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Iron County, Missouri
Iron County MO courthouse-20140524-114 v2.jpg
County courthouse in Ironton
Map of Missouri highlighting Iron County
Location in the state of Missouri
Map of the U.S. highlighting Missouri
Missouri's location in the U.S.
Founded February 17, 1857
Named for Iron ore
Seat Ironton
Largest city Ironton
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

552 sq mi (1,430 km²)
550 sq mi (1,424 km²)
1.8 sq mi (5 km²), 0.3
Population
 - (2020)
 - Density

9,537
Congressional district 8th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5

Iron County is a county located in the Lead Belt region in the U.S. state of Missouri. As of the 2020 census, the population was 9,537.[1] The largest city and county seat is Ironton.[2] Iron County was officially organized on February 17, 1857, and was named after the abundance of iron ore found within its borders.[3][4]

Iron County includes the 6-mile (9.7 km)-long, 2-mile (3.2 km)-wide Arcadia Valley, the site of Pilot Knob, Ironton, and Arcadia, communities established by immigrants in the 19th Century.[5] The valley is surrounded by the Saint Francois Mountains of the Ozarks Plateau. Iron County is also home to dozens of mountains,[6] including the 1,772-foot (540 m) Taum Sauk Mountain, the highest point in Missouri.

The county is home to a number of state parks and historical sites including Taum Sauk Mountain State Park, Elephant Rocks State Park and Fort Davidson State Historic Site as well as 96,047 acres (390 km2) of Mark Twain National Forest.[7]

Geography[]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 552 square miles (1,430 km2), of which 550 square miles (1,400 km2) is land and 1.8 square miles (4.7 km2) (0.3%) is water.[8]

Adjacent counties[]

National protected areas[]

  • Mark Twain National Forest (part)
  • Pilot Knob National Wildlife Refuge

Demographics[]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1860 5,842
1870 6,278 7.5%
1880 8,183 30.3%
1890 9,119 11.4%
1900 8,716 −4.4%
1910 8,563 −1.8%
1920 9,458 10.5%
1930 9,642 1.9%
1940 10,440 8.3%
1950 9,458 −9.4%
1960 8,041 −15.0%
1970 9,529 18.5%
1980 11,084 16.3%
1990 10,726 −3.2%
2000 10,697 −0.3%
2010 10,630 −0.6%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]
1790-1960[10] 1900-1990[11]
1990-2000[12] 2010-2020[13]

As of the census[14] of 2000, there were 10,697 people, 4,197 households, and 2,963 families residing in the county. The population density was 7/km2 (19/mi2). There were 4,907 housing units at an average density of 3/km2 (9/mi2). The racial makeup of the county was 96.74% White, 1.56% Black or African American, 0.34% Native American, 0.09% Asian, 0.22% from other races, and 1.05% from two or more races. Approximately 0.58% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 4,197 households, out of which 32.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.80% were married couples living together, 9.40% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.40% were non-families. 25.80% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.94.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 25.00% under the age of 18, 7.80% from 18 to 24, 25.30% from 25 to 44, 24.80% from 45 to 64, and 17.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 94.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.80 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $31,276, and the median income for a family was $38,037. Males had a median income of $28,603 versus $16,615 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,717. About 13.80% of families and 19.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.60% of those under age 18 and 13.20% of those age 65 or over.

Religion[]

According to the Association of Religion Data Archives County Membership Report (2000), Iron County is a part of the Bible Belt with evangelical Protestantism being the majority religion. The most predominant denominations among residents in Iron County who adhere to a religion are Southern Baptists (56.62%), Methodists (10.60%), and Roman Catholics (7.82%).

Politics[]

Local[]

Control is evenly split at the local level in Iron County. Democrats hold 7 of the 14 positions in the county, while Republicans control the other 7.

Iron County, Missouri
Elected countywide officials
Assessor David L. Huff Democratic
Circuit Clerk Sammye (Gail) White Democratic
County Clerk Stephanie Lebron Republican
Collector Crystal Price Republican
Commissioner
(Presiding)
Jim Scaggs Democratic
Commissioner
(District 1)
Ben Young Republican
Commissioner
(District 2)
Ronnie Chandler Republican
Coroner Tim Harbison Republican
Prosecuting Attorney Brian Parker Democratic
Public Administrator Lisa Light Republican
Recorder Karen K. Reagan Democratic
Sheriff Jeff Burkett Republican
Surveyor Mark Nations Democratic
Treasurer Carol Hardy Democratic

State[]

In the Missouri House of Representatives, all of Iron County is a part of Missouri's 144th District and is currently represented by Republican Paul Fitzwater of Potosi. Fitzwater was elected in 2016 to his fourth and final term in the Missouri House.

