Main Births etc
City of Anderson, Indiana
—  City  —
Anderson from the air, looking west.
Motto: Performance. Talent. Inspiration.
Location in the state of Indiana
Coordinates: 40°6′0″N 85°40′53″W / 40.1, -85.68139Coordinates: 40°6′0″N 85°40′53″W / 40.1, -85.68139
Country United States
State Indiana
County Madison
Townships Anderson (Primarily)
Adams, Fall Creek, Lafayette, Richland, Union (Small Sections)
 • Mayor Kevin Smith (R)
 • Total 41.48 sq mi (107.43 km2)
 • Land 41.37 sq mi (107.15 km2)
 • Water 0.11 sq mi (0.28 km2)
Elevation[2] 879 ft (268 m)
Population (2010)[3]
 • Total 56,129
 • Estimate (2012)[4] 55,554
 • Density 1,356.8/sq mi (523.9/km2)
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 46011-46018
Area code 765
FIPS code[2][5] 18-01468
GNIS ID[2][5] 430152

Anderson is a city in and the county seat of Madison County, Indiana, United States.[6] It is the principal city of the Anderson, Indiana Metropolitan Statistical Area which encompasses Madison County. Anderson is the headquarters of the Church of God (Anderson) and home of Anderson University, which is affiliated with that denomination. Highlights of the city include the historic Paramount Theatre and the Gruenewald Historic House.

The population was 56,129 at the 2010 census.[7] This is down from 70,000 in 1970.[8]


Prior to the organization of Madison County, William Conner entered the land upon which Anderson is located. Conner later sold the ground to John and Sarah Berry, who donated 32 acres (129,000 m²) of their land to Madison County on the condition that the county seat be moved from Pendleton to Anderson. John Berry laid out the first plat of Anderson on November 7, 1827. In 1828 the seat of justice was moved from Pendleton to Anderson.

The city is named for Chief William "Adam" Anderson, whose mother was a Delaware Indian (Lenape) and whose father was of Swedish descent. Chief Anderson's Indian name was Kikthawenund (spelled in a variety of ways) meaning "making a noise" or "causing to crack." The Delaware village was known as Anderson's Town, though the Moravian Missionaries called it "The Heathen Town Four Miles Away." Anderson was also known as Andersonton before being formally organized as Anderson.

Introduction of internal improvements by the Mammoth Internal Improvement Act caused a growth in the population in 1837. In December, 1838, Anderson was incorporated as a town with 350 inhabitants. The Central Canal, a branch of the Wabash and Erie Canal, was planned to come through Anderson. Work continued on the canal during 1838 and the beginning of 1839, but work on the canal was soon suspended by the state following the Panic of 1837. The town again became a sleepy village until 1849 when it was incorporated a second time as a town. Many new commercial ventures located around the Courthouse Square.

This incorporation was short-lived and Anderson once again went back to village status in 1852. However, with the completion of the Indianapolis Bellefontaine Railroad, as well as their station in 1852, Anderson burst to life. The third incorporation of Anderson as a town occurred on June 9, 1853. The population continued to increase. On August 28, 1865, with a population was nearly 1,300 people, Anderson was incorporated as a city.

Charles L. Henry, 1896

Between 1853 and the late 19th century, twenty industries of various sizes located there. On March 31, 1887, natural gas was discovered in Anderson. As the Indiana Gas Boom began, this discovery led new businesses that could use natural gas, such as glass-making, to move to the city. Anderson grew to such proportions that a Cincinnati newspaper editor labeled the city "The Pittsburgh on White River." Other appellations were "Queen City of the Gas Belt" and (because of the vulcanizing and the rubber tire manufacturing business) "Puncture Proof City."

In 1897 the Interurban Railroad was born in Anderson. Charles Henry, a large stock holder, coined the term "Interurban" in 1893. It continued to operate until 1941. The year 1912 spelled disaster for Anderson: the natural gas ran out, due to the residents squandering their resources. The city left its gas powered lights on day and night, and there are stories of a pocket of natural gas being lit in the river and burning for a prolonged period for the spectacle of it. The result of the loss of natural gas was that several factories moved out. The whole city slowed down. The Commercial Club (formed on November 18, 1905) was the forerunner of the present chamber of commerce.

This club persuaded the Remy brothers to stay in Anderson and others to locate there. For decades, Delco Remy and Guide Lamp, during World War II built the M3, M3a1 submachine gun and the liberator pistol for the allies, (later Fisher Guide) were the top two employers in the city. From 1913 through the 1950s, the Ward-Stilson Company was one of the country's largest producers of uniforms, regalia, furniture and props for the Freemasons, the Odd Fellows and dozens of other U.S. fraternal organizations.

