Lawrence County, Indiana

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Lawrence County, Indiana
Location in the state of Indiana
Location in the state of Indiana
Indiana's location in the U.S.
Indiana's location in the U.S.
Coordinates: 38°48′N 86°33′W / 38.800°N 86.550°W / 38.800; -86.550Coordinates: 38°48′N 86°33′W / 38.800°N 86.550°W / 38.800; -86.550
Country United States
State Indiana
Founded1818
Named forJames Lawrence
County seatBedford
Largest cityBedford (population and area)
Incorporated
Municipalities
Three Cities and Towns
Government
 • TypeCounty
 • BodyBoard of Commissioners
Area
 • Total451.93 sq mi (1,170.5 km2)
 • Land449.17 sq mi (1,163.3 km2)
 • Water2.76 sq mi (7.1 km2)
 • Rank20th largest county in Indiana
Elevation502 ft (153 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total46,134
 • Estimate 
(2018)
45,668
 • Rank31st largest county in Indiana
1,050th largest county in U.S.[2]
 • Density103/sq mi (40/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (Eastern)
ZIP Codes
47264, 47420-21, 47436-37, 47446, 47451, 47462, 47467, 47470
Area code812 and 930
Congressional district9th
Indiana Senate district44th
Indiana House of Representatives districts65th and 73rd
FIPS code18-093
GNIS feature ID0451703
  • Indiana county number 47

Lawrence County is a county located in the U.S. state of Indiana. As of 2010, the population was 46,134.[3] The county seat is Bedford.[4] Lawrence County comprises the Bedford, IN Micropolitan Statistical Area.

History[edit]

Until the Battle of Tippecanoe, the general area of Lawrence County was populated primarily by Native Americans. The first trace of white settlement in Lawrence County was near Leesville; however, Bono was the first white settlement in the county.[5] Lawrence County was formed in 1818 by subdividing Orange County.[6] The English name refers to Captain James Lawrence,[7] who uttered the famous words "Don't give up the ship." after being mortally wounded during the War of 1812. Prior to Lawrence County's creation, it was organized as "Leatherwood Township." On March 11, 1818, the county commissioners Ambrose Carlton, Thomas Beagley, and James Stotts, met at the home of James Gregory. On the third day of this session, the commissioners proceeded to divide the county into two civil townships: Shawswick and Spice Valley.[8][9] Early in 1819, the board adopted a seal for Lawrence County, which was designed with a harp, a plow, three sheaves of weat, a pair of scales, and a weathercock on top. The first county seat of Lawrence County was located at Palestine, situated on a high bluff near the East Fork of the White River. 276 lots were laid out in Palestine, which were advertised for sale on May 25, 1818. Steps were immediately taken to build a courthouse and a jail. The first courthouse of the county was log and erected in the spring of 1818. This courthouse was temporary, and steps to construct a permanent courthouse began in November 1818. It was first designed in octagonal form, with brick walls, a stone foundation, with 45 windows and to be two stories tall. The courthouse was finished in the autumn of 1821, at a total cost of $5,500 (1821 USD).[10] After much disease, and a tornado that swept through the area in 1820, the county approved the relocation of the county seat on February 9, 1825. The name "Bedford" was selected for the new county seat by Joseph Rawlins, a local businessman, after Bedford County, Virginia. The town was laid out on March 30, 1825, and current residents of Palestine were offered a lot in Bedford. The county records were hauled from Palestine to Bedford by Richard Evans.[11][12] In early 1825, a temporary log courthouse was erected at Bedford. In 1831, the board of commissioners took up the matter of building a more suitable courthouse and advertised bids for a courthouse similar to the one at Salem in May, and there obtained complete plans of that structure. The old buildings at Palestine were sold, and the proceeds were to be used in the construction of the new building. The building was finished in May 1834. A fourth courthouse was built in 1872. The fifth and current courthouse was built in 1930.[13] Perry Township was created in May 1822, and Indian Creek Township was extended south to the river. Around the same time, Flinn Township was created. On January 23, 1826, Marion Township was created, followed by Marshall Township in June 1855. In March 1866, 180 residents petitioned for a new township, called "Morton", to be formed out of Shawswick, Bono, and Flinn, but after much thought was named Guthrie Township after an old pioneer family of the county. On January 1, 1911, Flinn Township was annexed by Shawswick, Guthrie, and Pleasant Run Townships, after the county commissioners meeting a month prior.[14]

Geography[edit]

According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 451.93 square miles (1,170.5 km2), of which 449.17 square miles (1,163.3 km2) (or 99.39%) is land and 2.76 square miles (7.1 km2) (or 0.61%) is water.[15]

Adjacent counties[edit]

Major highways[edit]

National protected area[edit]

Municipalities[edit]

Cities and Towns[edit]

Census-designated places[edit]

Unincorporated communities[edit]

Former communities[edit]

