Clark County, Indiana

Clark County, Indiana
Clark County, Indiana
Clark County Courthouse Indiana 001.JPG
Clark County Courthouse in Jeffersonville, Indiana
Map of Indiana highlighting Clark County
Location in the state of Indiana
Map of the U.S. highlighting Indiana
Indiana's location in the U.S.
Founded 1801
Named for General George Rogers Clark
Seat Jeffersonville
Largest city Jeffersonville
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

376.45 sq mi (975 km²)
372.86 sq mi (966 km²)
3.60 sq mi (9 km²), 0.96%
 - (2010)
 - Density

294/sq mi (113.49/km²)
Congressional district 9th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Indiana county number 10

Clark County is a county located in the U.S. state of Indiana, located directly across the Ohio River from Louisville, Kentucky. At the 2010 Census, the population was 110,232.[1] The county seat is Jeffersonville.[2] Clarksville is also a major city in the county. Clark County is part of the Louisville/Jefferson County, KY–IN Metropolitan Statistical Area.



Clark County lies on the north bank of the Ohio River. A significant gateway to the state of Indiana, Clark County’s settlement began in 1783. The state of Virginia rewarded General George Rogers Clark and his regiment for their victorious capture of Forts Kaskaskia, Cahokia, and Vincennes from the British by granting them 150,000 acres (610 km2) of land. A small portion of this land, 1,000 acres (4.0 km2), became known as Clarksville, the first authorized American settlement in Northwest Territory, founded the next year in 1784.[3]

Clark County was formed 3 February 1801 from Knox County. Counties later formed all or in part from Clark County were: Crawford (1818), Decatur (1822), Fayette (1819), Floyd (1819), Franklin (1811), Harrison (1808), Jackson (1816), Jefferson (1811), Jennings (1817), Randolph (1818), Ripley (1816), Rush (1822), Scott (1820), Switzerland (1814), Union (1821), Washington (1814), and Wayne (1811).[4]

The first county seat and court was established in Springville, Indiana on April 7, 1801.[3] The platting of Jeffersonville occurred a year later and the county seat was fixed to Jeffersonville on June 9, 1802 by order of Governor William Henry Harrison. By December 14, 1810 the county seat changed for the third time to Charlestown and it would remain there until 1873. The county seat changed for one last time on September 23, 1873 and returned to Jeffersonville with then mayor Luther Warder campaigning for the county seats return.

From its beginning Clark County’s history, culture and growth has been linked to the development of the river. The use of the steamboat in the early nineteenth century to transport goods and services provided Clark County opportunities for commercial and industrial growth. In 1832, James Howard founded the Howard shipyards making Clark County a leader in ship building and bringing with it economic growth.[5]

The railroad brought further economic growth. Two railroad lines, the Monon, which spanned from New Albany to Chicago and the Jeffersonville, Madison, and Indianapolis railroad, provided Clark County and southern Indiana with access to the northern trading centers of Indianapolis and Chicago.

Industries locating to Clark County during the nineteenth century included the Louisville Cement Company in Speed, Indiana and the Ford Plate Glass Company established in Jeffersonville in 1876.

During the 1920s, Clark County attracted the Colgate-Palmolive Company to the Clarksville Riverfront. Colgate purchased the former Indiana Reformatory building in 1923. The Company rehabilitated and adapted the building for its dedication in 1924. They stayed in business until early 2008.[5]

Throughout the years of the Second World War, Clark County prospered. The United States began construction on the Indiana Arsenal near Charlestown in 1940.[5] Producing smokeless powder for the conflict overseas, the arsenal, at times, employed as many as 20,000. During the war, Howard shipyards was Commissioned by the Navy to produce landing craft. Later Howard shipyards reorganized as Jeffersonville Boat and Machine Company (Jeffboat) — a current major employer (1991).[5]

After World War II ended, Clark County as well as the United States experienced significant residential and commercial growth. The Interstate Highway System act of 1956 aided this growth. Because of the improved access and efficiency brought by the interstate system, especially Interstate 65, new development in the form of subdivisions and shopping centers located near these roads.

Clark County history has been closely associated with the development of the Ohio River. From its beginnings, Clark County relied on the river for economic opportunities. Clark County has diversified its economic base, lessened its dependency on the river, and continues to develop in new directions. However, the county still looks to the river as one link to its significant pioneer heritage.


