Clark County, Indiana

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Clark County
Clark County Courthouse in Jeffersonville, Indiana
Clark County Courthouse in Jeffersonville, Indiana
Map of Indiana highlighting Clark County
Location within the U.S. state of Indiana
Map of the United States highlighting Indiana
Indiana's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 38°29′N 85°43′W / 38.48°N 85.72°W / 38.48; -85.72
Country United States
State Indiana
Founded3 February 1801
Named forGeneral George Rogers Clark
SeatJeffersonville
Largest cityJeffersonville
Area
 • Total376.45 sq mi (975.0 km2)
 • Land372.86 sq mi (965.7 km2)
 • Water3.60 sq mi (9.3 km2)  0.96%%
Population
 • Estimate 
(2019)
118,302
 • Density315/sq mi (122/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district9th
Websitewww.co.clark.in.us
 
  • Indiana county number 10
  • Second oldest county in Indiana

Clark County is a county in the U.S. state of Indiana, located directly across the Ohio River from Louisville, Kentucky. At the 2020 census, the population was 121,093.[1] The county seat is Jeffersonville.[2] Clark County is part of the Louisville/Jefferson County, KY–IN Metropolitan Statistical Area.

History[edit]

Clark County lies on the north bank of the Ohio River. A significant gateway to the state of Indiana, Clark County's settlement began in 1783. The state of Virginia rewarded General George Rogers Clark and his regiment for their victorious capture of Forts Kaskaskia, Cahokia, and Vincennes from the British, by granting them 150,000 acres (610 km2) of land. A small portion of this land, 1,000 acres (4.0 km2), became known as Clarksville, the first authorized American settlement in the Northwest Territory, founded the next year in 1784.[3]

Clark County was formed on 3 February 1801, with territory annexed from Knox, the first county formed in the Territory in 1790. This original area in Clark County was subsequently altered and reduced with the formation of other counties: Harrison (1808), Franklin, Jefferson, and Wayne (1811), Switzerland and Washington (1814), Jackson and Ripley (1816), Jennings (1817), Crawford and Randolph (1818), Fayette and Floyd (1819), Scott (1820), Union (1821), Decatur and Rush (1822).[4]

The first county seat was established in Springville, on April 7, 1801.[3] Jeffersonville was platted in 1802, and on 9 June the Territorial Governor (William Henry Harrison) ordered that it be regarded as the county seat. However, on 14 December 1810, the seat designation was given to Charlestown, which retained the designation until 1873, when on 23 September the Jefforsonville mayor (Luther Warder) successfully campaigned for the county seat's return.

Clark County was a hotbed for antislavery sentiment during the territorial period. In 1807, citizens petitioned Congress to uphold the legal prohibition of slavery established in the Northwest Ordinance in response to efforts by Harrison and his supporters to have the prohibition repealed. Many settlers were Quakers who had migrated from North Carolina to escape the oppressive conditions of the slave states and did not want to see slavery be established in Indiana.[5]

From its beginning Clark County's history, culture and growth have been linked to the development of the river. Early nineteenth-century steamboats transported goods to the upper Ohio, providing opportunities for commercial and industrial growth in the county. In 1832, James Howard founded the Howard shipyards making Clark County a leader in shipbuilding.[6]

The railroad brought further economic growth. The Monon line spanned from New Albany to Chicago, and the Jeffersonville, Madison, and Indianapolis Railroad provided Clark County and southern Indiana with access to the northern trading centers of Indianapolis and Chicago.

Industries locating to Clark County during the nineteenth century included the Louisville Cement Company in Speed, Indiana and the Ford Plate Glass Company established in Jeffersonville in 1876.

