Belpre, Ohio

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Belpre, Ohio
Belpre's oldest house, built in 1799
Belpre's oldest house, built in 1799
Motto(s): 
" Excellent Community Excellent People "
Location of Belpre, Ohio
Location of Belpre, Ohio
Location of Belpre in Washington County
Location of Belpre in Washington County
Coordinates: 39°16′49″N 81°35′6″W / 39.28028°N 81.58500°W / 39.28028; -81.58500Coordinates: 39°16′49″N 81°35′6″W / 39.28028°N 81.58500°W / 39.28028; -81.58500
CountryUnited States
StateOhio
CountyWashington
Government
 • MayorMichael L. Lorentz (D)[1]
Area
 • Total3.57 sq mi (9.25 km2)
 • Land3.49 sq mi (9.04 km2)
 • Water0.08 sq mi (0.21 km2)
Elevation614 ft (187 m)
Population
 • Total6,441
 • Estimate 
(2017[3])
6,406
 • Density1,845.6/sq mi (712.6/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
45714
Area code(s)740
FIPS code39-05424[4]
GNIS feature ID1077518[2]
Websitehttp://www.cityofbelpre.com/
Farmer's Castle fortification at Belpre during the Northwest Indian War

Belpre (historically spelled Belpré;[5] pronounced /ˈbɛlpr/ BEL-pree[6][5]) is a city in Washington County, Ohio, United States, along the Ohio River near Parkersburg, West Virginia. Its name derives from "Belle Prairie" (French for "beautiful meadow"), the name given to the valley by French trappers prior to more permanent settlement by European Americans.[7][5]

Part of the Parkersburg-Marietta-Vienna, WV-OH Metropolitan Statistical Area, the city is located about 14 miles (22km) downriver from Marietta. In 1870 the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad completed the Parkersburg Bridge (CSX) across the river; at 7,140 feet (2,180 m), it was reportedly the longest in the world.

The population was 6,441 at the 2010 census. Belpre was the second United States settlement in the Northwest Territory after Marietta. The city is home to the first library established in the Territory. Its public school hired the first female schoolteacher in Ohio.

History[edit]

The first settlement at Belpre was made in 1788.[8] In 1845 railroad developers founded the Belpre and Cincinnati Railroad, but the destination was changed to Marietta, with a corresponding name change in 1851. For a considerable period of time, travelers had to go by steamboat to connect between Marietta and Parkersburg, Virginia; the latter received service from the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad in 1857. This was shortly before the western part of Virginia seceded in 1861 after the start of the American Civil War to form Unionist West Virginia. Belpre and Marietta were later connected by rail. Coal service is still active on this line.

From 1868-1870, the B&O built the Parkersburg Bridge (CSX) between West Virginia and Belpre, on its main line to St. Louis, Missouri. Designed by Jacob Linville, when completed in 1870 the bridge was reportedly the longest in the world at 7,140 feet (2,180 m).[9] The bridge attracted more trade to the town, enabled shipping Ohio coal to the East Coast, and improved access on both sides of the river.

Developing in a different pattern from the more industrial cities of eastern Ohio, Belpre reached its peak of population in 1980. It has had some losses since then with the decline of heavy industry, but is relatively stable compared to the former industrial cities, which have lost half their residents since peaks in 1940 and 1950. A small settlement, Rockland, has been absorbed into the Belpre community.[10]

The Steven Soderbergh film Bubble (2006) was filmed in Belpre and Parkersburg, West Virginia, using an all-local cast.

Geography[edit]

Belpre is located at 39°16′49″N 81°35′6″W / 39.28028°N 81.58500°W / 39.28028; -81.58500 (39.280175, -81.585072).[11]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 3.57 square miles (9.25 km2), of which 3.49 square miles (9.04 km2) is land and 0.08 square miles (0.21 km2) is water.[12]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1870911
1880901−1.1%
18901,00711.8%
19101,249
19201,3175.4%
19301,72430.9%
19401,717−0.4%
19502,45142.7%
19605,418121.1%
19707,18932.7%
19807,1930.1%
19906,796−5.5%
20006,660−2.0%
20106,441−3.3%
Est. 20176,406[13]−0.5%
Sources:[14][15][16][17][18]

2010 census[edit]

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 6,441 people, 3,053 households, and 1,788 families in the city. The population density was 712.5/sqmi (275.1/km²). There were 3,351 housing units at an average density of 370.7/sqmi (143.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.7% White, 2.1% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.4% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.2% from other races, and 2.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.8% of the population.

There were 3,053 households of which 24.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.6% were married couples living together, 13.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.6% had a male householder with no wife present, and 41.4% were non-families. 35.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.11 and the average family size was 2.71.

The median age in the city was 44.7 years. 18.8% of residents were under the age of 18; 7.8% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.8% were from 25 to 44; 28.9% were from 45 to 64; and 20.7% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 46.7% male and 53.3% female.

