Independence, Missouri

Independence, Missouri

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Independence is the fourth largest city in the U.S. state of Missouri
Missouri
Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

, and is contained within the counties of Jackson
Jackson County, Missouri
Jackson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Missouri. With a population of 674,158 in the 2010 census, Jackson County is the second most populous of Missouri's counties, after St. Louis County. Kansas City, the state's most populous city and focus city of the Kansas City Metropolitan...

 (primarily) and Clay. It is part of the Kansas City Metropolitan Area
Kansas City Metropolitan Area
The Kansas City Metropolitan Area is a fifteen-county metropolitan area that is anchored by Kansas City, Missouri and is bisected by the border between the states of Missouri and Kansas. As of the 2010 Census, the metropolitan area has a population of 2,035,334. The metropolitan area is the...

. In 2010, The city had a total population of 116,830 and is the county seat
County seat
A county seat is an administrative center, or seat of government, for a county or civil parish. The term is primarily used in the United States....

 of Jackson County, and is known as the "Queen City of the Trails" because it was a point of departure of the California
California Trail
The California Trail was an emigrant trail of about across the western half of the North American continent from Missouri River towns to what is now the state of California...

, Oregon
Oregon Trail
The Oregon Trail is a historic east-west wagon route that connected the Missouri River to valleys in Oregon and locations in between.After 1840 steam-powered riverboats and steamboats traversing up and down the Ohio, Mississippi and Missouri rivers sped settlement and development in the flat...

 and Santa Fe Trail
Santa Fe Trail
The Santa Fe Trail was a 19th-century transportation route through central North America that connected Missouri with Santa Fe, New Mexico. Pioneered in 1822 by William Becknell, it served as a vital commercial and military highway until the introduction of the railroad to Santa Fe in 1880...

s.

The city also played a pivotal role in the early history of the Latter Day Saint movement
Latter Day Saint movement
The Latter Day Saint movement is a group of independent churches tracing their origin to a Christian primitivist movement founded by Joseph Smith, Jr. in the late 1820s. Collectively, these churches have over 14 million members...

, and is home to the international headquarters of several Latter Day Saint denominations, most notably the Community of Christ
Community of Christ
The Community of Christ, known from 1872 to 2001 as the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints , is an American-based international Christian church established in April 1830 that claims as its mission "to proclaim Jesus Christ and promote communities of joy, hope, love, and peace"...

 (formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints), whose Temple
Independence Temple
The Temple in Independence, Missouri, is a house of worship and education "dedicated to the pursuit of peace". It dominates the skyline of Independence, Missouri, USA, and has become the focal point of the headquarters of the Community of Christ...

 is located there. Other Latter Day Saint denominations headquartered in the city include the Church of Christ (Temple Lot)
Church of Christ (Temple Lot)
The Church of Christ is a denomination of the Latter Day Saint movement headquartered in Independence, Missouri on what is known as the Temple Lot. Members of the church have been known colloquially as "Hedrickites", after Granville Hedrick, who was ordained as the church's first leader in July 1863...

 and the Church of Jesus Christ (Cutlerite)
Church of Jesus Christ (Cutlerite)
The Church of Jesus Christ is a denomination of the Latter Day Saint movement headquartered in Independence, Missouri. This church derives its epithet from its founder, Alpheus Cutler, a member of the Nauvoo High Council and of Joseph Smith's secretive Council of Fifty...

, among others. A number of Restoration Branches
Restoration Branches
The Restoration Branches movement is a Christian/Latter Day Saint religious sect which was formed in the 1980s by members of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in a reaction against the events of the RLDS 1984 world conference...

 are also located in and around Independence.

History


Independence was originally inhabited by Missouri and Osage
Osage Nation
The Osage Nation is a Native American Siouan-language tribe in the United States that originated in the Ohio River valley in present-day Kentucky. After years of war with invading Iroquois, the Osage migrated west of the Mississippi River to their historic lands in present-day Arkansas, Missouri,...

 Indians, followed by the Spanish and a brief French tenure. It became part of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase
The Louisiana Purchase was the acquisition by the United States of America of of France's claim to the territory of Louisiana in 1803. The U.S...

 of 1803. Lewis and Clark recorded in their journals that they stopped in 1804 to pick plums, raspberries, and wild apples at a site that would later form part of the city.

Independence was founded on March 29, 1827, and quickly became an important frontier
Frontier
A frontier is a political and geographical term referring to areas near or beyond a boundary. 'Frontier' was absorbed into English from French in the 15th century, with the meaning "borderland"--the region of a country that fronts on another country .The use of "frontier" to mean "a region at the...

 town. Independence was the farthest point westward on the Missouri River
Missouri River
The Missouri River flows through the central United States, and is a tributary of the Mississippi River. It is the longest river in North America and drains the third largest area, though only the thirteenth largest by discharge. The Missouri's watershed encompasses most of the American Great...

 where steamboats or other cargo vessels could travel, due to the convergence of the Kansas River
Kansas River
The Kansas River is a river in northeastern Kansas in the United States. It is the southwestern-most part of the Missouri River drainage, which is in turn the northwestern-most portion of the extensive Mississippi River drainage. Its name come from the Kanza people who once inhabited the area...

 with the Missouri River approximately six miles west of town, near the current Kansas
Kansas
Kansas is a US state located in the Midwestern United States. It is named after the Kansas River which flows through it, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native American tribe, which inhabited the area. The tribe's name is often said to mean "people of the wind" or "people of the south...

-Missouri border. Independence immediately became a jumping-off point for the emerging fur trade
Fur trade
The fur trade is a worldwide industry dealing in the acquisition and sale of animal fur. Since the establishment of world market for in the early modern period furs of boreal, polar and cold temperate mammalian animals have been the most valued...

, accommodating merchants and adventurers beginning the long trek westward on the Santa Fe Trail.

