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "The West Plains Explosion (song)". Retrieved 2008-08-23.[dead link]
- "37 KILLED IN MYSTERY BLAST; 22 INJURED". West Plains Weekly Quill (West Plains, Missouri). April 19, 1928. p. 1.
- "Waymark entry for memorial". Retrieved 2008-08-23.
- Cisco, Marideth (1994). West Plains as I Knew It. Willow Springs, Missouri: Yarnspinner Press. pp. 77–83. ISBN none Check
- "Stephen Wilkins Thompson". Retrieved 2007-08-05.
- City of West Plains
- Chamber of Commerce
- West Plains Public Library
- Historic maps of West Plains in the Sanborn Maps of Missouri Collection at the University of Missouri