2000 census[edit]

As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 6,660 people, 3,058 households, and 1,923 families in the city. The population density was 736.7/sqmi (284.5/km²). There were 3,283 housing units at an average density of 363.2/sqmi (140.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.01% White, 2.10% African American, 0.11% Native American, 0.42% Asian, 0.12% from other races, and 1.25% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.48% of the population.

There were 3,058 households out of which 25.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.9% were married couples living together, 11.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.1% were non-families. 32.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.18 and the average family size was 2.73.

The city population contained 20.9% under the age of 18, 8.3% from 18 to 24, 26.4% from 25 to 44, 26.0% from 45 to 64, and 18.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females, there were 84.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 80.1 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $29,603, and the median income for a family was $36,401. Males had a median income of $31,743 versus $21,789 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,195. About 12.1% of families and 15.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.7% of those under age 18 and 7.6% of those age 65 or over.

Climate[edit]

The climate in this area is characterized by relatively high temperatures and evenly distributed precipitation throughout the year. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Belpre has a Humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.[19]

Climate data for Belpre, Ohio
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 5
(41)
7
(44)
12
(54)
18
(65)
24
(75)
28
(83)
30
(86)
29
(85)
26
(79)
19
(67)
13
(55)
7
(44)
18
(65)
Daily mean °C (°F) 0
(32)
2
(35)
6
(43)
12
(54)
17
(63)
22
(72)
24
(75)
23
(74)
20
(68)
13
(56)
7
(45)
2
(36)
12
(54)
Average low °C (°F) −4
(24)
−4
(25)
1
(33)
6
(42)
11
(52)
16
(61)
18
(65)
17
(63)
13
(56)
7
(45)
2
(36)
−3
(27)
7
(44)
Average precipitation cm (inches) 7.6
(3)
6.9
(2.7)
9.1
(3.6)
8.4
(3.3)
9.7
(3.8)
10
(4.1)
11
(4.4)
9.4
(3.7)
7.4
(2.9)
6.1
(2.4)
7.1
(2.8)
7.4
(2.9)
100
(39.5)
Source: Weatherbase [20]

Education[edit]

Belpre City School District operates one elementary school and one high school.[21]

Belpre has a public library, a branch of the Washington County Public Library.[22]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Washington County Election Results". Retrieved March 22, 2008.[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ a b "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  3. ^ "Population Estimates". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 17, 2013. Retrieved June 17, 2013.
  4. ^ "American FactFinder". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  5. ^ a b c Thwaites, Reuben Gold (1897). Afloat on the Ohio: An Historical Pilgrimage of a Thousand Miles in a Skiff, from Redstone to Cairo. Doubleday & McClure. p. 100 – via Google Books. Across the river, in Ohio, is Belpré (short for Belle Prairie, and now locally pronounced Bel′pry), settled by Revolutionary soldiers, on the Marietta grant, in 1789-90.
  6. ^ "A Pronunciation Guide to places in Ohio". Athens, Ohio: E. W. Scripps School of Journalism. June 22, 2012. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
  7. ^ Kilbourn, John (1833). The Ohio Gazetteer, Or a Topographical Dictionary. Scott and Wright. p. 91. Retrieved December 12, 2013.
  8. ^ Davidson, Cathy N. (September 3, 2004). Revolution and the Word: The Rise of the Novel in America. Oxford University Press. p. 446. ISBN 978-0-19-028743-6.
  9. ^ Baltimore & Ohio Railroad, Parkersburg Bridge, Ohio River, Parkersburg, Wood County, WV, Historic American Engineering Record, accessed August 22, 2012
  10. ^ Rockland (in Washington County, Ohio) Populated Place Profile (accessed 26 March 2019)
  11. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". US Census Bureau]]. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
  12. ^ "US Gazetteer files 2010". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on July 14, 2012. Retrieved January 6, 2013.
  13. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved March 26, 2019.
  14. ^ "Population: Ohio" (PDF). 1910 US Census. US Census Bureau. Retrieved November 28, 2013.
  15. ^ "Population: Ohio" (PDF). 1930 US Census. US Census Bureau. Retrieved November 28, 2013.
  16. ^ "Number of Inhabitants: Ohio" (PDF). 18th Census of the United States. US Census Bureau. Retrieved November 22, 2013.[permanent dead link]
  17. ^ "Ohio: Population and Housing Unit Counts" (PDF). US Census Bureau. Retrieved November 22, 2013.
  18. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 17, 2013. Retrieved November 25, 2013.
  19. ^ Climate Summary for Belpre
  20. ^ "Weatherbase.com". Weatherbase. 2013. Retrieved September 13, 2013.
  21. ^ "Homepage". Belpre City Schools. Retrieved March 3, 2018.
  22. ^ "Hours & Locations". Washington County Public Library. Retrieved March 3, 2018.