In 1831, members of the Latter Day Saint movement
Latter Day Saint movement
The Latter Day Saint movement is a group of independent churches tracing their origin to a Christian primitivist movement founded by Joseph Smith, Jr. in the late 1820s. Collectively, these churches have over 14 million members...

 began moving to the Jackson County, Missouri area. Shortly thereafter, founder Joseph Smith, Jr. declared a spot west of the Courthouse Square
Temple Lot
The Temple Lot, located in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, is the first site to be dedicated for the construction of a temple in the Latter Day Saint movement...

 to be the place for his prophesied temple of the New Jerusalem
New Jerusalem
In the book of Ezekiel, the Prophecy of New Jerusalem is Ezekiel's prophetic vision of a city to be established to the south of the Temple Mount that will be inhabited by the twelve tribes of Israel in the...

, in expectation of the Second Coming of Christ. Tension grew with local Missourians until the Latter Day Saints were driven from the area in 1833. Several branches of this movement gradually returned to the city, with many making their headquarters there. These include the Community of Christ
Community of Christ
The Community of Christ, known from 1872 to 2001 as the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints , is an American-based international Christian church established in April 1830 that claims as its mission "to proclaim Jesus Christ and promote communities of joy, hope, love, and peace"...

 (formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints), the Church of Christ (Temple Lot)
Church of Christ (Temple Lot)
The Church of Christ is a denomination of the Latter Day Saint movement headquartered in Independence, Missouri on what is known as the Temple Lot. Members of the church have been known colloquially as "Hedrickites", after Granville Hedrick, who was ordained as the church's first leader in July 1863...

 and the Restoration Branches
Restoration Branches
The Restoration Branches movement is a Christian/Latter Day Saint religious sect which was formed in the 1980s by members of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in a reaction against the events of the RLDS 1984 world conference...

.

Independence saw great prosperity from the late 1830s through the mid-1840s, while the business of outfitting pioneers boomed. Between 1848 and 1868, it was a hub of the California Trail
California Trail
The California Trail was an emigrant trail of about across the western half of the North American continent from Missouri River towns to what is now the state of California...

. On March 8, 1849, the Missouri General Assembly
Missouri General Assembly
The Missouri General Assembly is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Missouri. The bicameral General Assembly is composed of a 34-member Senate, and a 163-member House of Representatives. Members of both houses of the General Assembly are subject to term limits...

 granted a home-rule charter
Charter
A charter is the grant of authority or rights, stating that the granter formally recognizes the prerogative of the recipient to exercise the rights specified...

 to the town and on July 18, 1849, William McCoy was elected as its first mayor. In the mid-19th century an Act of the United States Congress
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C....

 defined Independence as the start of the Oregon Trail
Oregon Trail
The Oregon Trail is a historic east-west wagon route that connected the Missouri River to valleys in Oregon and locations in between.After 1840 steam-powered riverboats and steamboats traversing up and down the Ohio, Mississippi and Missouri rivers sped settlement and development in the flat...

.


Independence saw two important battles during the Civil War: the first
First Battle of Independence
-External links:** *...

 on August 11, 1862 when Confederate
Confederate States Army
The Confederate States Army was the army of the Confederate States of America while the Confederacy existed during the American Civil War. On February 8, 1861, delegates from the seven Deep South states which had already declared their secession from the United States of America adopted the...

 soldiers took control of the town, and the second
Second Battle of Independence
The Second Battle of Independence was a minor engagement of the American Civil War October 21–22, 1864 centered in Independence, Missouri, with some of the fiercest fighting taking place at the present-day United Nations Peace Plaza; the "Harry Truman" Railroad Depot; George Caleb Bingham's...

 in October 1864, which also resulted in a Southern victory. The war took its toll on Independence and the town was never able to regain its previous prosperity, although a flurry of building activity took place soon after the war. The rise of nearby Kansas City
Kansas City, Missouri
Kansas City, Missouri is the largest city in the U.S. state of Missouri and is the anchor city of the Kansas City Metropolitan Area, the second largest metropolitan area in Missouri. It encompasses in parts of Jackson, Clay, Cass, and Platte counties...

 also contributed to the town's relegation to a place of secondary prominence in Jackson County, though Independence has retained its position as county seat until the present day.

United States President Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman was the 33rd President of the United States . As President Franklin D. Roosevelt's third vice president and the 34th Vice President of the United States , he succeeded to the presidency on April 12, 1945, when President Roosevelt died less than three months after beginning his...

 grew up in Independence, and in 1922 was elected judge of the county Court of Jackson County, Missouri (an administrative, not judicial, post). Although he was defeated for reelection in 1924, he won back the office in 1926 and was reelected in 1930. Truman performed his duties diligently, and won personal acclaim for several popular public works projects, including an extensive series of fine roads for the growing use of automobiles, the building of a new County Court building in Independence, and a series of 12 Madonna of the Trail
Madonna of the Trail
Madonna of the Trail is a series of 12 monuments dedicated to the spirit of pioneer women in the United States. The monuments were commissioned by the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution...

 monuments to pioneer women dedicated across the country in 1928 and 1929. He would later return to the city after two terms as President. His wife, First Lady
First Lady of the United States
First Lady of the United States is the title of the hostess of the White House. Because this position is traditionally filled by the wife of the president of the United States, the title is most often applied to the wife of a sitting president. The current first lady is Michelle Obama.-Current:The...

 Bess Truman
Bess Truman
Bess Truman , was the wife of Harry S. Truman and First Lady of the United States from 1945 to 1953.-Early life:...

, was born and raised in Independence, and both are buried there. The Harry S. Truman National Historic Site
Harry S. Truman National Historic Site
The Harry S. Truman National Historic Site preserves both the family farm and the longtime home of Harry S. Truman , 33rd President of the United States...

 (Truman's home) and the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum
Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum
The Harry S Truman Library and Museum is dedicated to preserving papers, books, and other historical materials relating to the 33rd President of the United States Harry S Truman. It is located on a small hill facing U.S...

 are both located in Independence, as is one of Truman's boyhood residences.