The Church of God of Anderson located its world headquarters in Anderson in 1905. Anderson Bible School was opened in 1917, and this was separated from Gospel Trumpet (now known as Warner Press) in 1925. At the same time, it became known as Anderson Bible School and Seminary. In 1925, the name was changed to Anderson College and then to Anderson University in 1988.

Over the years, 17 different types of automobiles were manufactured in Anderson with the Lambert family among the city's leaders in its development and Buckeye Gasoline Buggy the Lambert product. Many other inventions were perfected in Anderson including: the gas regulator (Miron G. Reynolds), the stamp vending machine (Frank P. Dunn), clothes presser (H. Donald Forse), Irish Mail (Hugh Hill), flower car for funeral homes (Francis M. McClain, automatic gearshift (Von D. Polhemus)), Sisson choke (Glenn Sisson), and the vulcanizing process to retread tires (Charles E. Miller).


Anderson is located at 40°06′00″N 85°40′54″W / 40.100041, -85.681525.[9] The city of Anderson is located in parts of four townships: Anderson, Union, Richland, and Lafayette.

According to the 2010 census, the city has a total area of 41.48 square miles (107.4 km2), of which 41.37 square miles (107.1 km2) (or 99.73%) is land and 0.11 square miles (0.28 km2) (or 0.27%) is water.[10]


Climate data for Anderson, Indiana
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 69
Average high °F (°C) 32.3
Average low °F (°C) 17.4
Rainfall inches (cm) 2
Snowfall inches (cm) 6
Source #1: [11]
Source #2: [12]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1850 383
1860 1,196 212.3%
1870 3,126 161.4%
1880 4,126 32.0%
1890 10,741 160.3%
1900 20,178 87.9%
1910 22,476 11.4%
1920 29,767 32.4%
1930 39,804 33.7%
1940 41,572 4.4%
1950 46,820 12.6%
1960 49,061 4.8%
1970 70,787 44.3%
1980 64,695 −8.6%
1990 59,459 −8.1%
2000 59,734 0.5%
2010 56,129 −6.0%
Source: US Census Bureau

2010 census[]

As of the 2010 census,[3] there were 56,129 people, 23,560 households, and 13,756 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,356.8 inhabitants per square mile (523.9 /km2). There were 27,953 housing units at an average density of 675.7 per square mile (260.9 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 78.8% White, 15.2% African American, 0.3% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 2.6% from other races, and 2.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.8% of the population.

There were 23,560 households of which 28.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.8% were married couples living together, 17.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.5% had a male householder with no wife present, and 41.6% were non-families. 34.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.91.

The median age in the city was 37.8 years. 22.4% of residents were under the age of 18; 11.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.8% were from 25 to 44; 24.9% were from 45 to 64; and 16.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.9% male and 52.1% female.

2000 census[]

As of the 2000 census,[13] there were 59,734 people, 25,274 households, and 15,417 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,491.6 people per square mile (575.9/km²). There were 27,643 housing units at an average density of 690.3 per square mile (266.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 81.99% White, 14.88% African American, 0.31% Native American, 0.49% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.86% from other races, and 1.45% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.07% of the population.

There were 25,274 households out of which 27.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.4% were married couples living together, 15.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.0% were non-families. 33.1% 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 2.28 and the average family size was 2.87.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.2% under the age of 18, 11.2% from 18 to 24, 27.6% from 25 to 44, 21.3% from 45 to 64, and 16.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 90.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $32,577, and the median income for a family was $39,552. Males had a median income of $31,346 versus $22,736 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,142. About 10.8% of families and 13.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.3% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.


The city government consists of a mayor and a city council. The mayor is elected in citywide vote. The city council consists of nine members. Six are elected from individual districts. Three members are elected at large.


In 2007, Anderson was ranked 98th in the Forbes List for 100 Best Places for Businesses among Smaller U.S. Metro areas.[14]

When General Motors closed its operations in Anderson, the city was dealt a major economic blow as GM was the biggest employer in Anderson.[15]

As of June 2014, the ten largest employers in Madison County were:[16]

Rank Employer # of employees
1 Community Hospital Anderson 1,225
2 St. Vincent Health 1,124
3 Nestlé 700
4 Carter Express 650
5 Hoosier Park 623
6 Anderson University 500
7 Xerox 500
8 Walmart 400
9 Kroger/Pay Less Super Markets 375
10 Ricker Oil Company 270

Points of interest[]

The Paramount Theatre.

  • Downtown Historic District
  • Paramount Theatre
  • Mounds State Park
  • The Anderson Center for the Arts
  • Madison County Historical Center


Anderson's public school district is the Anderson Community School Corporation, which includes one high school, Anderson High School which serves grades 9 - 12; one junior high school, Highland Junior High School (formerly Highland High School) which serves grades 6 - 8, six elementary schools (Eastside, Edgewood, Valley Grove, 10th Street, Erskine, Anderson Elementary) which serve k -5, a kindergarten center (Killbuck), and a preschool (Southview). Until 1997, Anderson had three high schools: Highland, Madison Heights and Anderson. In 1997 Madison Heights was closed and Anderson High School moved into that facility. Beginning in the fall of 2010, Highland High School closed, as well, consolidating all students in grades 9-12 into Anderson High School.

