Ripley County, Missouri: Wikis

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Ripley County, Missouri
Map of Missouri highlighting Ripley County
Location in the state of Missouri
Map of the U.S. highlighting Missouri
Missouri's location in the U.S.
Seat Doniphan
Largest city Doniphan
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

632 sq mi (1,636 km²)
629 sq mi (1,630 km²)
2 sq mi (6 km²), 0.35
PopulationEst.
 - (2008)
 - Density

13,485
22/sq mi (8/km²)
Founded 1833
Named for Eleazer Wheelock Ripley, a soldier in the War of 1812
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Website www.ripleycountymissouri.org/

Ripley County is a county located in the Ozarks of Southeast Missouri in the United States. As of the 2000 U.S. Census, the county's population was 13,509. A 2008 estimate, however, showed the population to be 13,485. The largest city and county seat is Doniphan[1]. The county was officially organized on January 5, 1833, and is named after Brigadier General Eleazar Wheelock Ripley, a soldier who fought in the War of 1812. The original area encompassed what would later become Oregon, Howell, Shannon and Carter counties. The historic Natchitoches Trail passes through Ripley County. It was a Native American trail and early route to the Southwest, used by pioneers like Stephen Austin. Although a no-man's land during the American Civil War, Ripley county was pro-South and provided four colonels for the Confederate cause. Today's tourist areas include Current River and the Mark Twain National Forest.

Contents

History

Located deep in the rugged, wooded hills of Southern Missouri, the area now included within the boundaries of Ripley County remained sparsely settled throughout the 19th Century. Although officially organized in 1833, the county did not assume its present size until 1872.

When Congress created the Territory of Missouri in 1812, what eventually became Ripley County laid within New Madrid County. Three years later, Lawrence County was established, which included all of southern Missouri west of the St. Francis River as well as a portion of northern Arkansas. The seat of justice for Lawrence County was located at Davidsonville in present-day Arkansas. The administrative configuration of southern Missouri changed again in 1818 with the creation of Wayne County. This massive county included nearly one-fifth of the area lying within the Missouri Territory, of which Greenville became the county seat.

In 1833 the General Assembly established Ripley County from a portion of Wayne County. At its creation, the county included the area comprising present-day Ripley, Carter, Shannon, Oregon, and Howell Counties, with Van Buren as the county seat. Over the next 26 years, Ripley County’s boundaries decreased as new counties were formed-Shannon (1841); Oregon, which include today’s Oregon and Howell Counties (1845); and Carter (1859). The last boundary adjustment occurred in 1872.

Because most of the population was in the southern half of the county, voters decided to move the county seat to the newly platted Doniphan, nearer to the center of population and a wooden courthouse was built. This building served the county until Union troops burned it, and most of Doniphan, in 1864. Fortunately, William Russell, a county official, had earlier removed the county's record books from the courthouse and placed them in a cave south of town. They remained hidden until they were retrieved by the county clerk in 1867.

Because of the chaos and destruction brought about by the Civil War, Ripley Countians did not replace the courthouse until 1871. A two-story brick courthouse resulted from the $10,000 bond passed by the county's citizens and housed the administrative offices until destroyed by fire in January 1898.

Ripley County's current courthouse was designed by William F. Schrage of Kansas City and was built in 1898-1899. A central tower, later destroyed during a 1929 tornado, dominated the two-story brick structure. Federal relief workers undertook some repairs and renovations of the courthouse during the 1930s. Not until an extensive remodeling project completed in the 1970s, however, was central heating incorporated into the building. The century-old courthouse is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places and celebrated its centennial during the 1999 Labor Day Homecoming Festivities.

Education

Of adults 25 years of age and older in Ripley County, 62.1% possesses a high school diploma or higher while 7.8% holds a bachelor's degree or higher as their highest educational attainment.

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Public Schools

Private Schools

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 632 square miles (1,636 km²), of which, 629 square miles (1,630 km²) of it is land and 2 square miles (6 km²) of it (0.35%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

National protected area

Demographics

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 13,509 people, 5,416 households, and 3,845 families residing in the county. The population density was 22 people per square mile (8/km²). There were 6,392 housing units at an average density of 10 per square mile (4/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.17% White, 0.04% Black or African American, 1.33% Native American, 0.22% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.05% from other races, and 1.17% from two or more races. Approximately 0.98% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. The major first ancestries reported in Ripley County were 34.1% American, 14.0% Irish, 11.6% German and 10.7% English, according to Census 2000.

There were 5,416 households out of which 30.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.40% were married couples living together, 9.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.00% were non-families. 25.90% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.95.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.80% under the age of 18, 7.90% from 18 to 24, 25.30% from 25 to 44, 24.70% from 45 to 64, and 17.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 94.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.10 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $27,285, and the median income for a family was $33,101. Males had a median income of $22,056 versus $17,823 for females. The per capita income for the county was $15,251. About 16.90% of families and 22.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.00% of those under age 18 and 20.40% of those age 65 or over.