During the 1920s, Clark County attracted the Colgate-Palmolive Company to the Clarksville Riverfront. Colgate purchased the former Indiana Reformatory building in 1923. The company rehabilitated and adapted the building for its dedication in 1924. It stayed in business until early 2008.[6]

During World War II the county prospered. The federal government began the Indiana Arsenal near Charlestown in 1940.[6] Producing smokeless powder for the war effort, the arsenal employed up to 20,000. Howard shipyards was commissioned by the Navy to produce landing craft. Later Howard shipyards reorganized as Jeffersonville Boat and Machine Company (Jeffboat) — a current major employer (1991).[6]

When the war ended, the county experienced significant residential and commercial growth, aided by the 1956 Interstate Act. The improved access provided by Interstate 65 encouraged additional subdivisions and shopping centers.

View of Louisville from Clarksville

Clark County history has been closely associated with the development of the Ohio River. From its beginnings, Clark County relied on the river for economic opportunities. Clark County has diversified its economic base, lessened its dependency on the river, and continues to develop in new directions. However, the county still looks to the river as one link to its significant pioneer heritage.

Geography[edit]

Clark County lies on the east edge of Indiana; its eastern border abuts the northern border of the state of Kentucky (across the Ohio River). The terrain is low rolling hills, with the area either devoted to agriculture or urban development. The west part of the county is carved with drainages.[7] The highest point on the terrain is a ridge WNW of Henryville near the border with Scott County, at 1,030' (314m) ASL.[8]

According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 376.45 square miles (975.0 km2), of which 372.86 square miles (965.7 km2) (or 99.05%) is land and 3.60 square miles (9.3 km2) (or 0.96%) is water.[9]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Cities[edit]

Towns[edit]

Census-designated places[edit]

Unincorporated places[edit]

[10][11]

Extinct towns[edit]

Townships[edit]

Major highways[edit]

Airport[edit]

Climate and weather[edit]

Jeffersonville, Indiana
Climate chart (explanation)
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
 
 
3.3
 
 
41
25
 
 
3.3
 
 
47
29
 
 
4.4
 
 
57
37
 
 
3.9
 
 
67
46
 
 
4.9
 
 
75
56
 
 
3.8
 
 
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65
 
 
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87
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3.4
 
 
86
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3.1
 
 
79
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2.8
 
 
68
49
 
 
3.8
 
 
56
39
 
 
3.7
 
 
45
30
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[12]

In recent years, average temperatures in Jeffersonville have ranged from a low of 25 °F (−4 °C) in January to a high of 87 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −22 °F (−30 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 107 °F (42 °C) was recorded in July 1936. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 2.79 inches (71 mm) in October to 4.88 inches (124 mm) in May.[12]

Two towns in Clark County, Marysville and Henryville suffered major damage during the tornado outbreak of March 2–3, 2012.[13]

Government[edit]

For most of its history, Clark County was a Democratic-leaning county, its politics more in line with neighboring Kentucky than Indiana. However, the county voted for the national winner in all but 2 elections from 1924 to 2004 (1952, 1968). Since the start of the second millennium, the county has trended strongly Republican, moving away from its previous near-bellwether status.

The county government is a constitutional body, and is granted specific powers by the Constitution of Indiana, and by the Indiana Code.

County Council: The seven-member county council is the legislative branch of the county government and controls all the spending and revenue collection in the county. Four representatives are elected from county districts, and three are elected at large. The council members serve four-year terms. They are responsible for setting salaries, the annual budget, and special spending. The council also has limited authority to impose local taxes, in the form of an income and property tax that is subject to state level approval, excise taxes, and service taxes.[14][15]

Board of Commissioners: The executive body of the county is made of a board of commissioners. The commissioners are elected county-wide, in staggered terms, and each serves a four-year term. One of the commissioners, typically the most senior, serves as president. The commissioners are charged with executing the acts legislated by the council, collecting revenue, and managing the day-to-day functions of the county government.[14][15]

Courts: The Clark County Judicial System consists of 8 Courts:

Clark Circuit Court (Judge Daniel Moore) Clark Superior Court #1 (Judge Vicki Carmichael) Clark Superior Court #2 (Judge Jerome Jacobi) Clark Superior Court #3 (Judge Joe P. Weber) Jeffersonville City Court - Office Expired December 31, 2015 Charlestown City Court (Judge George Waters) Clarksville Town Court (Judge Samuel Gwin) Sellersburg Town Court (Judge Thomas Lowe)

By statute, the Circuit and Superior Courts have unlimited jurisdiction with the power to hear civil and criminal cases. City and Town Courts have jurisdiction to hear Ordinance violations and misdemeanor prosecutions, as well as civil actions where the amount in controversy does not exceed five hundred dollars ($500). Judgments in the City and Town Courts may be appealed de novo to the Clark Circuit Court. In addition, Clark Superior Court #3 maintains a Small Claims Docket. Local Rules of Practice may also limit the ability of a Court to hear certain cases. Judgments in other Courts may be appealed to the Indiana Court of appeals or the Indiana Supreme Court.

The Circuit and Superior Court Judges are assisted by 3 Magistrates, who are appointed and serve at the direction of the elected Judges.

The Circuit and Superior Court Judges are elected on a partisan basis, must reside within the county, and serve six-year terms. The City and Town Court Judges are elected to four-year terms on a partisan basis, and must reside within the City/Town.

Felony and Misdemeanor prosecutions are filed by the Prosecuting Attorney, who is elected on a partisan basis, must reside within the county, and serves a term of four years. The current Prosecuting Attorney, Steven D. Stewart, has been in Office since 1989.[15]

County Officials: The county has several other elected offices, including prosecuting attorney, sheriff, coroner, auditor, treasurer, recorder, surveyor, and circuit court clerk. These officers are elected to four-year terms. Members elected to county government positions must declare a party affiliation and be residents of the county.[15]

Elected county officials[edit]

Clark County is part of Indiana's 9th congressional district and is represented in Congress by Republican Trey Hollingsworth.;[16] Indiana Senate districts 45 and 46;[17] and Indiana House of Representatives districts 66, 70, 71, 72 and 73.[18]

The Clark County Council has 5 elected officials (as of May 2018). The Clark County Council of 2019 includes:

  • Barbara Hollis (District 1)
  • Janne Newland (District 2)
  • Brittney Ferree (District 3)
  • Steve Doherty (District 4)
  • David Abbott (At-Large)
  • John Miller (At-Large)
  • Kevin Vissing (At-Large)[19]
  • R. Scott Lewis (Attorney)

The three elected Clark County Commissioners are (as of 2019):

  • Jack Coffman
  • Connie Sellers
  • Bryan Glover[20]

Other county office holders as of 2019:

