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Metropolis, Illinois

Metropolis, Illinois

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Metropolis is a city located along the Ohio River
Ohio River
The Ohio River is the largest tributary, by volume, of the Mississippi River. At the confluence, the Ohio is even bigger than the Mississippi and, thus, is hydrologically the main stream of the whole river system, including the Allegheny River further upstream...

 in Massac County, Illinois, in the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

. As of the 2000 census, the city population was 6,482. It 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 Massac County.
Metropolis is part of the Paducah
Paducah, Kentucky
Paducah is the largest city in Kentucky's Jackson Purchase Region and the county seat of McCracken County, Kentucky, United States. It is located at the confluence of the Tennessee River and the Ohio River, halfway between the metropolitan areas of St. Louis, Missouri, to the west and Nashville,...

, KY
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

-IL Micropolitan Statistical Area
Paducah micropolitan area
The Paducah Micropolitan Statistical Area, as defined by the United States Census Bureau, is an area consisting of four counties – three in the Jackson Purchase region of Kentucky and one in southern Illinois – anchored by the city of Paducah, Kentucky....

 and also located in Southern Illinois.

History


Located on the Ohio River, the Metropolis area has been settled by many different peoples over history. For thousands of years, varying cultures of Native Americans
Indigenous peoples of the Americas
The indigenous peoples of the Americas are the pre-Columbian inhabitants of North and South America, their descendants and other ethnic groups who are identified with those peoples. Indigenous peoples are known in Canada as Aboriginal peoples, and in the United States as Native Americans...

 originally populated the area. The most complex society was the Mississippian culture
Mississippian culture
The Mississippian culture was a mound-building Native American culture that flourished in what is now the Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States from approximately 800 CE to 1500 CE, varying regionally....

, which reached its peak out 1100 AD and built a large city at Cahokia
Cahokia
Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site is the area of an ancient indigenous city located in the American Bottom floodplain, between East Saint Louis and Collinsville in south-western Illinois, across the Mississippi River from St. Louis, Missouri. The site included 120 human-built earthwork mounds...

, near present-day Collinsville, Illinois
Collinsville, Illinois
Collinsville is a city located mainly in Madison County, and partially in St. Clair County, both in Illinois. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 26,016. Collinsville is approximately 12 miles from St. Louis, Missouri and is considered part of that city's Metro-East area...

. Its people built large earthworks
Earthworks (archaeology)
In archaeology, earthwork is a general term to describe artificial changes in land level. Earthworks are often known colloquially as 'lumps and bumps'. Earthworks can themselves be archaeological features or they can show features beneath the surface...

 and related structures, many of which remain at the UNESCO
UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

 World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the UNESCO as of special cultural or physical significance...

. Mississippian culture regional centers arose throughout the Ohio and lower Mississippian valleys, where the rivers were part of widespread trading routes.

In 1757, Massac County was settled by a French expedition, which built Fort De L'Ascension for use during the French and Indian War
French and Indian War
The French and Indian War is the common American name for the war between Great Britain and France in North America from 1754 to 1763. In 1756, the war erupted into the world-wide conflict known as the Seven Years' War and thus came to be regarded as the North American theater of that war...

 (also known as the Seven Years War. The forces at the fort were able to resist a Cherokee
Cherokee
The Cherokee are a Native American people historically settled in the Southeastern United States . Linguistically, they are part of the Iroquoian language family...

 attack during the war. Afterward the defeated French abandoned the fort. When the victorious British
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 came to possess territory ceded by the French, the Chickasaw had already destroyed the fort.

Its mostly ethnic French residents were sympathetic to the rebels. In 1794 General George Washington ordered Fort Massac reconstructed. The fort was severely damaged by the New Madrid earthquake
New Madrid earthquake
The 1811-1812 New Madrid earthquakes were an intense intraplate earthquake series beginning with an initial pair of very large earthquakes on December 16, 1811. These earthquakes remain the most powerful earthquakes ever to hit the eastern United States in recorded history...

 of 1811-12, and was abandoned by US military forces in 1814. Local settlers scavenged the timbers and left little behind of the original construction materials.

