Grand Island, Nebraska
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Grand Island is a city in and the
county seat A county seat is an administrative centerAn administrative centre is a seat of regional administration or local government, or a county town, or the place where the central administration of a Township, commune is located. In countries with Fre ...
of Hall County,
Nebraska Nebraska () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper ...

Nebraska
, United States. The population was 48,520 at the
2010 census2010 census may refer to: * 2010 Chinese Census * 2010 Dominican Republic Census * 2010 Indonesian census * 2010 Malaysian Census * 2010 Russian Census * 2010 Turkish census * 2010 United States Census * 2010 Zambian census {{Disambiguation ...
. Grand Island is the principal city of the
Grand Island metropolitan area The Grand Island metropolitan area, as defined by the United States Census Bureau, is an area consisting of four counties in Nebraska, anchored by the city of Grand Island, Nebraska, Grand Island. It was upgraded from a micropolitan area and Hamilto ...
, which consists of Hall, Merrick,
Howard Howard is an English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the Wor ...
and
Hamilton Hamilton may refer to: People * Hamilton (name), a common British surname and occasional given name, usually of Scottish origin, including a list of persons with the surname ** The Duke of Hamilton, the premier peer of Scotland ** Lord Hamilton ...
counties. The Grand Island metropolitan area has an official population of 83,472 residents. Grand Island has been given the
All-America City Award The All-America City Award is a community recognition program in the United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primar ...
four times (1955, 1967, 1981, and 1982) by the National Civic League. Grand Island is home to the Nebraska Law Enforcement Training Center, which is the sole agency responsible for training law enforcement officers throughout the state, as well as the home of the
Southern Power District Southern Power District is a publicly owned electric distribution system providing electricity and related services to customers in south-central Nebraska. Based in Grand Island, Nebraska, its wholesale power provider is Nebraska Public Power Distri ...
serving southern Nebraska.


History

In 1857, 35 German settlers left
Davenport, Iowa Davenport is a city in and the county seat of Scott County, Iowa, Scott County, Iowa, United States. It is located along the Mississippi River on the eastern border of the state, and is the largest of the Quad Cities, a metropolitan area with a p ...
, and headed west to Nebraska to start a new settlement on an island known by French traders as ''La Grande Isle'', which was formed by the Wood River and the
Platte River The Platte River () is a major river in the State of Nebraska. It is about long; measured to its farthest source via its tributary, the North Platte River The North Platte River is a major tributary of the Platte River and is approximately ...

Platte River
. The settlers reached their destination on July 4, 1857, and by September had built housing using local timber. They set up farms but initially had no market to sell their goods until a market opened at
Fort Kearny Fort Kearny was a historic outpost of the United States Army The United States Army (USA) is the land Land is the solid surface of Earth that is not permanently submerged in water. Most but not all land is situated at elevations abov ...

Fort Kearny
. When the
Pike's Peak Gold Rush The Pike's Peak Gold Rush (later known as the Colorado Gold Rush) was the boom in gold Gold is a chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbe ...
began, Grand Island was the last place travelers could obtain supplies before they crossed the plains. Surveyors from the
Union Pacific Railroad The Union Pacific Railroad , legally Union Pacific Railroad Company and simply Union Pacific, is a freight-hauling railroad that operates 8,300 locomotives over routes in 23 U.S. state In the , a state is a , of which there are curre ...
(UP) laid out a town called Grand Island Station and many settlers living on Grand Island moved to the new town, located slightly inland from the island. In 1868 the railroad reached the area, bringing increased trade and business. Grand Island became the end of the east division of the railroad and UP built service facilities for their locomotives in the town as well as an elegant hotel for passengers providing a boost for the local economy. The cost of the railroad coming into town was the denudement of most of the hardwood trees on the island for use as ties for the railroad. By 1870, 1,057 people lived in the town and in 1872 the town was incorporated as Grand Island. In about 1890,
sugar beets A sugar beet is a plant whose root contains a high concentration of sucrose and which is grown commercially for sugar production. In plant breeding, it is known as the Altissima cultivar group of the common beet (''Beta vulgaris''). Together wit ...

sugar beets
were introduced as a crop in Nebraska. The first sugar beet processing factory in the United States was built in the southwest part of Grand Island.