  • Prosecutor: Jeremy Mull
  • Sheriff: Jamey Noel
  • Clerk: Susan Popp
  • Auditor: Danny Yost
  • Treasurer: Monty Snelling
  • Recorder: Terry E. Conway
  • Assessor: Butch Love
  • Surveyor: David Blankenbeker[21]
United States presidential election results for Clark County, Indiana[22]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 33,668 58.18% 23,093 39.91% 1,108 1.91%
2016 30,035 57.99% 18,808 36.32% 2,946 5.69%
2012 25,450 53.83% 20,807 44.01% 1,021 2.16%
2008 25,326 52.89% 21,953 45.85% 605 1.26%
2004 24,495 57.86% 17,648 41.68% 194 0.46%
2000 19,417 52.01% 17,360 46.50% 559 1.50%
1996 14,396 40.08% 17,799 49.56% 3,721 10.36%
1992 13,333 36.34% 17,460 47.58% 5,901 16.08%
1988 16,544 53.04% 14,528 46.58% 120 0.38%
1984 19,419 57.48% 14,138 41.85% 228 0.67%
1980 15,508 49.74% 14,137 45.34% 1,536 4.93%
1976 12,732 42.82% 16,670 56.07% 329 1.11%
1972 16,111 59.42% 10,838 39.97% 164 0.60%
1968 10,305 38.33% 11,493 42.75% 5,088 18.92%
1964 7,701 30.61% 17,330 68.89% 125 0.50%
1960 12,803 46.89% 14,431 52.85% 70 0.26%
1956 12,483 51.09% 11,871 48.59% 79 0.32%
1952 11,190 48.60% 11,703 50.83% 132 0.57%
1948 7,001 38.57% 10,953 60.34% 199 1.10%
1944 7,241 42.39% 9,778 57.24% 62 0.36%
1940 6,044 40.02% 9,015 59.69% 45 0.30%
1936 5,536 34.83% 10,116 63.64% 244 1.53%
1932 5,881 37.89% 9,501 61.21% 140 0.90%
1928 8,056 56.39% 6,193 43.35% 36 0.25%
1924 5,944 51.70% 5,218 45.38% 336 2.92%
1920 6,466 48.41% 6,729 50.38% 162 1.21%
1916 3,173 46.15% 3,572 51.95% 131 1.91%
1912 805 11.88% 3,315 48.93% 2,655 39.19%
1908 3,706 46.56% 4,085 51.33% 168 2.11%
1904 3,644 48.79% 3,587 48.03% 237 3.17%
1900 3,855 47.78% 4,134 51.24% 79 0.98%
1896 3,897 50.23% 3,785 48.79% 76 0.98%
1892 3,280 44.23% 4,013 54.12% 122 1.65%
1888 3,206 45.52% 3,788 53.78% 49 0.70%


Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18105,670
18208,70953.6%
183010,68622.7%
184014,59536.6%
185015,8288.4%
186020,50229.5%
187024,77020.8%
188028,61015.5%
189030,2595.8%
190031,8355.2%
191030,260−4.9%
192029,381−2.9%
193030,7644.7%
194031,0200.8%
195048,33055.8%
196062,79529.9%
197075,87620.8%
198088,83817.1%
199087,774−1.2%
200096,4729.9%
2010110,23214.3%
2020121,0939.9%
US Decennial Census[23]
1790-1960[24] 1900-1990[25]
1990-2000[26] 2010-2019[27]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 110,232 people, 44,248 households, and 29,474 families in the county.[28] The population density was 295.6 inhabitants per square mile (114.1/km2). There were 47,776 housing units at an average density of 128.1 per square mile (49.5/km2).[9] The racial makeup of the county was 87.1% white, 6.9% black or African American, 0.8% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 2.6% from other races, and 2.2% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 4.9% of the population.[28] In terms of ancestry, 24.3% were German, 15.0% were Irish, 13.0% were American, and 9.8% were English.[29]

Of the 44,248 households, 32.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.4% were married couples living together, 12.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.4% were non-families, and 27.6% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.98. The median age was 37.9 years.[28]

The median income for a household in the county was $47,697 and the median income for a family was $58,090. Males had a median income of $43,053 versus $32,361 for females. The per capita income for the county was $23,592. About 9.0% of families and 11.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.9% of those under age 18 and 7.5% of those age 65 or over.[30]

Education[edit]

There are three public school districts and the Archdiocese of Indianapolis that serve Clark County. The county is also served by two colleges that offer associate and bachelor's degrees.

Public school districts[edit]

Clarksville Community School Corp.[31]

  • Clarksville Senior High School
  • Clarksville Middle School
  • Greenacres Elementary School
  • George Rogers Clark Elementary School (Closed 05/2010)

West Clark Community School Corp.[32]

Greater Clark County Schools[33]

  • Charlestown Senior High School
  • Jeffersonville High School
  • New Washington High School
  • Charlestown Middle School
  • New Washington Middle School
  • Parkview Middle School
  • River Valley Middle School
  • Bridgepoint Elementary School
  • Maple Elementary School
  • New Washington Elementary School
  • Northaven Elementary School
  • Parkwood Elementary School
  • Pleasant Ridge Elementary School
  • Jonathan Jennings Elementary School
  • Riverside Elementary School
  • Spring Hill Elementary School
  • Thomas Jefferson Elementary School
  • Utica Elementary School
  • Wilson Elementary School
  • Options Alternative School
  • Corden Porter School