Independence continues to be of great importance to the Latter Day Saint movement and is the headquarters of the Community of Christ, the second-largest denomination in the Latter Day Saint movement. This church has built a temple in Independence
Independence Temple
The Temple in Independence, Missouri, is a house of worship and education "dedicated to the pursuit of peace". It dominates the skyline of Independence, Missouri, USA, and has become the focal point of the headquarters of the Community of Christ...

, and also maintains a large auditorium
Auditorium (Community of Christ)
The Auditorium is a house of worship and office building located on the greater Temple Lot in Independence, Missouri...

 and other buildings nearby. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints operates a sizable visitors' center adjacent to the Community of Christ Temple, which is located directly across the street from the original Temple Lot
Temple Lot
The Temple Lot, located in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, is the first site to be dedicated for the construction of a temple in the Latter Day Saint movement...

 designated by Joseph Smith in 1830. The Lot itself is occupied by a small white-frame church building that serves as the headquarters and local meeting house for the Church of Christ (Temple Lot).

Geography


Independence is located at 39°4′47"N 94°24′24"W (39.079805, -94.406551). It lies on the south bank of the Missouri River, near the western edge of the state. According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the city has a total area of 78.4 square miles (203.2 km²), of which, 78.3 square miles (202.9 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.3 km²) of it (0.17%) is water.

Demographics


As of the census of 2000, there were 113,288 people, 47,390 households, and 30,566 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,446.3 people per square mile (558.4/km²). There were 50,213 housing units at an average density of 641.1 per square mile (247.5/km²). Independence has a population of 111,806 in 1980 and 112,301 in 1990. The racial makeup of the city was 91.87% White, 2.59% African American, 0.70% Asian, 0.64% Native American, 0.46% Pacific Islander, 1.43% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 2.31% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.69% of the population.

There were 47,390 households out of which 28.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.9% were married couples living together, 12.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.5% were non-families. 30.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.93.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.9% under the age of 18, 8.7% from 18 to 24, 28.9% from 25 to 44, 23.0% from 45 to 64, and 15.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 91.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.3 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $38,012, and the median income for a family was $45,876. Males had a median income of $34,138 versus $25,948 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,384. About 6.4% of families and 8.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.8% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.

Schools



Four school districts have areas within the city: Independence
Independence Public School District
Independence Public School District is a school district headquartered in Independence, Missouri, United States. The district serves most of Independence and Sugar Creek.-Superintendent:...

, Blue Springs
Blue Springs R-IV School District
The Blue Springs R-IV School District is a school district that serves Blue Springs, Missouri in the State of Missouri. The district has an enrollment of over 13,000 students.-Schools:Elementary*Chapel Lakes Elementary School...

, Fort Osage
Fort Osage R-1 School District
The Fort Osage R-1 School District is a public school district located in Independence, Missouri. The district includes the Early Childhood Center, Cler-Mont Elementary, Elm Grove Elementary, Blue Hills Elementary, Indian Trails Elementary, Buckner Elementary, Fire Prairie Middle School, Osage...

 Schools, and Raytown. Four public high schools are located within the city limits: Fort Osage High School
Fort Osage High School
Fort Osage Senior High School is a high school located at 2101 N. Twyman Rd. in Independence, Missouri, belonging to the Fort Osage R-1 School District. It currently serves approximately 1,500 students from grades 9-12...

, Truman High School, Van Horn High School
Van Horn High School
Van Horn High School is a comprehensive high school located at 1109 Arlington in Independence, Missouri, United States. It is part of the Independence School District.- School Background :...

, and William Chrisman High School
William Chrisman High School
William Chrisman High School is a high school located in Independence, Missouri as part of the Independence School District. The school was founded in 1888 and was originally known as Independence High School. The first building was located at the intersection of Pleasant and Truman Road, the...

; and two private high schools: St. Mary's High School
St. Mary's High School (Independence, Missouri)
St. Mary's Bundschu Memorial High School is a private, Roman Catholic high school in Independence, Missouri. It is located in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-Saint Joseph.-Student life:...

 and Center Place Restoration school.

Prior to Fall 2008, parts of western Independence in the Van Horn feeder pattern resided in the Kansas City, Missouri School District
Kansas City, Missouri School District
Kansas City, Missouri School District, or KCMSD is a school district headquartered at 1211 McGee Street in Downtown Kansas City, Missouri.- Boundaries:The school district primarily serves residents within Kansas City....

, but all of these students are now part of the Independence school district.

Colleges and universities

  • Blue River Community College
    Metropolitan Community College (Kansas City)
    Metropolitan Community College is a community college system in Missouri, United States. The system consists of five separate campuses located in Kansas City, Independence, and Lee's Summit. The five campuses have a total enrollment of over 21,000 students per semester...

    , part of the Metropolitan Community College
    Metropolitan Community College (Kansas City)
    Metropolitan Community College is a community college system in Missouri, United States. The system consists of five separate campuses located in Kansas City, Independence, and Lee's Summit. The five campuses have a total enrollment of over 21,000 students per semester...

     system.
  • Graceland University
    Graceland University
    Graceland is not ranked by U.S. News & World Report, being deemed a Tier 3 institution. It is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission as a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.-Housing System:...

    , Independence campus. Main campus is in Lamoni, Iowa
    Lamoni, Iowa
    -Demographics:As of the census of 2000, there were 2,444 people, 818 households, and 428 families residing in the city. The population density was 761.1 people per square mile . There were 904 housing units at an average density of 281.5 per square mile...

    .