He picked the site because it was high above the river. In 1843, the Illinois Legislature formed Massac County. The McCartney family became leaders in building the town.

Prior to the 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...

, some groups worked to establish a Western District of Columbia to include present-day Metropolis and the nearby area of Kentucky. An 1850 map illustrates this proposal. Soldiers were encamped in the vicinity during the early years of the 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...

. Although in this area of southern Illinois, more farmers held slaves than in other parts of the state, as this section had been settled by migrants from the South, the state stayed with the Union during the war.

Metropolis is also home to Harrah's Metropolis
Harrah's Metropolis
Harrah's Metropolis is a riverboat casino located on the Ohio River in Metropolis, Illinois. Originally opened by in 1994 as a joint venture between Players International and show business impresario Merv Griffin as one of the state's first casinos, the property became part of Harrah's as part of...

 casino
Casino
In modern English, a casino is a facility which houses and accommodates certain types of gambling activities. Casinos are most commonly built near or combined with hotels, restaurants, retail shopping, cruise ships or other tourist attractions...

/hotel, a riverboat casino frequented by visitors from around the region, making tourism one of the city's largest industries. Metropolis is also the site of the Honeywell Uranium Hexafluoride Processing Facility
Honeywell Uranium Hexafluoride Processing Facility
Honeywell Uranium Hexafluoride Processing Facility, a uranium conversion facility, is located 3 km northwest of Metropolis, Illinois. The plant, Honeywell Specialty Chemicals in Metropolis, Illinois, has a nominal capacity of 12,700 metric tons of uranium per year...

, which converts milled uranium
Uranium
Uranium is a silvery-white metallic chemical element in the actinide series of the periodic table, with atomic number 92. It is assigned the chemical symbol U. A uranium atom has 92 protons and 92 electrons, of which 6 are valence electrons...

 into uranium hexafluoride
Uranium hexafluoride
Uranium hexafluoride , referred to as "hex" in the nuclear industry, is a compound used in the uranium enrichment process that produces fuel for nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons. It forms solid grey crystals at standard temperature and pressure , is highly toxic, reacts violently with water...

 for nuclear reactor
Nuclear reactor
A nuclear reactor is a device to initiate and control a sustained nuclear chain reaction. Most commonly they are used for generating electricity and for the propulsion of ships. Usually heat from nuclear fission is passed to a working fluid , which runs through turbines that power either ship's...

s.

In popular culture

  • On January 21, 1972 DC Comics declared Metropolis the "Hometown of Superman
    Superman
    Superman is a fictional comic book superhero appearing in publications by DC Comics, widely considered to be an American cultural icon. Created by American writer Jerry Siegel and Canadian-born American artist Joe Shuster in 1932 while both were living in Cleveland, Ohio, and sold to Detective...

    ".
  • On June 9, 1972 the Illinois State Legislature passed Resolution 572 that declared Metropolis the "Hometown of Superman
    Superman
    Superman is a fictional comic book superhero appearing in publications by DC Comics, widely considered to be an American cultural icon. Created by American writer Jerry Siegel and Canadian-born American artist Joe Shuster in 1932 while both were living in Cleveland, Ohio, and sold to Detective...

    ," the comic book superhero who is based in the fictional city of Metropolis
    Metropolis (comics)
    Metropolis is a fictional city that appears in comic books published by DC Comics, and is the home of Superman. Metropolis first appeared by name in Action Comics #16 ....

    .
  • The city has erected a large Superman statue, and fans created a small Superman museum. The city holds an annual Superman Celebration held the second weekend in June.
  • The local newspaper is named The Metropolis Planet, inspired by The Daily Planet
    Daily Planet
    The Daily Planet is a fictional broadsheet newspaper in the , appearing mostly in the stories of Superman. The building's original features were based upon the AT&T Huron Road Building in Cleveland, Ohio...

