Wynne, Arkansas

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Wynne, Arkansas
City
"The City with a Smile"
"The City with a Smile"
Location in Cross County and the state of Arkansas
Location in Cross County and the state of Arkansas
Coordinates: 35°13′39″N 90°47′22″W / 35.22750°N 90.78944°W / 35.22750; -90.78944Coordinates: 35°13′39″N 90°47′22″W / 35.22750°N 90.78944°W / 35.22750; -90.78944
Country United States
State Arkansas
County Cross
Post office opened September 27, 1882
Government
 • Mayor Paul Nichols
Area
 • Total 8.87 sq mi (22.98 km2)
 • Land 8.86 sq mi (22.96 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)
Elevation 262 ft (80 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 8,367
 • Density 944/sq mi (364.5/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 72396
Area code(s) 870
FIPS code 05-77090
GNIS feature ID 0078815
Website www.cityofwynne.com

Wynne is the county seat and largest city of Cross County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 8,367 at the 2010 Census.[1] Nestled between the Arkansas Delta and Crowley's Ridge, Wynne is the closest city to the largest state park in Arkansas, Village Creek State Park.

Geography[edit]

Wynne lies in south-central Cross County at 35°13′39″N 90°47′22″W / 35.22750°N 90.78944°W / 35.22750; -90.78944 (35.227435, -90.789435),[2] the boundary between two distinct geographical areas of Arkansas: the fertile farmland of the Arkansas Delta (which is a part of the larger Mississippi Alluvial Plain), and Crowley's Ridge, a distinct rise marking the New Madrid Fault Line.

U.S. Route 64 passes through the northern side of the city, leading east 37 miles (60 km) to Marion and west 58 miles (93 km) to Searcy. Arkansas Highway 1 leads north 25 miles (40 km) to Harrisburg and south 14 miles (23 km) to Interstate 40 at Forrest City.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Wynne has a total area of 8.9 square miles (23.0 km2), of which 0.012 square miles (0.03 km2), or 0.12%, is water.[1]

The town of Wynne is considered "the city with a smile" and displays this title proudly on their single overpass which is also painted in the school colors of blue and gold.

Demographics[edit]

According to the census[3] of 2000, there were 8,615 people, 3,245 households, and 2,323 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,056.5 people per square mile (408.1/km²). There were 3,476 housing units at an average density of 426.3 per square mile (164.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 75.91% White, 22.32% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.48% Asian, 0.27% from other races, and 0.88% from two or more races. 1.03% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 3,245 households out of which 36.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.5% were married couples living together, 19.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.4% were non-families. 26.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.09.

In the city the population was spread out with 28.7% under the age of 18, 8.7% from 18 to 24, 27.4% from 25 to 44, 20.4% from 45 to 64, and 14.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 87.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 80.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $30,125, and the median income for a family was $35,714. Males had a median income of $30,506 versus $20,567 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,800. About 17.9% of families and 21.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 30.7% of those under age 18 and 17.6% of those age 65 or over.

Early history[edit]

The Commercial District is one of ten sites in Wynne listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Wynne was named for Captain Jesse Watkins Wynne. Wynne, a Texan, achieved the rank of Captain in the Civil War at the age of just 21, and he was famous for once leading a group of his captors up to the Confederate lines, where he then marched them to headquarters as his own prisoners.

In 1867, Captain Wynne moved to St. Francis County, Arkansas, and joined the finance company of Dennis & Beck. At that time, the Dennis & Beck company held savings for other companies and for individuals, but eventually, it became the Bank of Eastern Arkansas, and Wynne became its first president.

From 1880 to 1885, as the St. Louis, Iron Mountain, and Southern Railroad was under construction, active steamboat riverports like Wittsburg, at that time the county seat of Cross County, were deserted for the railroads.

The location of the settlement of Wynne was first chosen in 1882, when a train derailed, leaving one boxcar without wheels and off the tracks. That boxcar was then turned upright as a building, and as a compliment to Captain Wynne, it was designated the "Wynne Station". On September 27, 1882, the Wynne Station Post Office was opened.

When the east-west railroad line was completed, it crossed the north-south line near the boxcar, and the name "Wynne Junction" became well known in the area. On May 28, 1888, the "Junction" part of the name was dropped, and the town of Wynne was formed.

By the 1890s, the railroad traffic and the resulting activity in Wynne made it a more vibrant town than the town of Vanndale, which had been the county seat since 1886. In 1903, the county seat of Cross County was moved to Wynne.

With the advent of the U.S. Highway System in the 1920s and 30s, U.S. Route 64 was built west from Memphis, through Wynne, and to points west. Also, the north-south Arkansas Highway 1 was built through Wynne, making it an important highway crossroads for several decades, in addition to being a railroad town. Since the advent of the Interstate Highway System, Interstate 40 has largely diverted long-distance travel away from Wynne.

Notable people[edit]

Gallery[edit]

Climate[edit]

The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Wynne has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[5]

References[edit]

External links[edit]