Libraries


  • Midwest Genealogy Center, the largest stand-alone public genealogy
    Genealogy
    Genealogy is the study of families and the tracing of their lineages and history. Genealogists use oral traditions, historical records, genetic analysis, and other records to obtain information about a family and to demonstrate kinship and pedigrees of its members...

     research library in America.
  • The Center for the Study of the Korean War, the largest Korean War
    Korean War
    The Korean War was a conventional war between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China , with military material aid from the Soviet Union...

     archive in the U.S., at Graceland University.
  • Merrill J. Mattes Research Library, largest public research library in the U.S. focused on the Overland Trails, and the settlement of the American West. Located at the National Frontier Trails Museum.
  • Truman Library Research Center, at the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum
    Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum
    The Harry S Truman Library and Museum is dedicated to preserving papers, books, and other historical materials relating to the 33rd President of the United States Harry S Truman. It is located on a small hill facing U.S...

    .
  • Jackson County Historical Society Archives & Research Library.
  • Mid-Continent Public Library
    Mid-Continent Public Library
    Mid-Continent Public Library is a consolidated public library system serving Clay, Platte, and Jackson Counties in Missouri, with headquarters in Independence, Missouri...

     operates two general library branches in Independence.
  • Kansas City Public Library
    Kansas City Public Library
    The Kansas City Public Library is a public system headquartered in the Central Library in Kansas City, Missouri.The system operates its Central Branch and neighborhood branches located in Kansas City, Independence, and Sugar Creek...

     operates the Trails West Branch in Independence.

Newspapers

  • The Examiner
    The Examiner (Independence)
    The Examiner is the daily newspaper of eastern Jackson County, Missouri, including Independence and Blue Springs.The Examiner was first published in 1898 by Col. William Southern...

    , Eastern Jackson County's daily newspaper. It is also referred to as The Independence Examiner.
  • The Kansas City Star
    The Kansas City Star
    The Kansas City Star is a McClatchy newspaper based in Kansas City, Missouri, in the United States. Published since 1880, the paper is the recipient of eight Pulitzer Prizes...


Television

  • KSMO-TV
    KSMO-TV
    KSMO-TV, virtual channel 62, is the MyNetworkTV-affiliated television station for the Kansas City Metropolitan Area licensed to the Missouri side. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 47 from a transmitter in Independence, Missouri...

     62 - My Network TV affiliate operates a transmitter tower in western Independence, south of MO-12/Truman Rd.

Culture


Santa-Cali-Gon Days is an annual Labor Day
Labor Day
Labor Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September that celebrates the economic and social contributions of workers.-History:...

 festival held in Independence intermittently since 1940 and continuously since 1973, celebrating the city's heritage as a starting point of three major frontier trails: the Santa Fe
Santa Fe Trail
The Santa Fe Trail was a 19th-century transportation route through central North America that connected Missouri with Santa Fe, New Mexico. Pioneered in 1822 by William Becknell, it served as a vital commercial and military highway until the introduction of the railroad to Santa Fe in 1880...

, California
California Trail
The California Trail was an emigrant trail of about across the western half of the North American continent from Missouri River towns to what is now the state of California...

 and Oregon
Oregon Trail
The Oregon Trail is a historic east-west wagon route that connected the Missouri River to valleys in Oregon and locations in between.After 1840 steam-powered riverboats and steamboats traversing up and down the Ohio, Mississippi and Missouri rivers sped settlement and development in the flat...

. Another popular annual festival is the Vaile Strawberry Festival, which is held on the first Saturday of June at the Vaile Mansion, 1500 N. Liberty, five blocks north of the historic Square. The Independence Heritage Festival is a celebration of the diverse culture that exist in Independence. The Independence town square features numerous family-owned shops surrounding the old main courthouse in Independence
Jackson County Courthouse (Independence, Missouri)
The Jackson County Courthouse in Independence, Missouri is located on Independence Square at Main & Maple Street in Independence....

, which was modeled after Philadelphia's Independence Hall. This courthouse houses Harry S. Truman's former courtroom and office, and his home.

Museums

  • National Frontier Trails Museum, 318 W. Pacific: Museum and interpretive center dedicated to the history of the Overland Trails and the settlement of the American West.  Independence, also known as the Queen City of the Trails, hosted thousands of settlers, pioneers, soldiers and merchants as they prepared to cross the plans along one of three trails: the Santa Fe, California, and Oregon.  The museum offers film, a children's activity room, artifacts, journal entries, maps, and covered wagons, among other highlights.
  • Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum
    Harry S. Truman Presidential Library and Museum
    The Harry S Truman Library and Museum is dedicated to preserving papers, books, and other historical materials relating to the 33rd President of the United States Harry S Truman. It is located on a small hill facing U.S...

    : Official library of the 33rd U.S. President located at 500 U. S. 24 Highway. Hailed as America's "best presidential museum" by the Dallas Morning News, the Truman Library offers theaters, a museum, store, and interactive hands-on exhibits together with a Decision Theater. The museum contains a colorful mural by Thomas Hart Benton
    Thomas Hart Benton (painter)
    Thomas Hart Benton was an American painter and muralist. Along with Grant Wood and John Steuart Curry, he was at the forefront of the Regionalist art movement. His fluid, almost sculpted paintings showed everyday scenes of life in the United States...

