Westernport, Maryland

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Westernport, Maryland
Town
Downtown looking east on Church St in January 2014
Downtown looking east on Church St in January 2014
Location of Westernport, Maryland
Location of Westernport, Maryland
Coordinates: 39°29′12″N 79°2′36″W / 39.48667°N 79.04333°W / 39.48667; -79.04333Coordinates: 39°29′12″N 79°2′36″W / 39.48667°N 79.04333°W / 39.48667; -79.04333
Country United States
State Maryland
County Allegany
Settled 1758
Incorporated 1859
Government
 • Mayor Daniel Laffey
 • Water Commissioner Tom Martin
Area[1]
 • Total 0.89 sq mi (2.31 km2)
 • Land 0.87 sq mi (2.25 km2)
 • Water 0.02 sq mi (0.05 km2)
Elevation 922 ft (281 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • Total 1,888
 • Estimate (2012[3]) 1,850
 • Density 2,170.1/sq mi (837.9/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 21540, 21562
Area code(s) 301
FIPS code 24-82750
GNIS feature ID 0591532

Westernport is a town in Allegany County, Maryland, United States, located along the Georges Creek Valley. It is part of the Cumberland, MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,888 at the 2010 census.

History[edit]

St. Peter Catholic Church on Church St in January 2014

Westernport's first settlement is identified on a French military map dating from 1758. The map is currently on display at École Militaire in Paris. The settlement at that time had no name. By 1774, it was known as Hardscrabble because the rocky soil made planting difficult. Some time in the mid-1790s, the name was changed to Westernport, with the town being the western-most navigable port on the Potomac River. In the late 18th century and early to mid part of the 19th century, coal and timber was loaded onto flatboats where George's Creek empties into the Potomac, then floated down to near Great Falls, Virginia, where the goods were unloaded, the boats broken up to sell as lumber, and the operators walking back to Westernport. The town was incorporated in 1859.

In 1886-87 the Piedmont and Cumberland Railway was built through Westernport, connecting the town to Cumberland, Maryland.[4]

The Waverly Street Bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984.[5] The Meyer Site was listed in 1973.[5]

Notable residents[edit]

  • Stephen Wheeler Downey, the "Father of the University of Wyoming", was born in Westernport in 1839. He became a trustee and eventual president of the University of Wyoming from 1891–97.
  • Deborah "Debbie" Sue Phelps (nèe Davisson), the mother of the most decorated Olympian of all time, Michael Phelps, was raised in Westernport and attended Bruce High School.
  • Kendra Warnick, Extra, Model and Actress, Moved to NYC to start her career, played in several comedy and drama movies and was beginning to model before she moved back to Westernport in 2013, she now resides.

Nearby communities[edit]

Geography[edit]

Welcome sign

Westernport is located at 39°29′12″N 79°2′36″W / 39.48667°N 79.04333°W / 39.48667; -79.04333 (39.486671, -79.043417).[6]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 0.89 square miles (2.31 km2), of which, 0.87 square miles (2.25 km2) is land and 0.02 square miles (0.05 km2) is water.[1]

Climate[edit]

The climate in this area has mild differences between highs and lows, and there is adequate rainfall year round. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Westernport has a marine west coast climate, abbreviated "Cfb" on climate maps.[7]

Demographics[edit]

2010 census[edit]

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 1,888 people, 810 households, and 532 families residing in the town. The population density was 2,170.1 inhabitants per square mile (837.9 /km2). There were 1,006 housing units at an average density of 1,156.3 per square mile (446.4 /km2). The racial makeup of the town was 98.6% White, 0.5% African American, 0.1% Asian, and 0.7% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.4% of the population.

There were 810 households of which 27.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.0% were married couples living together, 9.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 34.3% were non-families. 31.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.88.

The median age in the town was 44 years. 20.4% of residents were under the age of 18; 9% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 21.8% were from 25 to 44; 27.6% were from 45 to 64; and 21.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 48.7% male and 51.3% female.

2000 census[edit]

American Legion building in downtown in January 2014

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 2,104 people, 909 households, and 601 families residing in the town. The population density was 2,385.6 people per square mile (923.1/km²). There were 1,056 housing units at an average density of 1,197.3 per square mile (463.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 99.24% White, 0.19% African American, 0.10% Native American, 0.14% Asian, and 0.33% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.29% of the population.

There were 909 households out of which 27.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.2% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.8% were non-families. 31.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 20.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.88.

The age distribution is 22.6% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 25.9% from 25 to 44, 20.7% from 45 to 64, and 22.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 91.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.1 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $23,681, and the median income for a family was $31,714. Males had a median income of $34,896 versus $16,920 for females. The per capita income for the town was $12,503. About 12.1% of families and 16.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.9% of those under age 18 and 14.2% of those age 65 or over.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-25. 
  2. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-25. 
  3. ^ "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-06-26. 
  4. ^ Clarke, Alan (2003). West Virginia Central and Pittsburg Railway. Lynchburg, VA: TLC Publishing. pp. 27–30. ISBN 1-883089-87-5. 
  5. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2008-04-15. 
  6. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  7. ^ Climate Summary for Westernport, Maryland
  8. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.