1980 tornadoes

On June 3, 1980, Grand Island was hit by a massive
supercell A supercell is a thunderstorm A thunderstorm, also known as an electrical storm or a lightning storm, is a storm characterized by the presence of lightning and its acoustics, acoustic effect on the Earth's atmosphere, known as thunder. ...

supercell
storm. Through the course of the evening, the city was ravaged by seven
tornado A tornado is a violently rotating column of air File:Atmosphere gas proportions.svg, Composition of Earth's atmosphere by volume, excluding water vapor. Lower pie represents trace gases that together compose about 0.043391% of the atmos ...

tornado
es, the worst of which was rated F4 on the
Fujita Scale The Fujita scale (F-Scale; ), or Fujita–Pearson scale (FPP scale), is a scale for rating tornado intensity Tornado intensity can be measured by ''in situ'' or remote sensing image of Death Valley colored using polarimetry. Remote sensi ...
. The hardest hit area of town was the South Locust business district. There were five deaths as a result of the tornadoes. Tornado Hill is a local landmark created as a direct result of the tornadoes. Debris that could not be recycled was burned near Fonner Park and what remained was buried within Ryder Park, on the west end of town. The base of the hill was a hole 6–8 feet deep and nearly 200 feet across, and the hill is 40 feet high. It is used for sledding in this otherwise flat area. A book, ''
Night of the Twisters ''Night of the Twisters'' is a young adult fiction, young adult realistic fiction novel by Ivy Ruckman that was released in 1984 by publisher Harper (publisher)#Harper & Row (1962–1990), Harper & Row (now HarperCollins). The book is a semi-fict ...
'', by Ivy Ruckman, and movie were based on this event.


Geography and climate

According to the
United States Census Bureau The United States Census Bureau (USCB), officially the Bureau of the Census, is a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System, responsible for producing data about the American American(s) may refer to: * American, something of, ...
, the city has a total area of , of which is land and is water.


Demographics


2010 census

As of the
census A census is the procedure of systematically calculating, acquiring and recording information Information is processed, organised and structured data Data (; ) are individual facts, statistics, or items of information, often numeric. In ...

census
of 2010, there were 48,520 people, 18,326 households, and 11,846 families living in the city. The
population density Population density (in agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary Image:Family watching television 1958.jpg, Exercise tr ...

population density
was . There were 19,426 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the city was 80.0%
White White is the lightest color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the Unite ...
, 2.1%
African American African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans) are an ethnic group An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people A people is any plurality of person A person (plural people or persons) is a being t ...
, 1.0%
Native American Native Americans may refer to: Ethnic groups * Indigenous peoples of the Americas, the pre-Columbian peoples of North and South America and their descendants * Native Americans in the United States * Indigenous peoples in Canada, the indigenous p ...
, 1.2%
Asian Asian may refer to: * Items from or related to the continent of Asia: ** Asian people, people in or descending from Asia ** Asian culture, the culture of the people from Asia ** Asian cuisine, food based on the style of food of the people from Asi ...
, 0.2%
Pacific Islander Pacific Islanders, Pacificer, Pasifika, or Pasefika, are the peoples of the Pacific Islands This is a list of islands in the Pacific Ocean, collectively called the Pacific Islands. Three major groups of island An island (or isle) ...
, 13.1% from
other races Other most often refers to: * Other (philosophy), a concept in psychology and philosophy Other or The Other may also refer to: Books * The Other (Tryon novel), ''The Other'' (Tryon novel), a 1971 horror novel by Tom Tryon * The Other (short story ...
, and 2.4% from two or more races.
Hispanic The term ''Hispanic'' ( es, hispano) refers to people, cultures Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior Social behavior is behavior Behavior (American English) or behaviour (British English; American and ...
or
Latino Latino or Latinos most often refers to: * Latino (demonym), a term used in the United States for people with cultural ties to Latin America * Hispanic and Latino Americans in the United States * The people or cultures of Latin America; ** Latin Am ...
people of any race were 26.7% of the population. There were 18,326 households, of which 35.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.5% were
married couples Marriage, also called matrimony or wedlock is a culturally and often legally recognized union between people called spouse A spouse is a significant other in a marriage (in certain contexts, it can also apply to a civil union or comm ...