Anderson also has a charter school (non-traditional, tuition-free public school) called Anderson Preparatory Academy. Currently, Anderson Preparatory Academy features grades K-11, planning to add grade 12 in the next year. Anderson Preparatory Academy is a college preparatory, military-based academy. All cadets in grades 6-8 are members of the Civil Air Patrol. High school cadets are all members of the Air Force JROTC program. Original plans called to only offer grades 6-9, then add on another upper grade each year before extending the lower years.

Anderson University and Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana are also located within the city.

In fiction[]

In the comic strip Peanuts, a book in the fictional series beloved by Snoopy, "The Six Bunny Wunnies," is called The Six Bunnie-Wunnies and Their Layover in Anderson, Indiana. (Charles Schulz had been recently awarded an honorary degree by Anderson College.)

Anderson is the home of several characters in the alternate history novel The Man with the Iron Heart by Harry Turtledove.

Notable people[]

  • Jermaine Allensworth, athlete
  • Lowell Amos, convicted "Black Widower" murderer
  • Melvin E. Biddle, World War II Medal of Honor recipient
  • Don Brandon, Hall of Fame Baseball Coach from Anderson University
  • Jann Browne, Country music singer
  • Gary Burton, jazz vibraphonist
  • Bob Carey, Indy car driver
  • Everett Case, nicknamed "Gray Fox," basketball coach notable for his tenure at North Carolina State University, 1946–1964
  • James Davis, politician, Secretary of Labor
  • Winfield T. Durbin, politician, former Governor of Indiana
  • Cory Edwards, producer of Hoodwinked! and Hoodwinked Too! Hood vs. Evil; created the internet series Krogzilla on Smosh's Shut Up Cartoons channel
  • Ray Enright, film director
  • Carl Erskine, former MLB pitcher for the Brooklyn & Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Krystal Harris, singer
  • Charles L. Henry, politician, congressman, coiner of the term "interurban"
  • Orville Hodge, embezzler
  • James Kilgore, Symbionese Liberation Army member
  • John William Lambert, inventor of first successful U.S. gasoline automobile
  • Adam Lind, MLB player for Toronto Blue Jays
  • Matt Lutz, actor
  • Von Mansfield, NFL defensive back
  • Brittany Mason, Teen Model USA 2004, Miss Indiana USA 2008, International Model
  • Mack Mattingly, politician, Georgia senator
  • Jon McLaughlin, singer
  • Phyllis Reynolds Naylor, author
  • Phill Niblock, composer and filmmaker
  • Sandi Patty, singer
  • James Rebhorn, actor
  • Brian Reed, comic book writer
  • Robert L. Rock, Mayor of Anderson, Indiana, Lieutenant Governor of Indiana
  • Kris Roe (The Ataris), singer
  • Fred Mustard Stewart, author
  • Nick Tanner, Christianity Today
  • Max Terhune, actor
  • Ray Tolbert, athlete
  • Albert Henry Vestal, majority whip of the House of Representatives, 1923–1931
  • Len Walston, singer-songwriter and music producer
  • Louis J. Weichmann
  • Bob Wilkerson, athlete
  • Jumping Johnny Wilson, athlete


  1. ^ "Places (2010)" (Zipped TXT). 2010 Census Gazetteer Files. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-11. 
  2. ^ a b c "Feature ID 430152". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved June 30, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-12-11. 
  4. ^ "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-06-25. 
  5. ^ a b "FIPS55 Data: Indiana". FIPS55 Data. United States Geological Survey. February 23, 2006. Retrieved June 30, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  7. ^ Brattain, Sam (2011-10-01). "APD measures manpower carefully". Herald Bulletin. Retrieved 2011-10-02. 
  8. ^ Peters, J. W.; Maynard, M. (February 20, 2006). "A town in danger of dying out as GM falters". New York Times. Retrieved June 8, 2014. 
  9. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  10. ^ "Places: Indiana". 2010 Census Gazetteer Files. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-04-21. 
  11. ^ "Weatherbase". Weatherbase. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  12. ^ "The Weather Channel". Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  13. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  14. ^ "100 best Places for Businessess among Smaller U.S. Metro areas". Forbes. May 2007. Archived from the original on February 26, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-20. 
  15. ^ Peters, Jeremy W.; Maynard, Micheline (February 20, 2006). "Company Town Relies on G.M. Long After Plants Have Closed". The New York Times. 
  16. ^ "Leading Employers". Madison County Corporation for Economic Development. 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-27. 

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