Springfield, Oregon facts for kids
Quick facts for kids
Springfield as seen from the Mount Pisgah, looking north, with some of Eugene in the west
"Proud History, Bright Future."
Location in Oregon
|• Total||15.75 sq mi (40.79 km2)|
|• Land||15.74 sq mi (40.77 km2)|
|• Water||0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)|
|Elevation||454 ft (138.4 m)|
| • Estimate
|• Density||3,774.0/sq mi (1,457.1/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-8 (Pacific)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-7 (Pacific)|
97475, 97477, 97478, 97482
|Area code(s)||458 and 541|
|GNIS feature ID||1127456|
|Website||City of Springfield|
Springfield is a city in Lane County, Oregon, United States. Located in the Southern Willamette Valley, it is within the Eugene-Springfield Metropolitan Statistical Area. Separated from Eugene to the west, mainly by Interstate 5, Springfield is the second-most populous city in the metropolitan area after Eugene. As of the 2010 census, the city has a total population of 59,403.
The Briggs family first settled the Springfield area, arriving in 1848. The community was incorporated as a city in 1885. The city was named after a natural spring located in a field or prairie within the current city boundaries. Traditionally the economy of the community was resource dependent, but since the 1990s the economy has diversified with PeaceHealth now the largest employer in the city. Public education in the city is provided by the Springfield School District.
Springfield was settled when Elias and Mary Briggs and their family arrived in 1848. They were among the first party to travel to the region via the "Southern Route" by Klamath Lake, over the Cascades, into the Rogue Valley, then north to the Willamette Valley. Elias Briggs along with William Stevens ran a ferry on the nearby Willamette River.
According to donation land claim records, Stevens was the first settler to stake a claim in the Springfield locale, arriving in October 1847. He commenced building a house with his three oldest sons, and when the house was completed in December, the rest of his family joined him on Christmas Day that year.
Another early arrival in the Springfield vicinity was Captain Felix Scott, Sr. who settled between the McKenzie and Willamette rivers in 1847.
In 1854 Springfield School District No. 19 was formed. A small schoolhouse was built near the corner of south 7th and B streets; it served the community until the 1880s. Miss Agnes Stewart, a young woman from Pennsylvania, was the first teacher. She had arrived in Springfield via the Lost Wagon Train of 1853.
In 1871 the main line of the Oregon and California Railroad bypassed Springfield for Eugene. The story goes that a group of prominent Eugene businessmen paid railroad financier, Ben Holladay, $40,000 to bypass Springfield by crossing the Willamette River near Harrisburg instead of Springfield. Thus began a rivalry that lasts up to the present day.
Springfield was incorporated as a city in 1885. Albert Walker, a blacksmith in town, was Springfield's first mayor.
In May 1992 the municipality became the first in the United States to include anti-gay legislation in its city charter after a campaign by the Oregon Citizens Alliance. However, the state legislature later passed a law that prevented anti-gay ordinances from being enforced.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.75 square miles (40.79 km2), of which, 15.74 square miles (40.77 km2) is land and 0.01 square miles (0.03 km2) is water.
The McKenzie River passes by Springfield's northern limits.
Springfield does not have any official neighborhood designations. Unofficial neighborhood areas include:
- North Springfield
- Washburne Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places
As of the census of 2010, there were 59,403 people, 23,665 households, and 14,737 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,774.0 inhabitants per square mile (1,457.1/km2). There were 24,809 housing units at an average density of 1,576.2 per square mile (608.6/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 85.9% White, 1.1% African American, 1.4% Native American, 1.3% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 5.2% from other races, and 4.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 12.1% of the population.
There were 23,665 households of which 33.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.9% were married couples living together, 15.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 37.7% were non-families. 27.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 3.00.
The median age in the city was 34.5 years. 24.3% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.1% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 29% were from 25 to 44; 25% were from 45 to 64; and 11.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.0% male and 51.0% female.
Arts and culture
Author Ken Kesey moved to Springfield when he was young and graduated from Springfield High School before moving on to the nearby University of Oregon. After some years of wandering (described in The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe), Kesey bought a farm in nearby Pleasant Hill and remained a prominent local celebrity until his death in 2001.
The Springfield Public Library is located within city hall.
The Richard E. Wildish Community Theater on Main Street in downtown Springfield, a complete renovation of the historic McKenzie Theater, opened in December 2006. The theater seats 284 people and is designed to host music concerts and recitals, dance, drama, festivals and small musicals. The Springfield Renaissance Development Corporation spearheaded the six-year renovation project, completed at a cost of $3.1 million.
In popular culture
The city took third in the voting to choose one of the sixteen possible Springfields in the U.S. to host the premiere of The Simpsons Movie. The show's creator, Oregon resident Matt Groening, sent a plaque to the city of Springfield that stated, in part "Yo to Springfield, Oregon – the real Springfield." In April 2012, Groening confirmed to Smithsonian magazine that he named the fictional Springfield after Springfield, Oregon. He also confirmed that he intentionally left it a secret to allow people the enjoyment of assuming it was based on their own Springfield.
This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Springfield has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated "Csb" on climate maps.
Springfield, Oregon Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.