    , together with a reproduction of the Oval Office.  The courtyard contains the graves of Harry, Bess and their daughter Margaret.  The museum seeks to educate patrons about the major world-shaping decisions that Truman was involved in as President, together with details of his personal life.  The lower level offers an area where children can dress up like Harry and Bess, explore "feely" boxes, engage in an interactive computerized race, sort mail, make campaign buttons and posters and play a trivia game.
  • Leila's Hair Museum, 1333 S. Noland Road: Museum of Victorian-era art of hair jewelry and wreaths. The Hair Museum, believed to be the only one of its kind in the world, houses over 350 hair "wreaths" and 1,500 pieces of artwork or jewelry made partially or completely out of human hair.
  • Puppetry Arts Institute, 11025 E. Winner Road: Home to hundreds of puppets and marionettes from around the world and features a collection from the world's largest puppet factory in neighboring Kansas City, owned and operated by famous puppeteer Hazelle Rollins. Visitors can also watch a movie, use the puppet resource library and see changing displays. Children can choose a puppet head from the now-closed factory inventory, paint it with professional puppet paint, attach a body, and stage an impromptu performance on one of the institute's stages. Monthly professional puppet shows are also offered.
  • Harry S Truman Home National Historic Site, 223 N. Main. The Truman home is operated by the National Park Service. It allows visitors to see how President Truman and his wife, Bess, lived in their simple but comfortable "Summer White House". Left just as it was when the Trumans lived there, you'll see their dishes on the table, books and records on the shelf, and Harry's hat, coat and cane in the front entry.
  • 1859 Jail, Marshal's Home and Museum, 217 N. Main. The dungeon-like cells of the 1859 Jail housed thousands of prisoners during the bloodiest period of Jackson County's history. Some of its famous guests included Frank James
    Frank James
    Alexander Franklin "Frank" James was a famous American outlaw. He was the older brother of outlaw Jesse James.-Childhood:...

     and William Clark Quantrill.  Part of the exhibit details how the local marshal and his family lived in the adjoining Federal brick two-story home. An 1870's-era schoolhouse and museum completes the site. A "historic homes combo" discount ticket is available for use with the Bingham-Waggoner Estate and the Vaile Mansion. Closed for the winter from January through March.
  • Bingham-Waggoner Estate, 313 W. Pacific. Built in 1852 along the Santa Fe Trail
    Santa Fe Trail
    The Santa Fe Trail was a 19th-century transportation route through central North America that connected Missouri with Santa Fe, New Mexico. Pioneered in 1822 by William Becknell, it served as a vital commercial and military highway until the introduction of the railroad to Santa Fe in 1880...

    , this magnificent home was owned by famous American Civil War
    American Civil War
    The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

     artist George Caleb Bingham
    George Caleb Bingham
    George Caleb Bingham was an American artist whose paintings of American life in the frontier lands along the Missouri River exemplify the Luminist style. Left to languish in obscurity, Bingham's work was rediscovered in the 1930s...

     and later belonged to the Waggoner family, founders of the Waggoner-Gates Mill. Extensively renovated in the 1890s, many furnishings and accessories from the era may be seen in the home. A gift shop is located in the carriage house. Closed for the winter from January through March. *Chicago and Alton Depot, 318 W. Pacific. Built in 1879, this wooden depot is believed to be the oldest two-story frame railroad depot remaining in Missouri. Filled with hundreds of railroad artifacts, it also served as the living quarters for the station master and his family on the upper level, which is furnished with period treasures. Closed January–March.
  • Vaile Mansion, 1500 N. Liberty. This thirty-room mansion was built by frontier business tycon Harvey Vaile in 1881. Recognized as one of the finest examples of Second Empire Victorian architecture in the U.S., the opulent estate boasted conveniences such as flushing toilets, a built-in 6,000 gallon water tank, painted woodwork and ceilings and nine different marble fireplaces. Closed for the winter from January through March.
  • Community of Christ International Headquarters. The Temple, at 201 S. River, and The Auditorium, across the street at 1001 W. Walnut, serve as world headquarters for this Christian denomination of a quarter-million members. Tours of the Temple and Auditorium are free, and organ concerts on world class organs are held daily in summer, and on Sundays from Labor day through Memorial Day.  The site also offers a theater, sacred artwork and a meditation garden. The Children's Peace Pavilion in the Auditorium is a free hands-on interactive museum for children.
  • LDS Visitors Center
    LDS Visitors Center, Independence, Missouri
    The LDS "Mormon" Visitors Center, Independence, Missouri is one of the more notable visitors centers owned and operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints owing to its placement on the Latter Day Saint Greater Temple Lot dedicated and purchased by Joseph Smith, Jr...

    , 937 W. Walnut. Describes the roles played by Latter-day Saints during the early and tempestuous history of Independence. Offers flat screen visual presentations showing the arrival of early Saints, revelations, and their pioneer lives. Also offers rare artifacts and exhibits documenting the history and beliefs of modern Saints, known as Mormons. Free guided tours daily.

Sports


Blue River Community College
Metropolitan Community College (Kansas City)
Metropolitan Community College is a community college system in Missouri, United States. The system consists of five separate campuses located in Kansas City, Independence, and Lee's Summit. The five campuses have a total enrollment of over 21,000 students per semester...

 features a soccer program with a men's team and women's team. The Trailblazers (men) went all the way to the NJCAA Region 16 semifinals before concluding their season. The Lady Trailblazers (women) finished as runners up in the region. The Independence Events Center is home of the Missouri Mavericks
Missouri Mavericks
The Missouri Mavericks are an ice hockey team in the Central Hockey League. They play in Independence, Missouri, USA, located near Kansas City, Missouri, at the Independence Events Center.-History:...

, a Central Hockey League
Central Hockey League
The Central Hockey League is a mid-level professional hockey league, owned by Global Entertainment Corporation. Its current champions are the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs, which defeated the Colorado Eagles four games to three in the 2011 playoffs....

 mid-level professional hockey
Ice hockey
Ice hockey, often referred to as hockey, is a team sport played on ice, in which skaters use wooden or composite sticks to shoot a hard rubber puck into their opponent's net. The game is played between two teams of six players each. Five members of each team skate up and down the ice trying to take...

 team.

Local recreational sports teams include:
  • Pop Warner Little Scholars
    Pop Warner Little Scholars
    Pop Warner Little Scholars is a non-profit organization that provides youth football, cheerleading, and dance programs for participants in 43 U.S. states and several countries around the world. It is headquartered in Langhorne, Pennsylvania...

  • American Legion Baseball
    American Legion Baseball
    American Legion Baseball is a variety of amateur baseball played by teenage boys in 50 states in the USA. More than five thousand teams participate each year. The American Legion Department of South Dakota established the program in 1925 at Milbank, South Dakota...


