Jasper, Indiana

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Not to be confused with Jasper County, Indiana.
Jasper, Indiana
Dubois County courthouse located on the square in Jasper, Indiana
Nickname(s): "The Nation's Wood Capital"
Jasper's location in Dubois County (left)  and the state of Indiana (right).
Jasper's location in Dubois County (left)
and the state of Indiana (right).
Coordinates: 38°23′29″N 86°55′51″W / 38.39139°N 86.93083°W / 38.39139; -86.93083Coordinates: 38°23′29″N 86°55′51″W / 38.39139°N 86.93083°W / 38.39139; -86.93083
Country United StatesUnited States
State IndianaIndiana
County Dubois
Township Bainbridge
Founded 1818
 • Mayor Terry R. Seitz (R) (Jan. 2012 - present)
 • Total 13.20 sq mi (34.19 km2)
 • Land 13.11 sq mi (33.95 km2)
 • Water 0.09 sq mi (0.23 km2)
Elevation[2] 466 ft (142 m)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 15,038
 • Estimate (2014[4]) 15,325
 • Density 1,147.1/sq mi (442.9/km2)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 47546, 47547, 47549
Area code 812 & 930
FIPS code 18-37782[5]
GNIS feature ID 436944
Website http://www.jasperindiana.gov

Jasper is a city in, and the county seat[6] of Bainbridge Township, Dubois County, Indiana, United States, located along the Patoka River. The population was 15,038 at the 2010 census making it the 55th largest city in Indiana. On November 4, 2007, Dubois County returned to the Eastern Time Zone, after having moved to the Central Time Zone the previous year. The land uses are mainly agriculture.

Jasper is a regional center in Southwestern Indiana, noted for its heavily German Catholic ancestral roots.[7] Jasper has often been called the "Wood Capital of the World", boasting a large number of furniture companies, including Kimball International and Masterbrand Cabinets. Jasper is also home to the Southern Indiana Education Center (SIEC), Jasper Engines & Transmissions (largest re-manufacturer in the market), and to a satellite campus of Vincennes University.

The Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame, which honors players and others associated with the national pastime who were born or lived in Indiana, is located in Jasper.

Jasper also boasts the only municipally supported Arts Council in the state of Indiana; it is part of city government and is supported by the city for its citizens in the same vein as its park board or its street department. The city of Jasper and the Jasper Community Arts Commission have won the Governor's Arts Award twice, once in 1987 and again in 2007, and it is the only group to have garnered this award twice.[8]


Jasper was founded in 1818.[9] The Enlow family were the first settlers of the town.[10] Jasper was originally going to be called Eleanor, the wife of settler Joseph Enlow, but she opted to suggest a name herself, and named the city after a passage in the Bible (Revelations 21:19).[11]

Jasper was not officially platted until 1830.[12] That year, the community became the new county seat of Dubois County, succeeding Portersville.[13]

The Jasper post office has been in operation since 1832.[14]

Jasper was incorporated as a town in 1866, and was incorporated into a city in 1915.[15]

Town Recognition[edit]

  • Jasper was previously ranked in the top 25 in Norman Crampton's 1992 book 100 Best Small Towns in America.[citation needed]
  • In 2005, Jasper was ranked in the ten best places to live in the U.S. by Relocate America.[16]
  • In 2014, movoto.com ranked Jasper fifth on their "10 Best Cities to Live in Indiana" list.[17]
  • A 2014 report by safewise.com placed Jasper 8th on the "50 Safest Cities in Indiana" rankings.[18]
  • According to a study done by NerdWallet.com, Jasper is 9th on the "Best Places to Start a Business in Indiana" list.[19]


The largest industry sectors by employment in Jasper are manufacturing, retail, and health care & social services.

Top Employers[edit]

According to the Jasper Chamber of Commerce

# Employer # of Employees
1 Kimball International 3,400
2 MasterBrand Cabinets 2,440
3 Jasper Engines & Transmissions 1,500
4 Memorial Hospital 1,400
5 Jasper Rubber Products 800
6 JasperGroup 800
Location of the Jasper Micropolitan Statistical Area in Indiana


Jasper is located at 38°23′29″N 86°55′51″W / 38.39139°N 86.93083°W / 38.39139; -86.93083 (38.391439, -86.930772),[20] and is roughly:

According to the 2010 census, Jasper has a total area of 13.191 square miles (34.16 km2), of which 13.1 square miles (33.93 km2) (or 99.31%) is land and 0.091 square miles (0.24 km2) (or 0.69%) is water.[1] City limits extend from Bainbridge Township into Madison and Boone Townships.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1870 547
1880 1,040 90.1%
1890 1,281 23.2%
1900 1,863 45.4%
1910 2,196 17.9%
1920 2,539 15.6%
1930 3,905 53.8%
1940 5,041 29.1%
1950 5,215 3.5%
1960 6,737 29.2%
1970 8,641 28.3%
1980 9,097 5.3%
1990 10,030 10.3%
2000 12,100 20.6%
2010 15,038 24.3%
Est. 2015 15,451 [21] 2.7%
Source: US Census Bureau

Jasper is the principal city of the Jasper Micropolitan Statistical Area, a micropolitan area that covers Dubois and Pike counties[22] and had a combined population of 54,734 at the 2010 census.[5]

2010 census[edit]

As of the census[3] of 2010, the population of Jasper was 15,038 and there were 5,994 households. The gender makeup of the city is 49.2% male and 50.8% female.


