Lafayette County, Missouri

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Lafayette County
Lafayette County Courthouse in Lexington
Map of Missouri highlighting Lafayette County
Location within the U.S. state of Missouri
Map of the United States highlighting Missouri
Missouri's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 39°04′N 93°47′W / 39.06°N 93.78°W / 39.06; -93.78
Country United States
State Missouri
FoundedNovember 16, 1820
Named forMarquis de La Fayette
SeatLexington
Largest cityOdessa
Area
 • Total639 sq mi (1,660 km2)
 • Land628 sq mi (1,630 km2)
 • Water11 sq mi (30 km2)  1.6%
Population
 (2010)
 • Total33,381
 • Estimate 
(2018)
32,598
 • Density52/sq mi (20/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district5th
Websitewww.lafayettecountymo.com

Lafayette County is a county in the western portion of Missouri, part of the Kansas City metropolitan area.[1] As of the 2010 census, the population was 33,381.[2] Its county seat is Lexington.[3] The county was organized November 16, 1820 from Cooper County and originally named Lillard County for James Lillard of Tennessee, who served in the first state constitutional convention and first state legislature.[4] It was renamed Lafayette County on February 16, 1825, in honor of Revolutionary War hero the Marquis de La Fayette, who was then visiting the United States.[5]

History[edit]

Lafayette County was settled primarily from migrants from the Upper Southern states of Kentucky, Tennessee and Virginia. They brought enslaved people and slaveholding traditions and started cultivating crops similar to those in Middle Tennessee and Kentucky: hemp and tobacco.

Peter Youree (1843-1914) was born here to merchant P. E. Youree and the former M. M. Zimmerman. As a young man, he enlisted in the Confederate forces from here, and gained the rank of captain during the American Civil War. Afterward, he settled in Shreveport, Louisiana, where he married, became a successful merchant and banker, and served on the Caddo Parish Police Jury.

As a result of the migration from the South, this part of Missouri, and neighboring counties, became known as Little Dixie. In 1860 enslaved people made up 25 percent or more of the county's population, and the county was strongly pro-Confederate during the American Civil War.[6]

But immigrants from Germany, as well as German Americans from St. Louis, began arriving shortly before the war, with many more to come afterwards. Many of the Germans were sympathetic to the Union and opposed slavery. They eventually made up a large part of the populations of Concordia, Emma, Wellington, Napoleon, Higginsville, Mayview, and Lexington.

After the war, there were racial tensions as whites worked to dominate the freedmen. Following Reconstruction, whites lynched two blacks in the decades around the turn of the century.

Sunday May 4th 1919, Lafayette County Sheriff Joseph C. Talbott was killed while transporting car thieves to jail.  Also killed were Deputy Sheriff John McDonald and Deputy Constable James Stapleton.  On May 29th 1919, Lafayette County held a special election to replace Sheriff Talbott.  Sheriff Talbott's wife, Minnie Mae Talbott, won the special election becoming the first woman elected to the office of Sheriff in the United States.  Minnie Mae Talbott was sworn into office on June 8th 1919.  Minnie Mae Talbott was elected by an all-male electorate.  Women would not gain the right to vote until August 1920, with ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

21st century[edit]

In November 2013, Leland Ray Kolkmeyer pleaded guilty, in federal court, of a fraud scheme in which he embezzled more than $1.5 million from Wellington-Napoleon Fire Protection District and Special Road District while serving as their treasurer.[7][8][9]

Geography[edit]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 639 square miles (1,660 km2), of which 628 square miles (1,630 km2) is land and 11 square miles (28 km2) (1.6%) is water.[10]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Major highways[edit]

National protected area[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18302,912
18406,815134.0%
185013,690100.9%
186020,09846.8%
187022,62312.6%
188025,71013.6%
189030,18417.4%
190031,6795.0%
191030,154−4.8%
192030,006−0.5%
193029,259−2.5%
194027,856−4.8%
195025,272−9.3%
196025,2740.0%
197026,6265.3%
198029,92512.4%
199031,1073.9%
200032,9606.0%
201033,3811.3%
202032,984−1.2%
U.S. Decennial Census[11]
1790-1960[12] 1900-1990[13]
1990-2000[14] 2010-2015[2]

As of the census[15] of 2000, there were 32,960 people, 12,569 households, and 9,099 families residing in the county. The population density was 52 people per square mile (20/km2). There were 13,707 housing units at an average density of 22 per square mile (8/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 95.52% White, 2.27% Black or African American, 0.29% Native American, 0.25% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.51% from other races, and 1.12% from two or more races. Approximately 1.17% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 37.3% were of German, 17.5% American, 9.9% English and 9.7% Irish ancestry.