According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 376.45 square miles (975.0 km2), of which 372.86 square miles (965.7 km2) (or 99.05%) is land and 3.60 square miles (9.3 km2) (or 0.96%) is water.[6]

Climate and weather

Jeffersonville, Indiana
Climate chart (explanation)
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[7]

In recent years, average temperatures in Jeffersonville have ranged from a low of 25 °F (−4 °C) in January to a high of 87 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −22 °F (−30 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 107 °F (42 °C) was recorded in July 1936. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 2.79 inches (71 mm) in October to 4.88 inches (124 mm) in May.[7]


The county government is a constitutional body, and is granted specific powers by the Constitution of Indiana, and by the Indiana Code.

County Council: The seven member county council is the legislative branch of the county government and controls all the spending and revenue collection in the county. Four representatives are elected from county districts, and three are elected at large. The council members serve four year terms. They are responsible for setting salaries, the annual budget, and special spending. The council also has limited authority to impose local taxes, in the form of an income and property tax that is subject to state level approval, excise taxes, and service taxes.[8][9]

Board of Commissioners: The executive body of the county is made of a board of commissioners. The commissioners are elected county-wide, in staggered terms, and each serves a four-year term. One of the commissioners, typically the most senior, serves as president. The commissioners are charged with executing the acts legislated by the council, collecting revenue, and managing the day-to-day functions of the county government.[8][9]

Courts: The Clark County Judicial System consists of 8 Courts:

Clark Circuit Court (Judge Daniel Moore) Clark Superior Court #1 (Judge Vicki Carmichael) Clark Superior Court #2 (Judge Jerome Jacobi) Clark Superior Court #3 (Judge Joe P. Weber) Jeffersonville City Court (Judge Ken Pierce) Charlestown City Court (Judge George Waters) Clarksville Town Court (Judge Samuel Gwin) Sellersburg Town Court (Judge Thomas Lowe)

By statute, the Circuit and Superior Courts have unlimited jurisdiction with the power to hear all civil and criminal cases. City and Town Courts have jurisdiction to hear Ordinance violations and misdemeanor prosecutions, as well as civil actions where the amount in controversy does not exceed five hundred dollars ($500). Judgments in the City and Town Courts may be appealed de novo to the Clark Circuit Court. In addition, Clark Superior Court #3 maintains a Small Claims Docket. Local Rules of Practice may also limit the ability of a Court to hear certain cases. Judgments in other Courts may be appealed to the Indiana Court of appeals or the Indiana Supreme Court.

The Circuit and Superior Court Judges are assisted by 2 Magistrates, who are appointed and serve at the direction of the elected Judges.

The Circuit and Superior Court Judges are elected on a partisan basis, must reside within the County, and serve six year terms. The City and Town Court Judges are elected on a partisan basis, must reside within the City/Town, and serve four year terms.

Felony and Misdemeanor prosecutions are filed by the Prosecuting Attorney, who is elected on a partisan basis, must reside within the County, and serves a term of four years. The current Prosecuting Attorney, Steven D. Stewart, has been in Office since 1989. [9]

County Officials: The county has several other elected offices, including prosecuting attorney, sheriff, coroner, auditor, treasurer, recorder, surveyor, and circuit court clerk. Each of these elected officers serves a term of four years and oversees a different part of county government. Members elected to county government positions are required to declare a party affiliation and to be residents of the county.[9]

Elected county officials

The Clark County building is located on Court Avenue in downtown Jeffersonville, and has a council of 7 elected officials. The Clark County Council includes:[10]

Clark County is part of Indiana's 9th congressional district; Indiana Senate districts 45 and 46;[11] and Indiana House of Representatives districts 66, 70, 71, 72 and 73.[12]

  • Barbara C. Hollis
  • Jackie Dickman
  • Jack Coffman (Vice President)
  • David Abbott (President)
  • landon howell
  • R Monty Snelling
  • Danny Yost
  • Scott Lewis (Attorney)

Clark County is part of Indiana's 9th congressional district and is represented in Congress by Republican Todd Young.[13]


There are three separate public school districts and the Archdiocese of Indianapolis that serve the entirety of Clark County. The county is also served by two colleges that offer associates to bachelors degrees.