The racial makeup of the city was:


Of the total Jasper population:

  • 14.0% were 1-9
  • 12.9% were 10-19
  • 12.1% were 20-29
  • 11.9% were 30-39
  • 14.4% were 40-49
  • 13.6% were 50-59
  • 9.1% were 60-69
  • 6.1% were 70-79
  • 5.4% were 80 or older
  • Median age was 39.3 years. For males it was 36.9 years and for females, 41.6 years.


  • Overall median household income in Jasper is $53,968
  • Median income for a family is $65,903
  • Males had a median income of $37,432
  • Females had a median income of $32,218
  • The per capita income for the city is $28,540
  • About 5.7% of families and 7.6% of the population are below the poverty line, including 8.2% of those under age 18 and 3.9% of those age 65 and over.

Sister City[edit]

Jasper participates in the sister cities program, as designated by Sister Cities International, Inc. (SCI).[23]

Arts and culture[edit]

The Jasper Strassenfest is a four-day event held annually during the first weekend in August. The "Fest" is a celebration between Jasper and its German sister-city Pfaffenweiler, a small village in southwest Germany. Many citizens of Pfaffenweiler travel to Jasper around this time of year. The street festival encompasses the entire city square, complete with numerous food stands, rides, and a very large Biergarten. On average, over 1,300 pounds of bratwurst are consumed during the four-day event.[citation needed] The Strassenfest culminates in a Sunday parade and evening fireworks. The festival also incorporates a golf tournament, beauty pageant (Miss Strassenfest), box parade, fishing tournament, and a network of German "Polka Masses" at the three Roman Catholic parishes: St. Joseph's, Holy Family, and Precious Blood.



Jasper has had several newspapers during its history.

  • The American Eagle was the town's first newspaper, and operated 1846–1848.
  • The Jasper Weekly Courier, a Democratic newspaper, was one of the longest running newspapers in the town's history, serving Dubois County residents 1858–1921.[24]
  • The Dubois County Herald has been published from 1895 to the present and circulates over 11,300 copies per day to residents of Dubois, Spencer, and Pike counties. The Herald is one of only 300 independently owned newspapers in the United States.[25]

Other newspapers published in Jasper included the Democrat (1857), the Times (1865), and another Times (1879–1891).[26]


The following stations are licensed in the city of Jasper


Notable people[edit]

National Register of Historic Places[edit]

St. Joseph Catholic Church

There are 12 Dubois County locations or buildings listed on the NRHS with 5 being in Jasper.


Front entrance to Jasper High School

In 1970, the school system of Ireland, an unincorporated town west of Jasper along State Route 56, was consolidated into that of Jasper.

  • Vincennes University (Jasper Campus)[27]
  • Jasper High School (Public 9-12)
  • Jasper Middle School (Public 6-8)[28]
  • Ireland Elementary School (Public PreK-5)[29]
  • Tenth Street School (Public 3-5)[30]
  • Fifth Street School (Public PreK-2)[31]
  • Holy Trinity Catholic School[32]
  • Holy Family School (Catholic 3-8)[33]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2015-07-28. 
  2. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved 2016-07-05. 
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2015-07-09. 
  4. ^ "Annual Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau American Fact Finder. Retrieved 2015-07-07. 
  5. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  6. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  7. ^ Wilson, George R. (1910). History of Dubois County from Its Primitive Days to 1910. Windmill Publications. p. 356. 
  8. ^ "IAC: Governor's Arts Awards - Past Recipients". 
  9. ^ "Jasper, Indiana". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2016-11-04. 
  10. ^ "History". Jasper Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved November 4, 2016. 
  11. ^ Wilson, George R. (1910). History of Dubois County from Its Primitive Days to 1910. p. 161. 
  12. ^ Wilson, George R. (1910). History of Dubois County from Its Primitive Days to 1910. p. 160. 
  13. ^ "Portersville History". Retrieved November 4, 2016. 
  14. ^ "Dubois County". Jim Forte Postal History. Retrieved December 11, 2016. 
  15. ^ "About Our City". Retrieved November 4, 2016. 
  16. ^ "Relocate-America Announces 2005 'America's Top 100 Places to Live' List". Free Republic. Retrieved 4 September 2014. 
  17. ^ "These Are The 10 Best Places To Live In Indiana". 
  18. ^ "50 Safest Cities in Indiana - SafeWise". 
  19. ^ "Best Places to Start a Business in Indiana". 6 July 2015. 
  20. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  21. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015". Retrieved July 2, 2016. 
  22. ^ MICROPOLITAN STATISTICAL AREAS AND COMPONENTS, Office of Management and Budget, 2007-05-11. Accessed 2008-07-27.
  23. ^ "Sister Cities International". Retrieved 2006-11-20. 
  24. ^ "A history of the Jasper Weekly Courier from Indiana Historic Newspaper Digitization blog". 
  25. ^ "About us - Dubois County Herald". 
  26. ^ Miller, John W. (1982). Indiana Newspaper Bibliography. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society. 
  27. ^ http://vujc.vinu.edu/
  28. ^ "Jasper Middle School". 
  29. ^ "Ireland Elementary". 
  30. ^ "Tenth Street Elementary". 
  31. ^ "Fifth Street Elementary". 
  32. ^ "Holy Trinity Catholic School". 
  33. ^ "Holy Family School". 

External links[edit]

Media related to Jasper, Indiana at Wikimedia Commons