There were 12,569 households, out of which 33.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.30% were married couples living together, 9.40% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.60% were non-families. 24.00% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.01.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 26.20% under the age of 18, 7.60% from 18 to 24, 27.50% from 25 to 44, 23.30% from 45 to 64, and 15.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 95.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $38,235, and the median income for a family was $45,717. Males had a median income of $31,972 versus $22,684 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,493. About 6.90% of families and 8.80% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.90% of those under age 18 and 9.10% of those ages 65 or over.

2020 Census[edit]

Lafayette County Racial Composition[16]
Race Num. Perc.
White (NH) 29,256 88.7%
Black or African American (NH) 671 2%
Native American (NH) 138 0.42%
Asian (NH) 115 0.35%
Pacific Islander (NH) 12 0.04%
Other/Mixed (NH) 1,745 5.3%
Hispanic or Latino 1,047 3.2%

Education[edit]

Public schools[edit]

Private schools[edit]

Public Libraries[edit]

  • Robertson Memorial Library[17]
  • Trails Regional Library[18]

Politics[edit]

Local[edit]

The Republican Party mostly controls politics at the local level in Lafayette County. Republicans hold a little more than half of the elected positions in the county.

Lafayette County, Missouri
Elected countywide officials
Assessor Chip Langman Democratic
Circuit Clerk Deana Aversman Republican
County Clerk Linda Niendick Republican
Collector Lori Fiegenbaum Democratic
Commissioner
(Presiding)
Harold Hoflander Republican
Commissioner
(District 1)
Craig Williams Republican
Commissioner
(District 2)
Tracy Dyer Republican
Coroner David Pulliam Republican
Prosecuting Attorney Kristen Ellis Democratic
Public Administrator Barb Copenhaver Republican
Recorder JoAnn Swartz Republican
Sheriff Kerrick Alumbaugh Republican
Surveyor Mark Nolte Republican
Treasurer Jennifer Jellum Republican

State[edit]

Past Gubernatorial Elections Results
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2016 57.85% 9,167 38.47% 6,097 3.68% 583
2012 47.91% 7,537 49.31% 7,758 2.78% 438
2008 42.70% 7,022 55.09% 9,060 2.21% 364
2004 52.97% 8,541 45.59% 7,351 1.43% 231
2000 50.32% 7,276 47.94% 6,932 1.74% 251
1996 34.00% 4,450 63.05% 8,252 2.94% 385

Lafayette County is divided into two legislative districts in the Missouri House of Representatives, both of which are held by Republicans.

Missouri House of Representatives — District 33 — Lafayette County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Donna Pfautsch 51 72.86% -2.81
Democratic Chase Linder 19 27.14% +19.03
Missouri House of Representatives — District 33 — Lafayette County (2014)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Donna Pfautsch 28 75.67% +10.96
Democratic Syed Asif 3 8.11% -27.18
Libertarian Matt Stephens 6 16.22% +16.22
Missouri House of Representatives — District 33 — Lafayette County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Donna Pfautsch 33 64.71%
Democratic Ron Harvey 18 35.29%
Missouri House of Representatives — District 53 — Lafayette County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Glen Kolkmeyer 13,719 100.00% +38.93
Missouri House of Representatives — District 53 — Lafayette County (2014)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Glen Kolkmeyer 5,818 61.07% +2.43
Democratic Henry Grubb 3,709 38.93% -2.43
Missouri House of Representatives — District 53 — Lafayette County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Glen Kolkmeyer 9,095 58.64%
Democratic Holmes Osborne 6,416 41.36%

All of Lafayette County is a part of Missouri's 21st District in the Missouri Senate and is currently represented by Denny Hoskins (R-Warrensburg).

Missouri Senate — District 21 — Lafayette County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Denny Hoskins 9,738 63.36% +1.36
Democratic ElGene Ver Dught 4,864 31.65% -2.80
Libertarian Bill Wayne 768 5.00% -1.45
Missouri Senate — District 21 — Lafayette County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican David Pearce 9,547 62.00%
Democratic ElGene Ver Dught 5,305 34.45%
Libertarian Steven Hedrick 547 3.55%

Federal[edit]

U.S. Senate — Missouri — Lafayette County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Roy Blunt 8,812 55.55% +12.89
Democratic Jason Kander 6,150 38.77% -10.49
Libertarian Jonathan Dine 436 2.75% -5.33
Green Johnathan McFarland 167 1.05% +1.05
Constitution Fred Ryman 299 1.88% +1.88
U.S. Senate — Missouri — Lafayette County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Todd Akin 6,663 42.66%
Democratic Claire McCaskill 7,695 49.26%
Libertarian Jonathan Dine 1,262 8.08%

All of Lafayette County is included in Missouri's 5th Congressional District, which is currently represented by Emanuel Cleaver (D-Kansas City) in the U.S. House of Representatives.