  • Armstrong
  • Beck's
  • Bottomville
  • Burton
  • Caseyville
  • Cross Lanes
  • Dark Hollow
  • Deal
  • Dixonville
  • Dodd
  • Dog Fennel
  • Fairview
  • Fishing Creek
  • Five Points
  • Flatwood Hollow
  • Genoda
  • Goat Run
  • Goosetown
  • Grayson
  • Grindstone Hollow
  • Heathen Bend
  • Hog Holler
  • Horseshoe Bend
  • Jones' Defeat
  • Jugtown
  • Kentucky Hollow
  • Leatherwood
  • Liberty
  • Lickskillet
  • Lookout
  • Marysville
  • Maul Ridge
  • Miles Standish
  • Morgiana
  • Opposition
  • Palestine
  • Pattonville
  • Paul
  • Reed's Station
  • Rockledge
  • Sand Pit
  • Scottville
  • Sinking Spring
  • Speed Hollow
  • Stringtown
  • Sunset
  • Torphytown
  • Wolf Creek[16][17]

Townships[edit]

Local sights[edit]

Astronauts[edit]

Lawrence County has had several native residents that have become astronauts over the years. They include:

The Virgil I. Gus Grissom Memorial, located at the Spring Mill State Park near Mitchell, has many mementos of his career, including the space capsule he commanded, "The Molly Brown" from Gemini 3.[18]

Climate and weather[edit]

Bedford, Indiana
Climate chart (explanation)
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
 
 
2.8
 
 
37
18
 
 
2.7
 
 
43
22
 
 
3.8
 
 
53
31
 
 
4.5
 
 
64
40
 
 
5
 
 
74
51
 
 
4.1
 
 
82
60
 
 
4.5
 
 
86
64
 
 
4.2
 
 
85
62
 
 
3.1
 
 
79
53
 
 
3.2
 
 
67
41
 
 
3.9
 
 
54
33
 
 
3.3
 
 
42
23
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[19]

In recent years, average temperatures in Bedford have ranged from a low of 18 °F (−8 °C) in January to a high of 86 °F (30 °C) in July, although a record low of −29 °F (−34 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 111 °F (44 °C) was recorded in July 1930. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 2.70 inches (69 mm) in February to 5.04 inches (128 mm) in May.[19]

Government[edit]

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 county council is the legislative branch of the county government and controls all the spending and revenue collection in the county. Representatives are elected from county districts. 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.[20][21]

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.[20][21]

Court: The county maintains a small claims court that can handle some civil cases. The judge on the court is elected to a term of four years and must be a member of the Indiana Bar Association. The judge is assisted by a constable who is also elected to a four-year term. In some cases, court decisions can be appealed to the state level circuit court.[21]

County Officials: The county has several other elected offices, including sheriff, coroner, auditor, treasurer, recorder, surveyor, and circuit court clerk Each of these elected officers serves a term of four years and oversees a different part of county government. Members elected to county government positions are required to declare party affiliations and to be residents of the county.[21]

Lawrence County is part of Indiana's 9th congressional district; Indiana Senate district 44;[22] and Indiana House of Representatives districts 65 and 73.[23]

United States presidential election results for Lawrence County, Indiana[24][25]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 15,601 74.20% 4,961 23.60% 463 2.20%
2016 14,035 73.28% 4,210 21.98% 907 4.74%
2012 11,622 65.04% 5,779 32.34% 469 2.62%
2008 11,018 59.45% 7,208 38.89% 308 1.66%
2004 12,207 68.97% 5,346 30.21% 145 0.82%
2000 10,677 66.14% 5,071 31.41% 394 2.44%
1996 8,107 50.64% 5,703 35.62% 2,199 13.74%
1992 7,712 45.96% 5,557 33.11% 3,512 20.93%
1988 10,742 64.71% 5,787 34.86% 70 0.42%
1984 11,440 66.71% 5,608 32.70% 102 0.59%
1980 10,846 62.71% 5,826 33.68% 624 3.61%
1976 9,278 53.20% 7,908 45.34% 254 1.46%
1972 10,936 71.55% 4,278 27.99% 70 0.46%
1968 8,830 54.35% 5,349 32.92% 2,069 12.73%
1964 8,186 48.28% 8,677 51.17% 93 0.55%
1960 11,119 61.15% 6,977 38.37% 86 0.47%
1956 11,090 63.93% 6,197 35.73% 59 0.34%
1952 11,296 64.64% 6,044 34.59% 135 0.77%
1948 8,643 58.13% 6,131 41.23% 95 0.64%
1944 9,200 63.38% 5,246 36.14% 69 0.48%
1940 10,717 61.92% 6,553 37.86% 38 0.22%
1936 9,982 54.91% 8,062 44.35% 134 0.74%
1932 8,314 49.66% 8,215 49.07% 212 1.27%
1928 9,844 68.70% 4,428 30.90% 57 0.40%
1924 7,438 60.70% 4,414 36.02% 402 3.28%
1920 6,808 58.15% 4,709 40.22% 191 1.63%
1916 3,813 52.55% 3,108 42.83% 335 4.62%
1912 1,633 23.87% 2,579 37.70% 2,628 38.42%
1908 3,884 53.77% 3,118 43.16% 222 3.07%
1904 3,924 57.93% 2,672 39.44% 178 2.63%
1900 3,535 57.07% 2,558 41.30% 101 1.63%
1896 3,103 55.70% 2,421 43.46% 47 0.84%
1892 2,529 52.11% 2,134 43.97% 190 3.92%
1888 2,256 55.24% 1,814 44.42% 14 0.34%


Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18204,116
18309,234124.3%
184011,78227.6%
185012,0972.7%
186013,69213.2%
187014,6286.8%
188018,54326.8%
189019,7926.7%
190025,72930.0%
191030,62519.0%
192028,228−7.8%
193035,58326.1%
194035,045−1.5%
195034,346−2.0%
196036,5646.5%
197038,0384.0%
198042,47211.7%
199042,8360.9%
200045,9227.2%
201046,1340.5%
202045,011−2.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[26]
1790-1960[27] 1900-1990[28]
1990-2000[29] 2010-2013[3]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 46,134 people, 18,811 households, and 12,906 families residing in the county.[30] The population density was 102.7 inhabitants per square mile (39.7/km2). There were 21,074 housing units at an average density of 46.9 per square mile (18.1/km2).[15] The racial makeup of the county was 97.3% white, 0.5% Asian, 0.4% black or African American, 0.3% American Indian, 0.3% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.2% of the population.[30] In terms of ancestry, 18.4% were German, 14.6% were Irish, 13.1% were American, and 10.4% were English.[31]

Of the 18,811 households, 31.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.1% were married couples living together, 10.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 31.4% were non-families, and 27.3% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.92. The median age was 41.6 years.[30]

The median income for a household in the county was $47,697 and the median income for a family was $50,355. Males had a median income of $42,337 versus $30,386 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,352. About 10.9% of families and 15.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 23.4% of those under age 18 and 10.6% of those age 65 or over.[32]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Lawrence County". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey, United States Department of the Interior.
  2. ^ "USA Counties in Profile". STATS Indiana. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Lawrence County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  4. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  5. ^ "History of Lawrence County, Indiana". INGenWeb. Retrieved July 26, 2016.
  6. ^ History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties, Indiana: Their People, Industries, and Institutions. B.F. Bowen. 1914. p. 64.
  7. ^ History of Lawrence, Orange, and Washington Counties, Indiana: From the Earliest Time to the Present, Together with Interesting Biographical Sketches, Reminiscences, Notes, Etc. Higginson Book Company. 1884. p. 34.
  8. ^ "Lawrence County's Bicentennial". Limestone County. August 20, 2018. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  9. ^ History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties, Indiana: Their People, Industries, and Institutions. B.F. Bowen. 1914. p. 66.
  10. ^ History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties, Indiana: Their People, Industries, and Institutions. B.F. Bowen. 1914. p. 77-79.
  11. ^ History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties, Indiana: Their People, Industries, and Institutions. B.F. Bowen. 1914. p. 73-75.
  12. ^ Buher, Becky. "Bedford was second county seat". Hoosier Times. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  13. ^ History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties, Indiana: Their People, Industries, and Institutions. B.F. Bowen. 1914. p. 79-80.
  14. ^ History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties, Indiana: Their People, Industries, and Institutions. B.F. Bowen. 1914. p. 67-70.
  15. ^ a b "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 12, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  16. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on September 3, 2020. Retrieved December 26, 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  17. ^ "Lawrence County Indiana INGenWeb | newspaper articles April 24, 1856". Ingenweb.org. October 31, 1997. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  18. ^ http://www.roadsideamerica.com/story/9780 , Virgil I. Gus Grissom Memorial
  19. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Bedford, Indiana". The Weather Channel. Retrieved January 27, 2011.
  20. ^ a b Indiana Code. "Title 36, Article 2, Section 3". IN.gov. Retrieved September 16, 2008.
  21. ^ a b c d Indiana Code. "Title 2, Article 10, Section 2" (PDF). IN.gov. Retrieved September 16, 2008.
  22. ^ "Indiana Senate Districts" (PDF). State of Indiana. Retrieved January 19, 2015.
  23. ^ "Indiana House Districts" (PDF). State of Indiana. Retrieved January 19, 2015.
  24. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved May 18, 2018.
  25. ^ The leading "other" candidate, Progressive Theodore Roosevelt, received 2,106 votes, while Socialist candidate Eugene Debs received 398 votes, Prohibition candidate Eugene Chafin received 91 votes, and Socialist Labor candidate Arthur Reimer received 33 votes.
  26. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  27. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  28. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  29. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014.
  30. ^ a b c "DP-1 Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  31. ^ "DP02 SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 14, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.
  32. ^ "DP03 SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 14, 2020. Retrieved July 10, 2015.

External links[edit]