married couples
living together, 12.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.4% were non-families. 29.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.59 and the average family size was 3.20. The median age in the city was 34.7 years. 27.6% of residents were under the age of 18; 8.7% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 26.7% were from 25 to 44; 23.9% were from 45 to 64; and 13% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.8% male and 50.2% female.


2000 census

As of the
census A census is the procedure of systematically calculating, acquiring and recording information Information is processed, organised and structured data Data (; ) are individual facts, statistics, or items of information, often numeric. In ...

census
of 2000, there were 42,940 people, 16,426 households, and 11,038 families living in the city. The
population density Population density (in agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary Image:Family watching television 1958.jpg, Exercise tr ...

population density
was 2,000.2 people per square mile (772.2/km2). There were 17,421 housing units at an average density of 811.5 per square mile (313.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 86.72%
White White is the lightest color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the Unite ...
, 0.42%
African American African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans) are an ethnic group An ethnic group or ethnicity is a grouping of people A people is any plurality of person A person (plural people or persons) is a being t ...
, 0.33%
Native American Native Americans may refer to: Ethnic groups * Indigenous peoples of the Americas, the pre-Columbian peoples of North and South America and their descendants * Native Americans in the United States * Indigenous peoples in Canada, the indigenous p ...
, 1.31%
Asian Asian may refer to: * Items from or related to the continent of Asia: ** Asian people, people in or descending from Asia ** Asian culture, the culture of the people from Asia ** Asian cuisine, food based on the style of food of the people from Asi ...
, 0.17%
Pacific Islander Pacific Islanders, Pacificer, Pasifika, or Pasefika, are the peoples of the Pacific Islands This is a list of islands in the Pacific Ocean, collectively called the Pacific Islands. Three major groups of island An island (or isle) ...
, 9.64% from
other races Other most often refers to: * Other (philosophy), a concept in psychology and philosophy Other or The Other may also refer to: Books * The Other (Tryon novel), ''The Other'' (Tryon novel), a 1971 horror novel by Tom Tryon * The Other (short story ...
, and 1.42% from two or more races.
Hispanic The term ''Hispanic'' ( es, hispano) refers to people, cultures Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior Social behavior is behavior Behavior (American English) or behaviour (British English; American and ...
or
Latino Latino or Latinos most often refers to: * Latino (demonym), a term used in the United States for people with cultural ties to Latin America * Hispanic and Latino Americans in the United States * The people or cultures of Latin America; ** Latin Am ...
people of any race were 15.94% of the population. There were 16,426 households, out of which 34.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.0% were
married couples Marriage, also called matrimony or wedlock is a culturally and often legally recognized union between people called spouse A spouse is a significant other in a marriage (in certain contexts, it can also apply to a civil union or comm ...

married couples
living together, 10.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.8% were non-families. 27.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.09. In the city, the population was spread out, with 27.0% under the age of 18, 9.5% from 18 to 24, 28.6% from 25 to 44, 20.8% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.0 males. The median income for a household in the city was $36,044, and the median income for a family was $43,197. Males had a median income of $28,925 versus $20,521 for females. The
per capita income Per capita income (PCI) or total income measures the average income earned per person in a given area (city, region, country, etc.) in a specified year. It is calculated by dividing the area's total income by its total population. Per capita i ...
for the city was $17,071. About 9.9% of families and 12.8% of the population were below the
poverty line The poverty threshold, poverty limit, poverty line or breadline is the minimum level of income In microeconomics, income is the Consumption (economics), consumption and saving opportunity gained by an entity within a specified timeframe, w ...
, including 16.7% of those under age 18 and 8.1% of those age 65 or over.