YMCA and Parks and Recreation have programs for various sports for all people.

Sister city


Independence has the following Sister city
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

: Higashimurayama, Japan
There is a street in Independence south of Truman Rd. between Memorial Dr. and Lynn St. (between City Hall and the Independence Square, west of Noland Rd.) called Higashimurayama.

Highways and roads

  • Interstate 70 - Major east/west interstate highway, connecting Independence to Kansas City
    Kansas City, Missouri
    Kansas City, Missouri is the largest city in the U.S. state of Missouri and is the anchor city of the Kansas City Metropolitan Area, the second largest metropolitan area in Missouri. It encompasses in parts of Jackson, Clay, Cass, and Platte counties...

    , Columbia
    Columbia, Missouri
    Columbia is the fifth-largest city in Missouri, and the largest city in Mid-Missouri. With a population of 108,500 as of the 2010 Census, it is the principal municipality of the Columbia Metropolitan Area, a region of 164,283 residents. The city serves as the county seat of Boone County and as the...

    , and St. Louis
    St. Louis, Missouri
    St. Louis is an independent city on the eastern border of Missouri, United States. With a population of 319,294, it was the 58th-largest U.S. city at the 2010 U.S. Census. The Greater St...

  • Interstate 470
    Interstate 470 (Missouri)
    Interstate 470 is a loop of the Interstate Highway System that serves to link southeast Kansas City to Independence via Lee's Summit in Jackson County, Missouri. The western terminus of the freeway is at the Grandview Triangle interchange while the northern terminus is an cloverleaf interchange...

     - Follows MO-291 starting at 39th St./I-70 south into Lee's Summit
  • U.S. Route 24 - A major east/west U.S. highway that links Independence with Kansas City and Buckner
    Buckner, Missouri
    Buckner is a city in Jackson County, Missouri, United States. The population was 2,725 at the 2000 census.-Geography:Buckner is located at . According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of , all of it land....

    , and forms part of Independence's northern border with Sugar Creek
    Sugar Creek, Missouri
    Sugar Creek is a city in Clay and Jackson counties in the U.S. state of Missouri. The population was 3,839 at the 2000 census.-Geography:Sugar Creek is located at ....

    . It passes through the Fairmount Business District, by the Truman Presidential Library and Museum, by William Chrisman High School, and north of the Independence Square. Parts of U.S. 24 are known as Winner Road, and Independence Avenue.
  • U.S. Route 40 - Connects Independence with Lee's Summit, Lake Tapawingo
    Lake Tapawingo, Missouri
    Lake Tapawingo is a city in Jackson County, Missouri, United States. The population was 843 at the 2000 census.-Geography:Lake Tapawingo is located at ....

    , and Blue Springs
    Blue Springs, Missouri
    Blue Springs is a city in Jackson County, Missouri and is a satellite city of Kansas City, Missouri. As of the 2010 census the population at 52,575.- Geography :...

    , and forms part of Independence's southern border with Kansas City.
  • Route 7 - Links U.S. 24 and Twyman Road (near Fort Osage High School) with Blue Springs, and passes by the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant
    Lake City Army Ammunition Plant
    Lake City Army Ammunition Plant is a government-owned, contractor-operated facility in Independence, Missouri that was established by Remington Arms in 1941 to manufacture and test small caliber ammunition for the U.S. Army. The facility has remained in continuous operation except for one 5-year...

    .
  • Route 12 is a short highway that connects the Independence Square to I-435 in Kansas City, and is commonly known as Truman Rd.
  • Route 78 is an east/west highway that links Kansas City to MO-7, near the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant. Parts of MO-78 are known as 23rd St. (formerly E. Alton St.), and Lake City-Buckner Road.
  • Route 291 - A minor north/south freeway, once designated as U.S. Route 71 Bypass, that links Independence to Lee's Summit, Sugar Creek, and Liberty
    Liberty, Missouri
    Liberty is a city in Clay County, Missouri and is a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri. At the 2007 population estimate, the city population was 29,993...

    . The Liberty Bend Bridge
    Liberty Bend Bridge
    The Liberty Bend Bridge is the common name for the two cantilever truss bridges on Route 291 over the Missouri River in Sugar Creek, Missouri in the Kansas City metropolitan area....

     carries the highway across the Missouri River
    Missouri River
    The Missouri River flows through the central United States, and is a tributary of the Mississippi River. It is the longest river in North America and drains the third largest area, though only the thirteenth largest by discharge. The Missouri's watershed encompasses most of the American Great...

    . I-470 carries the highway from I-70 south into Lee's Summit. Part of the former alignment, known as Old 71 Bypass, is a street in the Bass Pro area.
  • Truman Road
    Truman Road
    Truman Road, Truman, or 15th Street is a major east/west road in Jackson County, Missouri. It serves Kansas City, Missouri, Independence, and eastern unincorporated Jackson County. Its western terminus is at Broadway Boulevard & I-670 in downtown Kansas City, and its eastern terminus is at the...

     is a major arterial street that connects Independence with downtown Kansas City, and eastern unincorporated Jackson County. It passes by Van Horn High School, through the Maywood Business District, by President Harry S. Truman's house, and the Independence Square. Truman Road enters Independence with MO-12, and exits with State Route FF.

Transportation

  • Amtrak Station
    Independence (Amtrak station)
    The Independence Amtrak station, also known as Missouri Pacific Depot, is a train station in Independence, Missouri, United States served by Amtrak, the national railroad passenger system. The station was originally built in 1913 by the Missouri Pacific Railroad, and is also known as the "Truman...

  • Kansas City Area Transportation Authority
    Kansas City Area Transportation Authority
    Kansas City Area Transportation Authority is a public transit operator in Kansas City, Missouri. It is the operator of the Metro Area Express Bus Rapid Transit service and 69 Local Bus routes in Cass, Clay, Jackson and Platte Counties in Missouri and Johnson, Leavenworth and Wyandotte Counties in...

