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Jasper, Indiana
City
Evensmallerjasperindianacourthouseonsquarewiki
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).
Country United StatesUnited States
State IndianaIndiana
County Dubois
Township Bainbridge
Founded 1818
Area
 • 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 466 ft (142 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 15,038
 • Estimate (2014) 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
GNIS feature ID 436944
Website http://www.jasperindiana.gov

Jasper is a city in, and the county seat 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. 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.

History

Jasper was founded in 1818. The Enlow family were the first settlers of the town. 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).

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

The Jasper post office has been in operation since 1832. During the New Deal era, Jessie Hull Mayer won a federal commission to paint a mural as part of the Section of Painting and Sculpture′s projects, later called the Section of Fine Arts, of the Treasury Department. Indiana Farming Scene in Late Autumn depicts a harvest scene on a farmstead, with no indication of the town. In 1975, the painting was featured as part of a film, Art for Main Street: The Indiana Post Office Murals, produced by the Indiana Historical Society.

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

Town Recognition

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

Geography

Jasper is located at (38.391439, -86.930772), 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. City limits extend from Bainbridge Township into Madison and Boone Townships.

Demographics

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 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 and had a combined population of 54,734 at the 2010 census.

2010 census

As of the census 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.

Ethnicities

The racial makeup of the city was:

  • 93.6% white
  • 7.7% Hispanic
  • 0.4% Black
  • 0.9% Asian
  • 0.2% Native American
  • 4.0% from other races
  • 0.9% from two or more races.

Age

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.

Income

  • 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

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

Arts and culture

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. 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.

National Register of Historic Places

St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Jasper
St. Joseph Catholic Church

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

  • Dubois County Courthouse
  • Gramelspacher-Gutzweiler House
  • John Opel House
  • St. Joseph Catholic Church
  • Louis H. Sturm Hardware Store


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