    , the fictional paper in Superman's Metropolis.
  • The 2005 album Illinoise from indie musician Sufjan Stevens
    Sufjan Stevens
    Sufjan Stevens is an American singer-songwriter and musician born in Detroit, Michigan. Stevens first began releasing his music on Asthmatic Kitty, a label co-founded with his stepfather, beginning with the 1999 release, A Sun Came...

     features a track entitled "The Man of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts."

Geography


Metropolis is located at 37°9′12"N 88°43′31"W (37.153332, -88.725374).

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 5.1 square miles (13.2 km²), of which, 5 square miles (12.9 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square mile (0.258998811 km²) of it (1.18%) is water.

Demographics


As of the census
Census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2000, there were 6,482 people, 2,896 households, and 1,708 families residing in the city. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 1,295.1 people per square mile (499.5/km²). There were 3,265 housing units at an average density of 652.3 per square mile (251.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 90.53% White
White American
White Americans are people of the United States who are considered or consider themselves White. The United States Census Bureau defines White people as those "having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa...

, 7.61% African American
African American
African Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have at least partial ancestry from any of the native populations of Sub-Saharan Africa and are the direct descendants of enslaved Africans within the boundaries of the present United States...

, 0.20% Native American
Native Americans in the United States
Native Americans in the United States are the indigenous peoples in North America within the boundaries of the present-day continental United States, parts of Alaska, and the island state of Hawaii. They are composed of numerous, distinct tribes, states, and ethnic groups, many of which survive as...

, 0.20% Asian
Asian American
Asian Americans are Americans of Asian descent. The U.S. Census Bureau definition of Asians as "Asian” refers to a person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan,...

, 0.45% from other races, and 1.02% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos
Hispanic and Latino Americans
Hispanic or Latino Americans are Americans with origins in the Hispanic countries of Latin America or in Spain, and in general all persons in the United States who self-identify as Hispanic or Latino.1990 Census of Population and Housing: A self-designated classification for people whose origins...

 of any race were 0.74% of the population.

There were 2,896 households out of which 24.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.6% were married couples
Marriage
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.0% were non-families. 36.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 20.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.13 and the average family size was 2.77.

The age distribution was 20.0% under 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 25.4% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 24.8% who were 65 or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 79.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 75.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $25,371, and the median income for a family was $33,979. Males had a median income of $27,630 versus $17,561 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the city was $15,967. About 12.5% of families and 17.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.8% of those under age 18 and 16.7% of those age 65 or over.

Transportation


Metropolis is served by Interstate 24
Interstate 24
Interstate 24 is an Interstate Highway in the Midwestern and Southeastern United States. It runs diagonally from Interstate 57 to Chattanooga, Tennessee, at Interstate 75....

, a regional Interstate Highway that runs from Chattanooga, Tennessee
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Chattanooga is the fourth-largest city in the US state of Tennessee , with a population of 169,887. It is the seat of Hamilton County...

 northwest to St. Louis, Missouri
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...

 via Interstates 57
Interstate 57
Interstate 57 is an Interstate Highway in Missouri and Illinois that parallels the old Illinois Central rail line for much of its route. It goes from Miner, Missouri, at Interstate 55 to Chicago, Illinois, at Interstate 94. I-57 essentially serves as a shortcut route for travelers headed between...

 and 64
Interstate 64
Interstate 64 is an Interstate Highway in the Midwestern and Southeastern United States. Its western terminus is at I-70, U.S. 40, and U.S. 61 in Wentzville, Missouri. Its eastern terminus is at an interchange with I-264 and I-664 at Bowers Hill in Chesapeake, Virginia. As I-64 is concurrent with...

. It is also served by U.S. Route 45
U.S. Route 45
U.S. Route 45 is a north–south United States highway. US 45 is a border-to-border route, from Lake Superior to the Gulf of Mexico. A sign at the highway's northern terminus notes the total distance as ....