Environmental issues

Construction of a primary water detention cell for
flood control Flood control methods are used to reduce or prevent the detrimental effects of flood A flood is an overflow of water that submerges land that is usually dry. In the sense of "flowing water", the word may also be applied to the inflow of the ...
by the Central
Platte River The Platte River () is a major river in the State of Nebraska. It is about long; measured to its farthest source via its tributary, the North Platte River The North Platte River is a major tributary of the Platte River and is approximately ...

Platte River
Natural Resources District, the city of Grand Island, Hall County, and Merrick County has been delayed by the slow cleanup of burning grounds with buried and unexploded gravel mines on the grounds of the former Cornhusker Army Ammunition Plant. In 1981, a plume of contaminated groundwater was discovered beneath the plant area, which occupies 20 square miles west of Grand Island. The plume extended to northeast of the plant for about five miles and migrated towards Grand Island.
RDX RDX (abbreviation of "Research Department eXplosive" or "Royal Demolition eXplosive"), among other names (see the section Name A name is a term used for identification by an external observer. They can identify a class or category of things ...

RDX
was discovered at 371 parts per billion (ppb) and
TNT Trinitrotoluene (; TNT), or more specifically 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene, is a chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms from more ...

TNT
at 445 ppb on the plant site and just over 100 ppb off-site. The safe drinking water standard for RDX and TNT is only 2 ppb. Cornhusker had produced bombs and explosives during World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam War, and had been put on standby status in October 1973. During munitions production, wastewater contaminated with explosives, and explosives-contaminated mops, buckets, and other equipment were buried in 56 earthen surface impoundments. Dried solids were periodically scraped from the impoundments and taken to the burning grounds for incineration and burial. After the discovery of contaminated groundwater in 1981, the Army extended Grand Island city water lines to rural subdivisions (that as of 2014 are part of the Capital Heights and Le Heights areas) in 1985 because wells may have exposed residents to the contaminated water. In 1987, the Army burned about 40,000 tons of explosives-contaminated soil. In 1993, city water lines in northwest and north-central Grand Island were extended. In 1998, a pump-and-treat facility that continues to operate was built to cycle contaminated water through an explosives residue-removal system and discharge it as clean water into Silver Creek. The Army injected "hot spots" of contamination with a molasses-based substance containing bacteria present under the T&E Cattle Company feedlot to more quickly degrade RDX and TNT, which supposedly helped lower contamination levels. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the sites of bomb production lines (the so-called load line structures), were cleared and burned. , TNT is still present at 30 ppb, and 7 ppb for RDX in the hot spot under load line 1. , the most heavily-contaminated areas at Cornhusker are the burning grounds with buried and unexploded gravel mines. Their excavation proceeds very slowly, sifting one cubic yard at a time, because of the explosives' shock sensitivity. Excavation is expected to finish by January 2015, followed by environmental testing, estimated to take 24 to 36 months.


State Fair

In 2010 Grand Island became the home of the
Nebraska State Fair The Nebraska State Fair is the state fair of the U.S. state of Nebraska. It is held annually in Grand Island, Nebraska, Grand Island, approximately 100 miles west of the state capital of Lincoln, Nebraska, Lincoln, which hosted the fair until 2010 ...
.