Public school districts

Clarksville Community School Corp.[14]
  • Clarksville Senior High School
  • Clarksville Middle School
  • Greenacres Elementary School
  • George Rogers Clark Elementary School (Closed 05/2010)
West Clark Community School Corp.[15]
  • Silver Creek High School
  • Bordon Jr/Sr High School
  • Henryville Jr/Sr High School
  • Silver Creek Middle School
  • Bordon Elementary School
  • Henryville Elementary School
  • Silver Creek Elementary School
Greater Clark County Schools [16]
  • Charlestown High School
  • Jeffersonville High School
  • New Washington High School
  • Charlestown Middle School
  • New Washington Middle School
  • Parkview Middle School
  • River Valley Middle School
  • Bridgepoint Elementary School
  • Maple Elementary School
  • New Washington Elementary School
  • Northaven Elementary School
  • Parkwood Elementary School
  • Pleasant Ridge Elementary School
  • Riverside Elementary School
  • Spring Hill Elementary School
  • Thomas Jefferson Elementary School
  • Utica Elementary School
  • Wilson Elementary School
  • Options Alternative School
  • Corden Porter School

Private schools

Archdiocese of Indianapolis
  • Our Lady of Providence Junior-Senior High School [17]
  • St. Anthony of Padua Elementary School(K-7) [18]
  • Sacred Heart of Jesus (PK-8) [19]
  • St. Paul's School(K-6) [20]

Colleges and universities

  • Ivy Tech State College (Non-profit) [21]
  • Mid-America College of Funeral Services (Non-profit) [22]
  • Ottawa University - Jeffersonville (Non-Profit) [23]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1810 5,670
1820 8,709 53.6%
1830 10,686 22.7%
1840 14,595 36.6%
1850 15,828 8.4%
1860 20,502 29.5%
1870 24,770 20.8%
1880 28,610 15.5%
1890 30,259 5.8%
1900 31,835 5.2%
1910 30,260 −4.9%
1920 29,381 −2.9%
1930 30,764 4.7%
1940 31,020 0.8%
1950 48,330 55.8%
1960 62,795 29.9%
1970 75,876 20.8%
1980 88,838 17.1%
1990 87,774 −1.2%
2000 96,472 9.9%
2010 110,232 14.3%
Sources: United States Department of Commerce,
Bureau of the Census, Population Division[24]
Census Quickfacts[1]

As of the census[25] of 2000, there were 96,472 people, 38,751 households, and 26,544 families residing in the county. The population density was 257 people per square mile (99/km²). There were 41,176 housing units at an average density of 110 per square mile (42/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 90.30% White, 6.63% Black or African American, 0.26% Native American, 0.59% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.79% from other races, and 1.40% from two or more races. 1.86% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 23.7% were of German, 23.3% American, 11.9% Irish and 10.1% English ancestry according to Census 2000.

There were 38,751 households out of which 31.40% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.10% were married couples living together, 12.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.50% were non-families. 26.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.45 and the average family size was 2.95.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.20% under the age of 18, 9.00% from 18 to 24, 30.60% from 25 to 44, 23.80% from 45 to 64, and 12.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 94.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $40,111, and the median income for a family was $47,412. Males had a median income of $32,197 versus $24,033 for females. The per capita income for the county was $19,936. About 6.00% of families and 8.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.20% of those under age 18 and 7.50% of those age 65 or over.

See also


  1. ^ a b "Clark County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-09-17. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ a b "Clark County, Indiana Genealogical Records Information". Archived from the original on 2008-12-11. 
  4. ^ AniMap County Boundary Historical Atlas. (Gold Bug Software, Alamo, CA)
  5. ^ a b c d Clark County Government - History
  6. ^ "Census 2010 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-10-10. 
  7. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Jeffersonville, Indiana". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 
  8. ^ a b Indiana Code. "Title 36, Article 2, Section 3". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  9. ^ a b c d Indiana Code. "Title 2, Article 10, Section 2". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  10. ^ "Welcome To Clark County Government". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  11. ^ "Indiana Senate Districts". State of Indiana. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  12. ^ "Indiana House Districts". State of Indiana. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  13. ^ "Conressman Baron Hill". House.Gov. Retrieved 2008-09-12. 
  14. ^ "Clarksville Community Schools". 2009-07-16. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  15. ^ "West Clark Community Schools". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  16. ^ "Greater Clark County Schools". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  17. ^ "Welcome | Our Lady of Providence Junior-Senior High School". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  18. ^ "Welcome to St. Anthony of Padua Catholic School in Clarksville, Indiana". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  19. ^ "Home". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  20. ^ "St. Paul's Catholic School". 2006-10-12. Archived from the original on 2006-10-12. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  21. ^ "Ivy Tech Community College". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  22. ^ "Mid-America College of Funeral Service Education Mortuary Profession School Jeffersonville, Indiana". Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  23. ^ "Ottawa University - Ottawa University". 2009-01-09. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  24. ^ Forstall, Richard L. (editor) (1996). Population of states and counties of the United States: 1790 to 1990 : from the twenty-one decennial censuses. United States Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Population Division. pp. 50–53. ISBN 0-934213-48-8. 
  25. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

External links

Coordinates: 38°29′N 85°43′W / 38.48°N 85.72°W / 38.48; -85.72

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