, which runs geographically east-west through the area but runs north to Chicago
Chicago
Chicago is the largest city in the US state of Illinois. With nearly 2.7 million residents, it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States and the third most populous in the US, after New York City and Los Angeles...

 and south to Paducah, and is signed north-south.

Illinois Route 145
Illinois Route 145
Illinois Route 145 is a north–south state road in southern Illinois. It splits off from U.S. Route 45 near Metropolis and runs north, rejoining U.S. 45 in Harrisburg...

 lies east of the city and serves remote areas of nearby Shawnee National Forest
Shawnee National Forest
The Shawnee National Forest, located in the Ozark and Shawnee Hills of Southern Illinois, consists of approximately 280,000 acres of federally managed lands. In descending order of land area it is located in parts of Pope, Jackson, Union, Hardin, Alexander, Saline, Gallatin, Johnson, and Massac...

.

Healthcare


Metropolis is home to Massac Memorial Hospital
Massac Memorial Hospital
Massac Memorial Hospital is a 25-bed hospital located in Metropolis, Illinois.-Services:Current services offered include cardiac rehabilitation, cardiopulmonary, EMS, emergency department, imaging, laboratory, clinic, rehabilitation services, sleep disorders center, surgery, and transitional care...

, a 25-bed Critical Access Hospital that opened in 1956. Originally shaped like a cross, the hospital is located on the northwest side of town. The Hospital has undergone several renovations and additions to make updates to the original facility. Current services offered include Ambulance, Cardiac Rehabilitation, Cardiopulmonary, Emergency Department, Imaging, Laboratory, Massac Memorial Medical Clinic, Rehabilitation Services, Sleep Disorders Center, Specialty Clinic, Surgery, and Transitional Care. A Fresenius Medical Care
Fresenius Medical Care
Fresenius Medical Care is a German company specializing in the production of medical supplies, primarily to facilitate or aid renal dialysis. It is 36%-owned by the health care company Fresenius. The company was formed in 1996 from the merger of Fresenius Worldwide Dialysis, then a division of...

 Dialysis Center was constructed on the campus and opened in 2009.

Notable people


  • Curt Jones, creator in 1987 of Dippin' Dots
    Dippin' Dots
    Dippin' Dots is an ice cream snack, invented by Southern Illinois University Carbondale graduate Curt Jones in 1987. The confection is created by flash freezing ice cream mix in liquid nitrogen; consequently, Dippin' Dots contain less air than conventional ice cream...

     ice cream.
  • Annie Turnbo Malone (born 1869), businesswoman and philanthropist, founder of the black beauty culture and Poro College.
  • Oscar Micheaux
    Oscar Micheaux
    Oscar Devereaux Micheaux was an American author, film director and independent producer of more than 44 films...

    , pioneering African-American filmmaker and author.
  • Jack Smith, driver with 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...

    .
  • John Steele
    John Steele (paratrooper)
    Private John M. Steele was the American paratrooper made famous in the movie, The Longest Day who landed in Sainte-Mère-Église, the first village in Normandy liberated by the Americans on D-Day, June 6, 1944....

    , American paratrooper made famous in the movie, The Longest Day (film)
    The Longest Day (film)
    The Longest Day is a 1962 war film based on the 1959 history book The Longest Day by Cornelius Ryan, about "D-Day", the Normandy landings on 6 June 1944, during World War II....

     (1962).
  • Robert Franklin Stroud, the Birdman of Alcatraz
    Birdman of Alcatraz
    Robert Franklin Stroud , known as the "Birdman of Alcatraz", was a federal American prisoner who reared and sold birds and became an ornithologist...

    , is buried in Metropolis.
  • Ben Taylor
    Ben Taylor (first baseman)
    Benjamin Eugene Taylor was an American Major League Baseball first baseman.Born in Metropolis, Illinois, Taylor originally signed as a free agent in 1944 with the Brooklyn Dodgers. In 1949, he was selected by the Chicago Cubs in the Minor League Draft. He would be returned to the Dodgers the...