At the end of 2008, the unemployment rate in Ripley County was 6.4%.

Cities and towns

Politics

Local

Politics at the local level in Ripley County is controlled by the Democratic Party. Slightly more than half of Ripley County's elected officeholders are Democrats.

Office Incumbent Party
Assessor Jan Spencer Democratic
Circuit Clerk Sharon R. Richmond Republican
Clerk Betty York Democratic
Collector Jerry Martin Democratic
Commissioner – Eastern District David Johnson Democratic
Commissioner – Western District Jerry Halley Democratic
Coroner Mike Jackson Democratic
Presiding Commissioner William D. Kennon, Jr. Republican
Prosecuting Attorney Christopher J. Miller Democratic
Public Administrator Brenda Emmons-Thompson Republican
Recorder June Watson Democratic
Sheriff Ron Barnett Republican
Surveyor William “Troy” Ayers Republican
Treasurer Terry L. Slayton Republican

State

Past Gubernatorial Elections Results
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2008 47.09% 2,499 49.75% 2,640 3.17% 168
2004 59.85% 3,332 38.37% 2,136 1.78% 99
2000 53.19% 2,651 44.36% 2,211 2.45% 122
1996 38.80% 1,801 58.97% 2,738 2.24% 104

Ripley County is a part of Missouri’s 153rd Legislative District and is currently represented in the Missouri House of Representatives by Rep. Mike Dethrow (R-Alton). Dethrow ran unopposed in 2008 and was reelected with 100% of the total vote.

Ripley County is also a part of Missouri's 25th Senatorial District and is currently represented by State Senator Rob Mayer (R-Dexter). In 2008, Mayer defeated Shane M. Stoelting (D) by an almost two-to-one margin, 65.32-34.68 percent. Ripley County backed Mayer with 67.95 percent while Stoelting received 32.05 percent. The 25th Senatorial District consists of Butler, Dunklin, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Ripley, Stoddard, and Wayne counties.

In Missouri's gubernatorial election of 2008, Governor of Missouri Jay Nixon (D) defeated former U.S. Representative Kenny Hulshof with 58.40 percent of the total statewide vote. Nixon performed extremely well and won many of the rural counties in the state, including Ripley County. The former attorney general Nixon carried Ripley County with 49.75 percent of the vote to Hulshof’s 47.09 percent.

Federal

In the U.S. House of Representatives, Ripley County is represented by Jo Ann Emerson (R-Cape Girardeau) who represents all of Southeast Missouri as part of Missouri's 8th Congressional District.

Political Culture

Past Presidential Elections Results
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2008 63.53% 3,407 33.47% 1,795 3.01% 161
2004 65.33% 3,693 33.73% 1,907 0.94% 53
2000 61.62% 3,121 35.93% 1,820 2.45% 124
1996 42.68% 1,988 44.68% 2,081 12.64% 589

At the presidential level, Ripley County is fairly independent-leaning; however, like many rural counties, it does have a slight Republican lean. While George W. Bush carried Ripley County by two-to-one margins in 2000 and 2004, Bill Clinton won the county both times in 1992 and 1996. Like most of the rural counties in Missouri, Ripley County favored John McCain over Barack Obama in 2008.

Like most rural areas throughout Southeast Missouri, voters in Ripley County generally adhere to socially and culturally conservative principles which tend to influence their Republican leanings. In 2004, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman—it overwhelmingly passed Ripley County with 89.06 percent of the vote. The initiative passed the state with 71 percent of support from voters as Missouri became the first state to ban same-sex marriage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to fund and legalize embryonic stem cell research in the state—it failed in Ripley County with 57.39 percent voting against the measure. The initiative narrowly passed the state with 51 percent of support from voters as Missouri became one of the first states in the nation to approve embryonic stem cell research. Despite Ripley County’s longstanding tradition of supporting socially conservative platforms, voters in the county have a penchant for advancing populist causes like increasing the minimum wage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a proposition (Proposition B) to increase the minimum wage in the state to $6.50 an hour—it passed Ripley County with 75.08 percent of the vote. The proposition strongly passed every single county in Missouri with 75.94 percent voting in favor as the minimum wage was increased to $6.50 an hour in the state. During the same election, voters in five other states also strongly approved increases in the minimum wage.

2008 Missouri Presidential Primary

In the 2008 Missouri Presidential Primary, voters in Ripley County from both political parties supported candidates who finished in second place in the state at large and nationally.