In the Missouri Senate, all of Iron County is a part of Missouri's 3rd District and is currently represented by Republican Gary Romine of Farmington. Romine defeated former Democratic State Representative Joseph Fallert, Jr. of Ste. Genevieve in 2012 with 53.84 percent of the vote in the district, which includes most of the Missouri Lead Belt region. The seat was vacated by former Republican State Senator Kevin Engler of Farmington. Engler successfully served two terms/eight years in the Missouri Senate and was ineligible to seek a third term due to term limits.

Past Gubernatorial Elections Results
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2020 72.1% 3,266 24.4% 1,105 3.6% 160
2016 60.76% 2,600 34.99% 1,497 4.25% 182
2012 39.87% 1,596 56.91% 2,278 3.22% 129
2008 33.45% 1,483 64.14% 2,844 2.41% 107
2004 50.62% 2,359 47.53% 2,215 2.85% 86
2000 45.42% 2,002 51.23% 2,258 3.35% 148
1996 35.54% 1,470 62.60% 2,589 1.86% 77
1992 37.07% 1,653 62.93% 2,806 0.00% 0
1988 55.65% 2,290 44.16% 1,817 0.19% 8
1984 50.01% 2,127 49.99% 2,126 0.00% 0
1980 51.18% 2,322 48.62% 2,206 0.20% 9
1976 46.76% 2,043 52.99% 2,315 0.25% 11
1972 51.80% 1,840 48.86% 1,760 0.06% 2
1968 33.82% 1,246 66.18% 2,438 0.00% 0
1964 28.59% 1,066 71.41% 2,662 0.00% 0
1960 38.41% 1,465 61.59% 2,349 0.00% 0

Federal[]

Missouri's two U.S. Senators are Republicans Roy Blunt and Josh Hawley.

Hawley was elected to his first term in 2018 with 51.4 percent of the statewide vote over Democratic U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill; Iron County voters backed Hawley with 62.6 percent of the vote.

U.S. Senate - Class I - Iron County (2018)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Josh Hawley 2,236 62.6
Democratic Claire McCaskill 1,231 34.4

Blunt was re-elected in 2016 with 49.3 percent of the statewide vote over Democratic Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander, Libertarian Jonathan Dine of Riverside, Constitutionalist Fred Ryman, and Green Party candidate Johnathan McFarland; Iron County voters supported Blunt with over 55 percent of the vote.

U.S. Senate - Class III - Iron County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Roy Blunt 2,329 55.10
Democratic Jason Kander 1,671 39.53
Libertarian Jonathan Dine 102 2.41
Green Johnathan McFarland 79 1.87
Constitution Fred Ryman 46 1.09

All of Iron County is included in Missouri's 8th Congressional District and is currently represented by Republican Jason T. Smith of Salem in the U.S. House of Representatives. Smith won a special election on Tuesday, June 4, 2013, to complete the remaining term of former Republican U.S. Representative Jo Ann Emerson of Cape Girardeau. Emerson announced her resignation a month after being reelected with over 70 percent of the vote in the district. She resigned to become CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative.

U.S. House of Representatives - District 8 – Iron County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jo Ann Emerson 2,741 69.01 +15.84
Democratic Jack Rushin 1,113 28.02 -13.51
Libertarian Rick Vandeven 118 2.97 +0.19
U.S. House of Representatives - District 8 - Special Election – Iron County (2013)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jason T. Smith 409 52.44
Democratic Steve Hodges 229 43.46
Constitution Doug Enyart 20 2.56
Libertarian Bill Slantz 6 0.77
Write-in Thomas Brown 6 0.77
U.S. House of Representatives - District 8 – Iron County (2020)[15]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jason T. Smith 3,358 75.9
Democratic Kathy Ellis 985 22.3
Libertarian Tom Schmitz 82 1.9

Political culture[]