Private schools[edit]

Archdiocese of Indianapolis

Colleges and universities[edit]

  • Ivy Tech State College (Non-profit)[38]
  • Mid-America College of Funeral Services (Non-profit)[39]
  • Ottawa University - Jeffersonville (Non-Profit)[40]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Clark County, Indiana". www.census.gov. Retrieved June 9, 2022.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. ^ a b [1] Clark County Genealogical Records (accessed 21 January 2008)
  4. ^ AniMap County Boundary Historical Atlas. (Gold Bug Software, Alamo, CA)
  5. ^ Salafia, Matthew (2013). Slavery's Borderland: Freedom and Bondage Along the Ohio River. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania. pp. 97–98. ISBN 978-0-8122-4521-9.
  6. ^ a b c d [2] Clark County Government - History (19 March 2013; accessed 19 November 2013)
  7. ^ [3] Clark County IN (google maps - accessed 21 December 2019)
  8. ^ Clark County IN (peakbagger.com - accessed 21 December 2019)
  9. ^ a b "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 12, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  10. ^ Clark County State Bank. "Clark County 1918 Indiana". historicmapworks.com. Historic Map Works. Retrieved September 7, 2014.
  11. ^ Clark County State Bank. "Clark County 1918 Indiana". mygenealogyhound.com. My Genealogy Hound. Retrieved October 15, 2015.
  12. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Jeffersonville IN". The Weather Channel. Retrieved January 27, 2011.
  13. ^ "The day in pictures - USATODAY.com Photos". Retrieved May 31, 2012.
  14. ^ a b Indiana Code. "Title 36, Article 2, Section 3". IN.gov. Retrieved September 16, 2008.
  15. ^ a b c d Indiana Code. "Title 2, Article 10, Section 2" (PDF). IN.gov. Retrieved September 16, 2008.
  16. ^ "Conressman Trey Hollingsworth". Retrieved November 19, 2017.
  17. ^ "Indiana Senate Districts". State of Indiana. Retrieved January 23, 2011.
  18. ^ "Indiana House Districts". State of Indiana. Retrieved January 23, 2011.
  19. ^ "Clark County Indiana County Council".
  20. ^ Clark County Commission (accessed 21 December 2019
  21. ^ Clark County Indiana Government (accessed 21 December 2019)
  22. ^ Leip, David. "Atlas of US Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved April 4, 2018.
  23. ^ "US Decennial Census". US Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  24. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  25. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". US Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  26. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). US Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  27. ^ "Clark County QuickFacts". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 24, 2016. Retrieved September 17, 2011.
  28. ^ a b c "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  29. ^ "Selected Social Characteristics in the US – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 14, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  30. ^ "Selected Economic Characteristics – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 14, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  31. ^ "Clarksville Community Schools". July 16, 2009. Archived from the original on December 16, 2007. Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  32. ^ "West Clark Community Schools". Archived from the original on October 29, 2008. Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  33. ^ "Greater Clark County Schools". Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  34. ^ "Welcome | Our Lady of Providence Junior-Senior High School". Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  35. ^ "Welcome to St. Anthony of Padua Catholic School in Clarksville IN". Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  36. ^ "Home". Archived from the original on February 23, 2009. Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  37. ^ "St. John Paul II Catholic School". October 12, 2006. Archived from the original on October 12, 2006. Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  38. ^ "Ivy Tech Community College". Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  39. ^ "Mid-America College of Funeral Service Education Mortuary Profession School - Jeffersonville IN". Retrieved September 21, 2009.
  40. ^ "Ottawa University". January 9, 2009. Retrieved September 21, 2009.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°29′N 85°43′W / 38.48°N 85.72°W / 38.48; -85.72