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Decatur, Indiana
Decatur downtown in 2006.
Decatur downtown in 2006.
Location of Decatur in Adams County
Location of Decatur in Adams County
Country United States
State Indiana
County Adams
Township Root, Washington
Government
 • Type Mayor-council government
Area
 • Total 6.11 sq mi (15.81 km2)
 • Land 6.10 sq mi (15.80 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.02 km2)
Elevation
801 ft (244 m)
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 9,913
 • Density 1,625.08/sq mi (627.50/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
46733
Area code(s) 260
FIPS code 18-17074
GNIS feature ID 0446543
Website http://www.decaturin.org/
Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 231
1860 532 130.3%
1870 858 61.3%
1880 1,905 122.0%
1890 3,142 64.9%
1900 4,148 32.0%
1910 4,471 7.8%
1920 4,762 6.5%
1930 5,156 8.3%
1940 5,861 13.7%
1950 7,271 24.1%
1960 8,327 14.5%
1970 8,445 1.4%
1980 8,649 2.4%
1990 8,644 −0.1%
2000 9,528 10.2%
2010 9,405 −1.3%
2020 9,913 5.4%
US Decennial Census

Decatur is a city in Root and Washington townships, Adams County, Indiana, United States. It is the county seat (and the largest community) of Adams County. Decatur is home to Adams Memorial Hospital, which was designated as one of the "Top 100" Critical Access Hospitals in the United States. The population of Decatur was 9,913 at the 2020 census.

History

The first non-Native American settlers arrived in what is now Decatur in 1835. They arrived as a result of the end of the Black Hawk War as well as the completion of the Erie Canal. They consisted entirely of settlers from New England. These were "Yankee" settlers, that is to say they were descended from the English Puritans who settled New England in the colonial era. They were primarily members of the Congregational Church though due to the Second Great Awakening many of them had converted to Methodism and some had become Baptists before coming to what is now Decatur. The Congregational Church subsequently has gone through many divisions and some factions are now known as the Church of Christ and Church of God. When the New England settlers arrived in what is now Decatur there was nothing but a dense virgin forest and wild prairie.

Decatur was founded in 1836. It was named for Stephen Decatur, Jr., one of the captains of the original six frigates of the US navy. The first post office in Decatur was established in 1837.

Geography

Decatur is located at 40°49′46″N 84°55′45″W / 40.82944°N 84.92917°W / 40.82944; -84.92917 (40.829581, -84.929185).

According to the 2010 census, Decatur has a total area of 5.786 square miles (14.99 km2), of which 5.78 square miles (14.97 km2) (or 99.9%) is land and 0.006 square miles (0.02 km2) (or 0.1%) is water.

Demographics

2020 census

As of the 2020 Census there were 9,913 people and 4,278 households. The population density was 1,713.2 people per square mile (747.7/km2). There were 4,572 housing units at an average density of 851.1 per square mile (328.8/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 91.1% White, 7.3% Hispanic or Latino, 1.2% African American, 0.1% Native American or Alaska Native, and 0.5% from two or more races. 96.1% speak English and 3.4% speak Spanish at home. All residents of Decatur were citizens. The ancestral background of most residents was 33.3% German, 7.1% English, and 6.9% Irish.

The average age for Decatur residents was 40.5 years. Of the total population, 6.8% were veterans and 15.8% have a visible or non-visible disability. An estimated 4.6% of residents are uninsured.

Of the 4,278 households, 30.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.8% were married couples living together, 35% had a female householder with no spouse present, and 27.3% of the residents were never married. The average household size was 2.24.

The median income for a household in the city was $45,149, and the median income for a family was $58,542. The per capita income for the city was $23,059. Additionally, 13.9% of the population were below the poverty line, a 57.4% difference from the 2020 census. This includes 15.4% of those under age 18 and 5.2% of those age 65 or over. There was a total of 4,572 housing units, with 64.3% being owned by residents and 12.5% being rented.

Of the total residents of Decatur, 43.9% have a high school or equivalent degree and 12.9 have a bachelor's degree or higher. The latter is 70% lower than the state average. The majority of residents work in manufacturing (37.4%), education, social services and health care (14.2%) and retail (13.6%).

Only 76.3% of residents had broadband internet access, in contrast to 80.1% of state residents.

Economy

Some of the larger employers in Decatur include Bunge Limited, Rev RV, and Thunderbird Products also known as Formula Boats, Arnold Lumber. Locally established restaurants and bars in Decatur include 224 Pub & Grill, Back 40 Junction, The Galley, Two Brothers Bar and Restaurant, the West End Restaurant, Vinnie's Bar, River View Tavern, The Wet Spot, Double Eagle Clubhouse Grille, Famous Monster Pizza, Soul Pig BBQ, and Small Town Bar & Grill Lingenfelter Performance Engineering, well known for performance tuning and producing after-market parts for GM sports cars especially the Chevrolet Corvette is located in Decatur.

Adams County IN Court House 1935
Adams County courthouse, Decatur, Indiana, 1935

Education

The local high school in Decatur is Bellmont High School; approximately 700 students attend BHS. Local elementary and middle school students attend Bellmont Elementary School and Bellmont Middle School. St. Joseph Catholic School serves students in grades K-8. Zion Lutheran School, Wyneken Memorial Lutheran School, and St. Peter-Immanuel Lutheran School also serve students in grades PK-8.

Decatur has a public library, a branch of the Adams Public Library System.

Notable people

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