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Wapakoneta, Ohio
Auglaize County courthouse
Auglaize County courthouse
Official seal of Wapakoneta, Ohio
Seal
Nickname(s): 
Home of the First Man on the Moon, Home of Neil Armstrong, Moon City, Wapak
Location of Wapakoneta, Ohio
Location of Wapakoneta, Ohio
Location of Wapakoneta in Auglaize County
Location of Wapakoneta in Auglaize County
Wapakoneta, Ohio is located in the United States
Wapakoneta, Ohio
Wapakoneta, Ohio
Location in the United States
Country United States
State Ohio
County Auglaize
Founded 1782
Incorporated March 2, 1849
Area
 • Total 6.44 sq mi (16.69 km2)
 • Land 6.39 sq mi (16.56 km2)
 • Water 0.05 sq mi (0.13 km2)
Elevation
895 ft (272 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total 9,867
 • Estimate 
(2019)
9,698
 • Density 1,516.97/sq mi (585.75/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP codes
45895
Area code(s) 419, 567
FIPS code 39-80766
GNIS feature ID 1070980
Website http://www.wapakoneta.net

Wapakoneta, is a city in and the county seat of Auglaize County, Ohio, United States, about 56 miles (90 km) north of Dayton and 83 miles (134 km) south of Toledo. The population was 9,867 at the 2010 census. It is the principal city of and is included in the Wapakoneta, Ohio Micropolitan Area, which is included in the Lima–Van Wert–Wapakoneta, OH, Combined Statistical Area.

History

Wapakoneta was an important site to the Ottawa Native Americans prior to their leaving Ohio. By 1798, the Shawnee Native Americans had made Wapakoneta their territory and displaced the Ottawa. By 1808, there were reports of more than five hundred Shawnee, Seneca of the Iroquois, and Mingo Native Americans living at Wapakoneta, including Black Hoof. The name Wapakoneta is derived from Shawnee Wa·po’kanite 'Place of White Bones' (wa·pa 'white'+(h)o’kani 'bone'+-ite locative suffix).

The Native Americans of Wapakoneta adopted the agricultural methods that the missionaries from the Society of Friends had introduced to them. The Native Americans worked to prove that they had indeed adopted the life of the white settlers. Wapakoneta was the location of the first sawmill and gristmill in northwest Ohio. In 1810, the United States sent a government agent to help the Native Americans. This did not last since the federal government removed the agent for failing to submit appropriate paperwork.

The Shawnee and Seneca continued to live at Wapakoneta until the United States forced them to leave in 1831, as part of Indian Removal to lands west of the Mississippi River. The Treaty of Wapakoneta and the Treaty of Lewistown resulted in the forced removal of the Shawnees and Senecas to lands west of the Mississippi River.

Euro-American settlers quickly replaced the native population. In 1848, the Ohio legislature created Auglaize County out of parts of Mercer and Allen counties. Early county voters chose Wapakoneta as the county seat in a disputed contest with rival town Saint Marys. For the next 150 years, Auglaize County residents primarily were devoted to agriculture, although several additional industries existed in the city by the late nineteenth century. During the 1880s, an oil and natural gas drilling industry arose. Wapakoneta's 2,765 residents also claimed to produce more butter churns than any other single location in the United States during this same time period.

In 2000, more than nine thousand people called Wapakoneta home. Many residents find employment at General Aluminum, Wapakoneta City Schools, Koneta Rubber Co. and companies outside Wapakoneta proper. It was mentioned in the movie Third Finger, Left Hand as the hometown of character Jeff Thompson, who repeatedly got strange looks when he would say where he was from. Wapakoneta has seen many business additions in the last several years, including Walmart, Lowes, and local restaurant chain Happy Daz.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.26 square miles (16.21 km2), of which 6.21 square miles (16.08 km2) is land and 0.05 square miles (0.13 km2) is water.

Wapakoneta is located on the Auglaize River and includes portions of Duchouquet, Pusheta, and Moulton Townships.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 504
1860 900 78.6%
1870 2,150 138.9%
1880 2,705 25.8%
1890 3,616 33.7%
1900 3,915 8.3%
1910 5,349 36.6%
1920 5,295 −1.0%
1930 5,378 1.6%
1940 5,225 −2.8%
1950 5,797 10.9%
1960 6,756 16.5%
1970 7,324 8.4%
1980 8,402 14.7%
1990 9,214 9.7%
2000 9,474 2.8%
2010 9,867 4.1%
2019 (est.) 9,698 −1.7%
Sources:

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 9,867 people, 4,037 households, and 2,614 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,588.9 inhabitants per square mile (613.5/km2). There were 4,332 housing units at an average density of 697.6 per square mile (269.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.1% White, 0.4% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.4% Asian, 0.6% from other races, and 1.2% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.6% of the population.

There were 4,037 households, of which 32.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.7% were married couples living together, 12.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.2% were non-families. 30.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.39 and the average family size was 2.95.

The median age in the city was 37 years. 25.2% of residents were under the age of 18; 8.6% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 26% were from 25 to 44; 24.4% were from 45 to 64; and 15.6% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.8% male and 52.2% female.

Sister cities

Wapakoneta has one sister city, as designated by the Sister Cities International:

Wapakoneta-ohio-courthouse
Auglaize County courthouse

Education

Wapakoneta is home to Wapakoneta High School. The city has a public library, the main branch of the Auglaize County Public Library.

Notable people

  • Neil Armstrong, NASA Gemini 8/Apollo 11 astronaut, first man on the Moon
  • Charles Brading, pharmacist and politician
  • Kent Boyd, dancer, runner-up SYTYCD
  • Jennifer Crusie, romance novel writer
  • George Russell Davis, Associate Justice of the Arizona Territorial Supreme Court
  • Bob Ewing, Major League Baseball player
  • Dan Newland, journalist, translator, and writer

8{{ Robert S. Henderson Author, Poet, Jungian Psychotherapist, Author

Wapakoneta is Armstrong's birthplace, and has several places named after him, such as the Armstrong Air and Space Museum, operated by the Ohio Historical Society, and Neil Armstrong Airport.

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