     (KCATA)

Utilities


Independence Power & Light (IPL) is a local electric power plant owned and operated by the city. It was established in 1901 and has undergone many changes and upgrades. One change was moving from the old Dodgion Street plant (where the Roger T. Sermon Center stands now) to the Blue Valley Plant near Truman Rd. and MO-78/Lake City-Buckner Rd. IPL also draws power from other sources: the Missouri City
Missouri City, Missouri
Missouri City is a city in Clay County, Missouri, United States. The population was 295 at the 2000 census.-History:Missouri City was originally named Atchison. The earliest known use of the name was on a deed to a building from 1820. The land was possessed by French fur traders Antoine Laffond...

 Power Plant, and the Kansas City Power and Light Company
Kansas City Power and Light Company
.Kansas City Power and Light Company is an electric utility company serving the Kansas City metropolitan area. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Great Plains Energy Incorporated of which it is the biggest component. The company traces its roots to November 1881 when Joseph S...

 (KCP&L), through several 69 and 161 kilovolt transmission interconnections. IPL has an "Out of Sight" power line burial program. After signing an agreement with TradeWind Energy in July, 2008, IPL will begin purchasing annually 15 megawatts of renewable energy from the Smoky Hills Wind Farm
Smoky Hills Wind Farm
The Smoky Hills Wind Farm is a 100.8 megawatt wind farm in Lincoln and Ellsworth Counties, 140 miles west of Topeka in Kansas, north of Ellsworth. The farm is operated by Enel Green Power. Highway K-14 and Interstate 70 pass through parts of the wind farm, with clear views of many of the wind...

 (a wind turbine facility) in Kansas.

Famous residents

  • Forrest "Phog" Allen
    Phog Allen
    Forrest Clare "Phog" Allen was an American basketball and baseball player, coach of American football, basketball, and baseball, college athletics administrator, and osteopathic physician...

     - KU
    University of Kansas
    The University of Kansas is a public research university and the largest university in the state of Kansas. KU campuses are located in Lawrence, Wichita, Overland Park, and Kansas City, Kansas with the main campus being located in Lawrence on Mount Oread, the highest point in Lawrence. The...

     Basketball Coach
  • George Caleb Bingham
    George Caleb Bingham
    George Caleb Bingham was an American artist whose paintings of American life in the frontier lands along the Missouri River exemplify the Luminist style. Left to languish in obscurity, Bingham's work was rediscovered in the 1930s...

     - famous 19th century American artist
  • Jim Butcher
    Jim Butcher
    Jim Butcher is a New York Times Best Selling author most known for his contemporary fantasy book series The Dresden Files. He also wrote the Codex Alera series. Butcher grew up as the only son of his parents, and has two older sisters. He currently lives in Independence with his wife, Shannon K...

    , New York Times Best Selling
    New York Times Best Seller list
    The New York Times Best Seller list is widely considered the preeminent list of best-selling books in the United States. It is published weekly in The New York Times Book Review magazine, which is published in the Sunday edition of The New York Times and as a stand-alone publication...

     author
  • Teresa Carpenter
    Teresa Carpenter
    Teresa Carpenter is a Pulitzer prize winning, bestselling American author. She was born in Independence, Missouri, and lives with her husband Steven Levy in New York's Greenwich Village.-Awards:...

    , Pulitzer Prize
    Pulitzer Prize
    The Pulitzer Prize is a U.S. award for achievements in newspaper and online journalism, literature and musical composition. It was established by American publisher Joseph Pulitzer and is administered by Columbia University in New York City...

    -winning journalist
  • Margaret Truman Daniel, daughter of Harry and Bess Truman
  • Jim Eisenreich
    Jim Eisenreich
    James Michael Eisenreich is an American former Major League Baseball player with a 15-year career from 1982–1984 and 1987–1998. He played for the Minnesota Twins and Kansas City Royals of the American League, and the Philadelphia Phillies, Florida Marlins and Los Angeles Dodgers of the National...

    , retired Major League Baseball veteran.
  • Paul Henning
    Paul Henning
    Paul William Henning was an American producer and writer. Most famous for the successful TV sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies, he was crucial in the development of several "rural" comedies for CBS.-Early life:...

    , Created The Beverly Hillbillies
    The Beverly Hillbillies
    The Beverly Hillbillies is an American situation comedy originally broadcast for nine seasons on CBS from 1962 to 1971, starring Buddy Ebsen, Irene Ryan, Donna Douglas, and Max Baer, Jr....

    , Green Acres
    Green Acres
    Green Acres is an American television series starring Eddie Albert and Eva Gabor as a couple who move from New York City to a country farm...

    , Petticoat Junction
    Petticoat Junction
    Petticoat Junction is an American situation comedy produced by Filmways which originally aired on CBS from 1963 to 1970. The series is one of three interrelated shows about rural characters created by Paul Henning; the others are The Beverly Hillbillies and Green Acres.The setting for the series...

  • Arliss Howard
    Arliss Howard
    Arliss Howard is an American actor, writer and film director.-Life and career:Howard was born in Independence, Missouri in 1954, and graduated from Truman High School and Columbia College at Columbia, Missouri. Howard established his career with stand-out roles in Full Metal Jacket and Ruby...

    , actor in the movie Full Metal Jacket
    Full Metal Jacket
    Full Metal Jacket is a 1987 war film produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick. It is an adaptation of the 1979 novel The Short-Timers by Gustav Hasford and stars Matthew Modine, Vincent D'Onofrio, R. Lee Ermey, Arliss Howard and Adam Baldwin. The film follows a platoon of U.S...

    and on the TV shows Rubicon
    Rubicon (tv series)
    Rubicon is an American television series created by Jason Horwitch and produced by Henry Bromell that was broadcast on the AMC television network...

    and Medium
    Medium (TV series)
    Medium is an American television drama series that premiered on NBC on January 3, 2005, and ended on CBS on January 21, 2011. Themed on supernatural gifts, its lead character, Allison DuBois , is a medium employed as a consultant for the Phoenix, Arizona district attorney's office...