United States presidential election results for Iron County, Missouri[16]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 3,596 78.31% 945 20.58% 51 1.11%
2016 3,173 74.33% 933 21.86% 163 3.82%
2012 2,252 55.87% 1,669 41.40% 110 2.73%
2008 2,090 47.35% 2,213 50.14% 111 2.51%
2004 2,477 52.94% 2,157 46.10% 45 0.96%
2000 2,237 50.68% 2,044 46.31% 133 3.01%
1996 1,328 31.92% 2,221 53.39% 611 14.69%
1992 1,276 27.54% 2,507 54.10% 851 18.36%
1988 1,877 45.01% 2,283 54.75% 10 0.24%
1984 2,316 53.38% 2,023 46.62% 0 0.00%
1980 2,205 48.45% 2,226 48.91% 120 2.64%
1976 1,765 39.81% 2,646 59.68% 23 0.52%
1972 2,203 62.07% 1,346 37.93% 0 0.00%
1968 1,600 41.60% 1,755 45.63% 491 12.77%
1964 1,050 27.78% 2,730 72.22% 0 0.00%
1960 2,122 53.41% 1,851 46.59% 0 0.00%
1956 1,810 47.88% 1,970 52.12% 0 0.00%
1952 1,831 44.40% 2,286 55.43% 7 0.17%
1948 1,435 35.93% 2,552 63.90% 7 0.18%
1944 1,649 42.79% 2,205 57.21% 0 0.00%
1940 2,062 45.17% 2,495 54.65% 8 0.18%
1936 1,605 39.84% 2,413 59.89% 11 0.27%
1932 1,439 34.49% 2,689 64.45% 44 1.05%
1928 1,910 58.68% 1,342 41.23% 3 0.09%
1924 1,328 43.24% 1,675 54.54% 68 2.21%
1920 1,463 47.64% 1,554 50.60% 54 1.76%
1916 874 45.14% 1,027 53.05% 35 1.81%
1912 666 40.22% 845 51.03% 145 8.76%
1908 828 46.60% 931 52.39% 18 1.01%
1904 670 42.92% 861 55.16% 30 1.92%
1900 642 40.20% 932 58.36% 23 1.44%
1896 607 37.24% 1,016 62.33% 7 0.43%
1892 568 38.74% 880 60.03% 18 1.23%
1888 662 37.44% 1,004 56.79% 102 5.77%



Historically, Iron County has been one of the most reliably Democratic counties in Missouri. Located in the Lead Belt region of the state, mining has been important to the county's economy. It was one of only three predominantly rural counties in Missouri to vote for Barack Obama in 2008 (nearby Washington and Ste. Genevieve counties being the other two). Like much of the rest of the state's rural areas, the county saw a rapid rightward swing starting in 2000, when George W. Bush became the first Republican since 1984 (and the second since 1972) to carry it, after Bill Clinton had carried it in 1996 by over twenty points. Apart from the interruption in 2008, the Republican vote share has, as of 2020, grown in every subsequent election. At the local and state levels, however, Iron County still remains quite Democratic. At the same time Romney won Iron County by 15 points in 2012, all Democratic statewide candidates Jay Nixon (Governor), Claire McCaskill (U.S. Senator), Jason Kander (Secretary of State), Chris Koster (Attorney General), and Clint Zweifel (State Treasurer) carried Iron County by healthy margins; Peter Kinder (Lieutenant Governor) was the only other statewide Republican to win Iron County alongside Romney, and even then, the margin of victory was smaller than in most other rural counties.

Like most rural areas throughout Southeast Missouri, voters in Iron County generally adhere to socially and culturally conservative principles but are more moderate or populist on economic issues. In 2004, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman—it overwhelmingly passed Iron County with 80.90 percent of the vote. The initiative passed the state with 71 percent of support from voters as Missouri became the first state to ban same-sex marriage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to fund and legalize embryonic stem cell research in the state—it failed in Iron County with 56.03 percent voting against the measure. The initiative narrowly passed the state with 51 percent of support from voters as Missouri became one of the first states in the nation to approve embryonic stem cell research. Despite Iron County's longstanding tradition of supporting socially conservative platforms, voters in the county have a penchant for advancing populist causes like increasing the minimum wage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a proposition (Proposition B) to increase the minimum wage in the state to $6.50 an hour—it passed Iron County with 78.25 percent of the vote. The proposition strongly passed every single county in Missouri with 75.94 percent voting in favor as the minimum wage was increased to $6.50 an hour in the state. During the same election, voters in five other states also strongly approved increases in the minimum wage.