U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri's 5th Congressional District — Lafayette County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Emanuel Cleaver II 5,744 36.50% +3.58
Republican Jacob Turk 9,505 60.39% -3.58
Libertarian Roy Welborn 490 3.11%
U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri's 5th Congressional District — Lafayette County (2014)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Emanuel Cleaver II 3,153 32.92% -6.74
Republican Jacob Turk 6,128 63.97% +6.90
Libertarian Roy Welborn 298 3.11% -0.16
U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri’s 5th Congressional District — Lafayette County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Emanuel Cleaver II 6,202 39.66%
Republican Jacob Turk 8,925 57.07%
Libertarian Randy Langkraehr 511 3.27%


United States presidential election results for Lafayette County, Missouri[19]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 12,273 71.79% 4,472 26.16% 351 2.05%
2016 10,988 68.78% 4,053 25.37% 934 5.85%
2012 9,803 61.79% 5,655 35.64% 408 2.57%
2008 9,442 56.88% 6,902 41.58% 256 1.54%
2004 9,656 59.67% 6,412 39.62% 114 0.70%
2000 7,849 54.06% 6,343 43.68% 328 2.26%
1996 5,489 41.57% 6,118 46.34% 1,596 12.09%
1992 4,651 34.54% 5,213 38.71% 3,603 26.75%
1988 6,825 54.54% 5,654 45.18% 35 0.28%
1984 8,581 63.90% 4,848 36.10% 0 0.00%
1980 7,271 53.99% 5,792 43.01% 405 3.01%
1976 6,823 51.28% 6,410 48.18% 72 0.54%
1972 9,187 69.34% 4,063 30.66% 0 0.00%
1968 6,840 53.42% 4,859 37.95% 1,105 8.63%
1964 5,493 42.60% 7,400 57.40% 0 0.00%
1960 8,011 59.05% 5,555 40.95% 0 0.00%
1956 8,133 57.22% 6,081 42.78% 0 0.00%
1952 8,805 59.26% 6,020 40.52% 32 0.22%
1948 6,634 52.48% 5,988 47.37% 20 0.16%
1944 7,951 58.63% 5,603 41.32% 7 0.05%
1940 8,802 55.91% 6,913 43.91% 29 0.18%
1936 7,535 50.70% 7,275 48.95% 51 0.34%
1932 5,670 41.65% 7,906 58.08% 37 0.27%
1928 7,687 56.28% 5,939 43.48% 32 0.23%
1924 6,517 50.43% 5,877 45.48% 529 4.09%
1920 7,471 54.40% 6,169 44.92% 94 0.68%
1916 4,049 49.09% 4,073 49.38% 126 1.53%
1912 2,367 31.73% 3,650 48.93% 1,442 19.33%
1908 3,771 48.57% 3,865 49.78% 128 1.65%
1904 3,531 48.82% 3,583 49.54% 119 1.65%
1900 3,311 43.40% 4,217 55.28% 101 1.32%
1896 3,375 42.72% 4,463 56.49% 63 0.80%
1892 2,833 40.33% 3,922 55.83% 270 3.84%
1888 2,819 41.27% 3,865 56.59% 146 2.14%


Communities[edit]

Cities and towns[edit]

Unincorporated communities[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Population Data and Maps | MARC".
  2. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  4. ^ "Disappearing Missouri Names". The Kansas City Star. March 19, 1911. p. 15. Retrieved August 15, 2014 – via Newspapers.com. open access
  5. ^ Eaton, David Wolfe (1916). How Missouri Counties, Towns and Streams Were Named. The State Historical Society of Missouri. pp. 183.
  6. ^ T. J. Stiles, Jesse James: The Last Rebel of the Civil War, New York: Vintage Books, 2003, pp. 10-11
  7. ^ "Public servant steals $1.5 million from two tiny towns in Missouri"; The Kansas City Star; 22 November 2013
  8. ^ "Treasurer admits to embezzling over $1 million from small towns’ funds:; Fox4KC; November 22, 2013.]
  9. ^ Treasurer for road district and fire district pleads guilty to embezzling $1.5 million; justice.gov; November 20, 2013.
  10. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on September 13, 2014. Retrieved November 16, 2014.
  11. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved November 16, 2014.
  12. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved November 16, 2014.
  13. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved November 16, 2014.
  14. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved November 16, 2014.
  15. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  16. ^ "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE – 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) – Lafayette County, Missouri".
  17. ^ Breeding, Marshall. "Robertson Memorial Library". Libraries.org. Retrieved May 8, 2017.
  18. ^ Breeding, Marshall. "Trails Regional Library". Libraries.org. Retrieved May 8, 2017.
  19. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved March 25, 2018.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°04′N 93°47′W / 39.06°N 93.78°W / 39.06; -93.78