Republican

Former Governor Mike Huckabee (R-Arkansas) won Ripley County with 53.84 percent of the vote. U.S. Senator John McCain (R-Arizona) finished in second place in Ripley County with 23.62 percent. Former Governor Mitt Romney (R-Massachusetts) came in third place, receiving 17.09 percent of the vote while libertarian-leaning U.S. Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) finished fourth with 3.73 percent in Ripley County.

Huckabee slightly led Missouri throughout much of the evening until the precincts began reporting from St. Louis where McCain won and put him over the top of Huckabee. In the end, McCain received 32.95 percent of the vote to Huckabee’s 31.53 percent—a 1.42 percent difference. McCain received all of Missouri’s 58 delegates as the Republican Party utilizes the winner-take-all system.

Democratic

Former U.S. Senator and now Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-New York) picked up one of her largest wins in Missouri in Ripley County over now President Barack Obama (D-Illinois). Clinton carried Ripley County with 74.20 percent of the vote while Obama only received 19.50 percent of the vote. Although he withdrew from the race, former U.S. Senator John Edwards (D-North Carolina) still received 4.98 percent of the vote in Ripley County.

Clinton had a large initial lead in Missouri at the beginning of the evening as the rural precincts began to report, leading several news organizations to call the state for her; however, Obama rallied from behind as the heavily African American precincts from St. Louis began to report and eventually put him over the top. In the end, Obama received 49.32 percent of the vote to Clinton’s 47.90 percent—a 1.42 percent difference. Both candidates split Missouri’s 72 delegates as the Democratic Party utilizes proportional representation.

  • Ripley County gave Hillary Rodham Clinton her fifth strongest showing in the Missouri Democratic Primary of 2008; she only did better in Dunklin, Wayne, Washington, and Carter counties. Also, she received more votes, a total of 1,073, than any candidate from either party in Ripley County during the 2008 Missouri Presidential Primaries.

References

  1. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. http://www.naco.org/Template.cfm?Section=Find_a_County&Template=/cffiles/counties/usamap.cfm. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  
  2. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  

Coordinates: 36°40′N 90°52′W / 36.66°N 90.87°W / 36.66; -90.87


Genealogy

Up to date as of February 01, 2010

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Ripley County, Missouri
Map
File:Map of Missouri highlighting Ripley County.png
Location in the state of Missouri
Map of the USA highlighting Missouri
Missouri's location in the USA
Statistics
Founded 1833
Seat Doniphan
Largest City Doniphan
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

 sq mikm²)
 sq mi ( km²)
 sq mi ( km²), 0.35%
wikipedia:Population
 - (2000)
 - Density

13509
Time zone Central : UTC-6/-5
Named for: Eleazer Wheelock Ripley, Brigadier General in the War of 1812

Ripley County is a county located in the U.S. state of Missouri. As of 2000, the population is 13,509. Its county seat is Doniphan6. The county was organized in 1833 and named for Gen. Eleazar Wheelock Ripley, hero of the War of 1812. Its area encompassed what would later become Oregon, Howell, Shannon and Carter counties. The historic Natchitoches Trail passes through Ripley County. It was an Indian trail and an early route to the Southwest, used by pioneers like Stephen Austin. Although a no-man's land during the American Civil War, the county was pro-south and provided four colonels for the Confederate cause. Today's tourist areas include Current River and the Mark Twain National Forest.

Contents

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,636 km² (632 sq mi). 1,630 km² (629 sq mi) of it is land and 6 km² (2 sq mi) of it (0.35%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

Demographics

As of the census2 of 2000, there were 13,509 people, 5,416 households, and 3,845 families residing in the county. The population density was 8/km² (22/sq mi). There were 6,392 housing units at an average density of 4/km² (10/sq mi). The racial makeup of the county was 97.17% White, 0.04% Black or African American, 1.33% Native American, 0.22% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.05% from other races, and 1.17% from two or more races. 0.98% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 34.1% were of American, 14.0% Irish, 11.6% German and 10.7% English ancestry according to Census 2000.

There were 5,416 households out of which 30.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.40% were married couples living together, 9.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.00% were non-families. 25.90% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.95.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.80% under the age of 18, 7.90% from 18 to 24, 25.30% from 25 to 44, 24.70% from 45 to 64, and 17.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 94.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.10 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $22,761, and the median income for a family was $27,799. Males had a median income of $22,056 versus $17,823 for females. The per capita income for the county was $12,889. About 16.90% of families and 22.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.00% of those under age 18 and 20.40% of those age 65 or over.

Cities and towns


Coordinates: 36°40′N 90°52′W / 36.66, -90.87

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Ripley County, Missouri. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.
Facts about Ripley County, MissouriRDF feed
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County of subdivision1 Missouri  +
Short name Ripley County  +

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