Transportation

Interstate 80 Interstate 80 (I-80) is an east–west transcontinental freeway network. A controlled-access highway is a type of highway A highway is any public or private road A road is a thoroughfare, route, or way on land between two Locat ...
is located four miles south of the city. is the main north–south route in the city, running through the city's west edge south to
Hastings Hastings () is a seaside town A town is a human settlement. Towns are generally larger than villages and smaller than city, cities, though the criteria to distinguish between them vary considerably in different parts of the world. Origi ...
, and north to O'Neill.
U.S. Route 30 U.S. Route 30 or U.S. Highway 30 (US 30) is an east–west main route in the system of the United States Numbered Highways The United States Numbered Highway System (often called U.S. Routes or U.S. Highways) is an integrated networ ...
runs east–west through the center of Grand Island.
Central Nebraska Regional Airport Central Nebraska Regional Airport is three miles northeast of Grand Island, in Hall County, Nebraska. It is owned by the Hall County Airport Authority. The airport sees two airlines, Allegiant Air which flies independently and American Eagle (ai ...
is located in Grand Island. On September 4, 2008,
Allegiant Air Allegiant Air (usually shortened to Allegiant) is an American ultra-low cost airline A low-cost carrier or low-cost airline (occasionally referred to as ''no-frills'', ''budget'' or ''Discounts and allowances, discount carrier'' or ''airline ...

Allegiant Air
began nonstop service from Grand Island to
Las Vegas, Nevada Las Vegas (; Spanish language, Spanish for "The Meadows"), often known simply as Vegas, is the List of United States cities by population, 26th-most populous city in the United States, the most populous city in the U.S. state, state of Neva ...
. In June 2011,
American Eagle Airlines Envoy Air Inc. is an American regional airline headquartered Irving, Texas. The airline is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the American Airlines Group and it is paid by fellow group member American Airlines to staff, operate and maintain aircraft ...
began providing service to , twice daily. The city's transit system is entirely demand-responsive, with rides requiring reservation 24 hours in advance.


Radio stations

*
KRGI (AM) KRGI (1430 AM broadcasting, AM) is a radio station broadcasting a News Talk Information format. Licensed to Grand Island, Nebraska, United States, the station serves the Grand Island-Kearney area. The station is currently owned by Legacy Communic ...
1430 *LA GRAN D 93.3 *KRGI-FM 96.5 *KRGY FM 97.3 *KKJK FM 103.1 *KSYZ-FM 107.7


Hospitals

As of 2017, Grand Island was served by CHI Health St. Francis hospital, with 159 beds.


Education


School districts

* Grand Island Public Schools * Grand Island Northwest Public Schools


High schools

* Central Catholic High School (Grand Island, Nebraska), Central Catholic High School * Grand Island Senior High School (Nebraska), Grand Island Senior High School * Heartland Lutheran High School * Northwest High School (Grand Island, Nebraska), Northwest High School


Colleges

*Central Community College (Nebraska), Central Community College *Doane College


Notable people

* Edith Abbott, social worker * Grace Abbott, helped draft the Social Security Act * Rick Allen (sportscaster), Rick Allen, NASCAR commentator for NBC Sports * Parnelia Augustine, painter * Bil Baird, puppeteer * Bob O. Evans, Bo Evans, computer pioneer * Joe Feeney, tenor on ''The Lawrence Welk Show'' * Henry Fonda, Academy Award-winning film actor * Dick Cavett * Channing Hill, jockey * George J. Marrett, test pilot and author *G. P. Mix, two-time Lieutenant Governor of Idaho, lieutenant governor of Idaho * John Parrella, former NFL player * John Pedersen (arms designer), John Pedersen, arms designer * Tom Rathman, former NFL player * Rebecca Richards-Kortum, bioengineering professor and MacArthur Fellow * Jeff Richardson (infielder), Jeff Richardson, baseball player * Eve Ryder, artist * William Henry Thompson, former U.S. Senator from Nebraska * Edgar A. Wedgwood, sheriff of Hall County, Nebraska and state adjutant general, adjutant general of the Utah National Guard * Simeon Burt Wolbach, pathologist


See also

*Impact of the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic on the meat industry in the United States


References


External links


City of Grand Island

''The Grand Island Independent Newspaper''

Grand Island Public Library

Masonic Temple Building
{{Authority control Grand Island, Nebraska, 1872 establishments in Nebraska Cities in Nebraska County seats in Nebraska Forts in Nebraska, Post at Grand Island Grand Island micropolitan area Cities in Hall County, Nebraska Populated places established in 1872 Pre-statehood history of Nebraska French-American history of Nebraska