    , 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...

     player, was born in Metropolis.
  • The sisters Betty
    Betty Foss
    Betty Foss [Fossey] was a infielder and outfielder who played from through in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Listed at 5' 10", 180 lb., she was a switch-hitter and threw right-handed. She started her career as Betty Weaver but changed her last name to Foss after marrying...

    , Jean
    Jean Weaver
    Jean Weaver was a utility player who played from through in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. Listed at 5' 8", 138 lb., Weaver batted and threw right-handed. She was born in Metropolis, Illinois...

     and Joanne Weaver
    Joanne Weaver
    Joanne Weaver [″Joltin' Jo″] was a right fielder who played from through in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League...

    , who played in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
    All-American Girls Professional Baseball League
    The All-American Girls Professional Baseball League was a women's professional baseball league founded by Philip K. Wrigley which existed from 1943 to 1954. During the league's history, over 600 women played ball.-History:...

     in the early 1950s.

Metropolis vs. Smallville


The city of Metropolis
Metropolis (comics)
Metropolis is a fictional city that appears in comic books published by DC Comics, and is the home of Superman. Metropolis first appeared by name in Action Comics #16 ....

 in the Superman saga is typically depicted as a large American city, such as Chicago
Chicago
Chicago is the largest city in the US state of Illinois. With nearly 2.7 million residents, it is the most populous city in the Midwestern United States and the third most populous in the US, after New York City and Los Angeles...

 or New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 (although the author of the original comic book series based Metropolis on Toronto
Toronto
Toronto is the provincial capital of Ontario and the largest city in Canada. It is located in Southern Ontario on the northwestern shore of Lake Ontario. A relatively modern city, Toronto's history dates back to the late-18th century, when its land was first purchased by the British monarchy from...

).

The town of Metropolis, Illinois is much more like Superman's adoptive midwestern home town of Smallville. The only movie theater in Metropolis has closed. Residents who want to see a theatrical release of a Superman film, ostensibly set in their town's fictional namesake, must travel to another town (typically Paducah, Kentucky
Paducah, Kentucky
Paducah is the largest city in Kentucky's Jackson Purchase Region and the county seat of McCracken County, Kentucky, United States. It is located at the confluence of the Tennessee River and the Ohio River, halfway between the metropolitan areas of St. Louis, Missouri, to the west and Nashville,...

) to do so.

The real town of Metropolis is portrayed in one Superman comic-book story, specifically "Superman #92", in a story titled "Massacre in Metropolis!" (which is continued into "Adventures of Superman #515"), as a town whose citizens idolize, what is to them, the real-life Man of Steel. A villain named Massacre
Massacre (comics)
Massacre is a fictional character, a DC Comics super-villain who first appeared in Adventures of Superman #509 .-Fictional character biography:...

 arrives in the town, having gotten lost and thinking he was in the "other" Metropolis, the city where Superman actually lives. He attacks a security guard and threatens many citizens in order to get proper directions to Superman's Metropolis.

Superman references



Metropolis is the home of Superman and has a giant statue of him on a main street in downtown Metropolis. The statue is located in front of the town courthouse. They hold a celebration annually in June called "The Superman Celebration" where comic book collectors come from all over the United States.
Although Superman's Metropolis is usually used as an allegory for New York City, and in Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman is located in the fictional state of New Troy, one Adventures of Superman
Adventures of Superman (TV series)
Adventures of Superman is an American television series based on comic book characters and concepts created in 1938 by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. The show is the first television series to feature Superman and began filming in 1951 in California...

episode actually alludes to Superman living in Illinois. In the first season episode "A Night of Terror" Jimmy Olsen and Clark Kent make plans to go see a Chicago White Sox game. Since Jimmy doesn't know Clark's secret identity, it is reasonable to assume that they plan on driving across the state as opposed to flying halfway across the country. Metropolis, Illinois was founded in 1839.

External links