  • Betty Lennox
    Betty Lennox
    Betty Bernice Lennox is an American professional basketball player most recently playing for the Tulsa Shock in the WNBA. Her nicknames include "Betty Basketball," "Betty Big Buckets," and her most popular nickname "B-Money."-Childhood:Betty grew up in the small town of Grant, OK. Daughter of...

    , WNBA player for the Los Angeles Sparks
    Los Angeles Sparks
    The Los Angeles Sparks is a professional basketball team based in Los Angeles, California, playing in the Western Conference in the Women's National Basketball Association . The team was founded before the league's inaugural 1997 season began...

  • Bob Lewis
    Bob Lewis (musician)
    Robert Curtis Lewis was a founding member of the New Wave band Devo...

    , former member and co-founder of Devo
    Devo
    Devo is an American band formed in 1973 consisting of members from Kent and Akron, Ohio. The classic line-up of the band includes two sets of brothers, the Mothersbaughs and the Casales . The band had a #14 Billboard chart hit in 1980 with the single "Whip It", and has maintained a cult...

  • Russell Lee Morman, Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball is the highest level of professional baseball in the United States and Canada, consisting of teams that play in the National League and the American League...

     outfielder and first baseman, coach
  • Albert Pujols
    Albert Pujols
    José Alberto Pujols Alcántara , better known as Albert Pujols , is a Dominican-American professional baseball player, who is currently a free agent...

    , St. Louis Cardinals
    St. Louis Cardinals
    The St. Louis Cardinals are a professional baseball team based in St. Louis, Missouri. They are members of the Central Division in the National League of Major League Baseball. The Cardinals have won eleven World Series championships, the most of any National League team, and second overall only to...

     first baseman
  • Ginger Rogers
    Ginger Rogers
    Ginger Rogers was an American actress, dancer, and singer who appeared in film, and on stage, radio, and television throughout much of the 20th century....

    , Academy Award–winning actress of musicals, dramas, and comedies. Silver screen dancing partner of Fred Astaire
    Fred Astaire
    Fred Astaire was an American film and Broadway stage dancer, choreographer, singer and actor. His stage and subsequent film career spanned a total of 76 years, during which he made 31 musical films. He was named the fifth Greatest Male Star of All Time by the American Film Institute...

  • Charles E. Spahr
    Charles E. Spahr
    Charles E. "Charlie" Spahr is the youngest person to be appointed President in Sohio history...

    , CEO, Standard Oil of Ohio
    Standard Oil of Ohio
    Standard Oil of Ohio or Sohio was an American oil company that was acquired by British Petroleum, now called BP.It was one of the successor companies to Standard Oil after the antitrust breakup in 1911. Standard Oil of Ohio was the original Standard Oil company founded by John D. Rockefeller. It...

  • David Stover
    David Stover
    David Stover , is a former NASCAR driver.He did a part-time schedule for MB Motorsports in 2003. He made his debut at the Memphis, starting 23rd and finishing 25th. He would earn his first career top-20 finish the next race at Milwaukee, finishing 18th. Stover's best run would come at Bristol,...

    , NASCAR
    NASCAR
    The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing is a family-owned and -operated business venture that sanctions and governs multiple auto racing sports events. It was founded by Bill France Sr. in 1947–48. As of 2009, the CEO for the company is Brian France, grandson of the late Bill France Sr...

     driver
  • Rick Sutcliffe, retired Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball
    Major League Baseball is the highest level of professional baseball in the United States and Canada, consisting of teams that play in the National League and the American League...

     veteran and sports announcer
  • Bess Truman
    Bess Truman
    Bess Truman , was the wife of Harry S. Truman and First Lady of the United States from 1945 to 1953.-Early life:...

    , 33rd First Lady of the United States
    First Lady of the United States
    First Lady of the United States is the title of the hostess of the White House. Because this position is traditionally filled by the wife of the president of the United States, the title is most often applied to the wife of a sitting president. The current first lady is Michelle Obama.-Current:The...

  • Harry S. Truman
    Harry S. Truman
    Harry S. Truman was the 33rd President of the United States . As President Franklin D. Roosevelt's third vice president and the 34th Vice President of the United States , he succeeded to the presidency on April 12, 1945, when President Roosevelt died less than three months after beginning his...

    , 33rd President of the United States
  • Margaret Weis
    Margaret Weis
    Margaret Edith Weis is a fantasy novelist who, along with Tracy Hickman, is one of the original creators of the Dragonlance game world and has written numerous novels and short stories set in fantastic worlds.-Early life:Margaret Weis was born in 1948 in Independence, Missouri, and later attended...

     is a fantasy novelist who, along with Tracy Hickman
    Tracy Hickman
    Tracy Raye Hickman is a best-selling fantasy author, best known for his work on Dragonlance as a game designer and co-author with Margaret Weis, while he worked for TSR...

    , is one of the original creators of the Dragonlance game world and has written numerous novels and short stories set in the world of Krynn.
  • Fatal1ty (Johnathan Wendel), professional e-sports
    Electronic sports
    Electronic sports comprises the competitive play of video games. Other terms include competitive gaming, professional gaming and cybersports...

     player
  • Tech N9ne
    Tech N9ne
    Aaron Dontez Yates , better known by his stage name Tech N9ne , is an American rapper from Kansas City, Missouri. In 1999, Yates and Travis O'Guin founded the record label Strange Music. Throughout his career, Yates has sold over one million albums and has had his music featured in film,...

     (Aaron Yates), rapper and Strange Music
    Strange Music
    Strange Music is an American independent record label specializing in hip hop music. It was founded by Tech N9ne and Travis O'Guin in 1999. It is currently distributed through Fontana Distribution.-History:...

     vice president.

External links