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Ponca, Nebraska
The downtown Ponca Historic District is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
The downtown Ponca Historic District is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Motto(s): 
"A Great Place To Visit, A Better Place To Live"
Location within Dixon County (left) and Nebraska (right)
Location within Dixon County (left) and Nebraska (right)
Country United States
State Nebraska
County Dixon
Established 1856
Incorporated 1871
Area
 • Total 0.76 sq mi (1.96 km2)
 • Land 0.76 sq mi (1.96 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
Elevation
1,148 ft (350 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 961
 • Estimate 
(2019)
912
 • Density 1,203.17/sq mi (464.76/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
68770
Area code(s) 402
FIPS code 31-39695
GNIS feature ID 0832300

Ponca is a city and county seat of Dixon County, Nebraska, United States. The population was 961 at the 2010 census.

History

Ponca was established in 1856 and is Nebraska’s fourth oldest town. It was named for the Ponca Indian tribe native to the region. Ponca was incorporated as a village in 1871.

Ponca experienced growth when the Covington, Columbus and Black Hills Railroad was extended to it in 1876.

Geography

Ponca is located at 42°33′50″N 96°42′38″W / 42.56389°N 96.71056°W / 42.56389; -96.71056 (42.563964, -96.710563).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.73 square miles (1.89 km2), all of it land.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 594
1890 1,009 69.9%
1900 1,043 3.4%
1910 1,000 −4.1%
1920 1,014 1.4%
1930 920 −9.3%
1940 1,003 9.0%
1950 893 −11.0%
1960 924 3.5%
1970 984 6.5%
1980 1,057 7.4%
1990 877 −17.0%
2000 1,062 21.1%
2010 961 −9.5%
2019 (est.) 912 −5.1%
U.S. Decennial Census

Ponca is part of the Sioux City, IA–NE–SD Metropolitan Statistical Area.

2010 census

At the 2010 census there were 961 people in 403 households, including 256 families, in the city. The population density was 1,316.4 inhabitants per square mile (508.3/km2). There were 428 housing units at an average density of 586.3 per square mile (226.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.8% White, 0.4% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.1% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.8%.

Of the 403 households 30.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.9% were married couples living together, 8.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 36.5% were non-families. 32.8% of households were one person and 19.1% were one person aged 65 or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.88.

The median age was 43.9 years. 24.3% of residents were under the age of 18; 6.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 21% were from 25 to 44; 27.1% were from 45 to 64; and 21.5% were 65 or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.1% male and 50.9% female.

Parks and recreation

Ponca State Park is two miles north of the city. The park is located on the heavily forested high bluffs and steep hills along the Nebraska banks of the Missouri River. Ponca State Park is the eastern terminus for float trips through the federally designated National Wild and Scenic River.

Notable people

  • Tommy Atkins, Baseball player
  • Pug Bennett, Baseball player
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