Donald Trump won the county with 74% of the vote in 2016, continuing a trend of white, rural Midwestern counties that had voted for Obama in 2008 and/or 2012 and had swung hard to Trump in 2016. The Trump campaign had made promises to bolster the jobs situations in the Rust Belt, which combined with elevated social liberalism from the Democrats, may have played a role in the margins -- which could be said for various other white working-class Midwestern counties that did the same.

Missouri presidential preference primary (2008)[]

In the 2008 Missouri Presidential Preference Primary, voters in Iron County from both political parties supported candidates who finished in second place in the state at large and nationally. Former U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton (D-New York) received more votes, a total of 1,180, than any candidate from either party in Iron County during the 2008 Missouri Presidential Primaries. She also received more votes altogether than the total number of votes cast in the entire Republican Primary in Iron County.

Education[]

Of adults 25 years of age and older in Iron County, 65.2% possesses a high school diploma or higher while 8.4% holds a bachelor's degree or higher as their highest educational attainment.

Public schools[]

  • Arcadia Valley School District - Ironton
    • Arcadia Valley Elementary School (PK-04)
    • Arcadia Valley Middle School (05-08)
    • Arcadia Valley High School (09-12)
  • Belleview R-III Elementary School - Belleview - (K-08)
  • Iron County C-4 School District - Viburnum
    • Viburnum Elementary School (K-06)
    • Viburnum High School (07-12)
  • South Iron County R-I School District - Annapolis
    • South Iron County Elementary School (PK-06)
    • South Iron County High School (07-12)

Vocational/technical schools[]

  • Arcadia Valley Career Technical Center - Ironton - (09-12)

Public libraries[]

  • Ozark Regional Library[17]

Transportation[]

State highways[]

  • MO-21.svg Route 21
  • MO-32.svg Route 32
  • MO-49.svg Route 49
  • MO-72.svg Route 72

Railroads[]

  • The Iron Mountain Railroad,[18] later incorporated into Union Pacific, runs through Arcadia Valley. The train station in Arcadia serves Amtrak's Texas Eagle.

Communities[]

Cities and Towns[]

  • Annapolis
  • Arcadia
  • Belleview
  • Des Arc
  • Ironton (county seat)
  • Pilot Knob
  • Viburnum

Unincorporated Communities[]

  • Banner
  • Belleview
  • Bixby
  • Chloride
  • Ghermanville
  • Glover
  • Good Water
  • Goodland
  • Graniteville
  • Hogan
  • Middlebrook
  • Minimum
  • Pin Hook
  • Redmondville
  • Sabula
  • Vulcan

See also[]

  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Iron County, Missouri

References[]

  1. ^ "Explore Census Data". https://data.census.gov/cedsci/profile?g=0500000US29093. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. http://www.naco.org/Counties/Pages/FindACounty.aspx. 
  3. ^ Eaton, David Wolfe (1916). How Missouri Counties, Towns and Streams Were Named. The State Historical Society of Missouri. pp. 176. https://archive.org/details/bub_gb_RfAuAAAAYAAJ. 
  4. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off.. pp. 166. https://archive.org/details/bub_gb_9V1IAAAAMAAJ. 
  5. ^ “The Arcadia Country” ca. 1920 Script error: No such module "webarchive". from the Western Historical Manuscript Collection of Missouri S&T
  6. ^ Summits of Iron County from TopoZone
  7. ^ "Acreage by State, Congressional District and County Report". U.S. Forest Service. 2007-10-10. http://www.fs.fed.us/land/staff/lar/2007/TABLE_6d.htm#TABLE_6_bm31. 
  8. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. https://www.census.gov/geo/maps-data/data/docs/gazetteer/counties_list_29.txt. 
  9. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/decennial-census.html. 
  10. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. http://mapserver.lib.virginia.edu. 
  11. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/population/cencounts/mo190090.txt. 
  12. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/population/www/cen2000/briefs/phc-t4/tables/tab02.pdf. 
  13. ^ "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/29/29093.html. 
  14. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov. 
  15. ^ "Missouri U.S. House - District 8 Election Results | des Moines Register". https://www.desmoinesregister.com/elections/results/race/2020-11-03-house-MO-26035/. 
  16. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS. 
  17. ^ Breeding, Marshall. "Ozark Regional Library". Libraries.org. https://librarytechnology.org/library/20288. 
  18. ^ H.R. 1424, an Act of Congress dated July 13, 1868, from the American Memory website

External links[]

Coordinates: 37°33′N 90°46′W / 37.55, -90.76

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Iron County, Missouri. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.
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