Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Fort Smith, Arkansas
Fort Smith, situated at the junction of the Arkansas and Poteau rivers, is a city and one of the two county seats of Sebastian County, Arkansas. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 80,268.
Fort Smith was founded in 1817 as a military settlement to patrol the neighboring Indian Territory. The Fort was abandoned in 1824 but a town founded by John Rogers had formed alongside the Fort by that time. In 1838 the Fort was re-occupied and expanded. In 1871 the Fort was again abandoned. The town continued to thrive despite the absence of the Fort, however.
Fort Smith is located at 35°22'7" North, 94°23'55" West (35.368691, -94.398737).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 137.1 km² (52.9 mi²). 130.4 km² (50.3 mi²) of it is land and 6.7 km² (2.6 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 4.89% water.
As of the census2 of 2000, there are 80,268 people, 32,398 households, and 20,637 families residing in the city. The population density is 615.5/km² (1,594.2/mi²). There are 35,341 housing units at an average density of 271.0/km² (701.9/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 76.99% White, 8.65% Black or African American, 1.69% Native American, 4.59% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 5.03% from other races, and 2.99% from two or more races. 8.78% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 32,398 households out of which 30.8% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.1% are married couples living together, 12.3% have a female householder with no husband present, and 36.3% are non-families. 30.7% of all households are made up of individuals and 10.9% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.42 and the average family size is 3.03.
In the city the population is spread out with 25.4% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 29.3% from 25 to 44, 21.8% from 45 to 64, and 13.7% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 35 years. For every 100 females there are 94.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 91.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $32,157, and the median income for a family is $41,012. Males have a median income of $29,799 versus $22,276 for females. The per capita income for the city is $18,994. 15.8% of the population and 12.1% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 22.2% of those under the age of 18 and 9.6% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.
- Home of the Fort Smith campus of the University of Arkansas, which was formerly the WestArk Community College campus.
- Served by Fort Smith Regional Airport , having the FAA designation of FSM (from its former name: Fort Smith Municipal Airport).
- The historic downtown suffered major damage due to a tornado on April 21, 1996. Reconstruction went on over a span of five years (and in some cases, longer).
- City of Fort Smith
- University of Arkansas at Fort Smith
- Collection of photographs and articles about the 1996 tornado
- Fort Smith Regional Airport
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