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Sainte Genevieve County, Missouri Location in the state of Missouri Missouri's location in the U.S. Founded October 1, 1812 Named for Saint Genevieve, patroness of Paris, France Seat Ste. Genevieve Largest city Ste. Genevieve Area  - Total  - Land  - Water 509 sq mi (1,318 km²) 502 sq mi (1,301 km²) 7 sq mi (17 km²), 1.29% PopulationEst.  - (2008)  - Density 17,720 36/sq mi (14/km²) Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5 Sainte Genevieve County, often abbreviated Ste. Genevieve County (French: Ste-Geneviève), is a county located in East Central Missouri in the United States. As of the 2000 U.S. Census, the county's population was 17,842. A 2008 estimate, however, showed the population to be 17,720. The largest city and county seat is Ste. Genevieve[1]. The county was officially organized on October 1, 1812, and is named after the Spanish district once located in the region, after Saint Genevieve, patroness of Paris, France. It contains the earliest European settlement west of the Mississippi River, part of the French colonial mid-Mississippi valley villages. Contents 1 History 2 Geography 2.1 Adjacent counties 2.2 Major highways 2.3 National protected area 3 Demographics 4 Cities and towns 5 Education 5.1 Public Schools 5.2 Private Schools 6 Politics 6.1 Local 6.2 State 6.3 Federal 6.3.1 Political Culture 6.4 Missouri Presidential Preference Primary (2008) 7 See also 8 References 9 External links History Ste. Genevieve County is located on the west bank of the Mississippi River approximately 60 miles (97 km) south of St. Louis. Ste. Genevieve is the principal town and the county seat of Ste. Genevieve County with a population of around 5,000 people. Ste. Genevieve was the first permanent civilized settlement in Missouri. The actual date of establishment is, like many other dates, connected to genealogy. There is a conflict of opinion as to the exact year depending on the preferred source. The year 1735, according to Goodspeed's History of Southeast Missouri, and most of the descendants of the early settlers, is the most generally accepted date. Dr. Carl J. Ekberg, in his book, Colonial Ste. Genevieve, is of the opinion that the date of the establishment of Ste. Genevieve is closer to 1750, based on interpretations of early letters, maps, and Catholic Church documents. Regardless of which date one wishes to believe, Ste. Genevieve is about 250 years old. The village of Ste. Genevieve was originally included in the Illinois Country. This was generally accepted to be all the land claimed by the French from the mouth of the Ohio River, north to the Great Lakes, and including the valleys of the Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio Rivers. The seat of government was established in New Orleans, and what is now Missouri became part of Upper Louisiana Territory. The early French explorers and settlers were known to have been in the Ste. Genevieve area in the very early 18th century. Salt was a very important commodity then in the preservation of foods and curing of animal hides, and the early French settlers were quick to exploit the salt springs on Saline Creek just below Ste. Genevieve. Mineral explorations lead Renault and La Motte to the area, and some of the very earliest lead mines were named for La Motte in nearby Madison County. Probably the biggest factor in the establishment of Ste. Genevieve was agriculture. Across the Mississippi River in Fort de Chartres and Kaskaskia, there was a growing need for agricultural land for the colonists. Across the Mississippi from Fort Kaskaskia was a large fertile section of river bottom, called the "Grand Champ" or Big Field. The "Old Town" of Ste. Genevieve was originally located here. It was approximately three miles south of the present site of Ste. Genevieve. The village of Ste. Genevieve was originally an off-shoot of the older French communities on the east bank of the Mississippi River—Cahokia, Kaskaskia, village of Chartres, Prairie du Rocher, and St. Philippe. The rich agricultural lands of the river bottoms were main attractions that lured most all of the early French pioneers to Ste. Genevieve. All the civil and legal business of Ste. Genevieve was transacted at Kaskaskia until about 1766 when the first commandant, Philippe de Rocheblave, was installed at Ste. Genevieve. The present site of the town of Ste. Genevieve was moved to its present higher location, from the river bottoms after the devastating floods of 1785. According to a sworn statement by one Julien Labriere, in October 1825, "there were about fifty or sixty cabins in the old village. The old village was overflowed so as to be on the tops of houses. The water in many places was twelve or fifteen feet deep." Although the Mississippi River was a natural barrier, travel back and forth was frequent and common. The first commercial ferry at Ste. Genevieve was established about 1800. When Missouri was first being settled, the Osage Native Americans were the only tribe between the Osage River and the Mississippi. They were of the same stock as the Sioux and hostile to the whites. Around 1787, the Spanish government, who had acquired the territory from France in 1762, brought in a band of Shawnee and Delaware Native Americans, who had been friendly to the French, to help protect the settlers from the Osage. After the French had established and settled Ste. Genevieve, the first American settlers started showing up in about 1788, and trickled upriver from Cape Girardeau and New Madrid. Starting about 1794, Americans began migrating into the Ste. Genevieve District from Pennsylvania, Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Starting around 1840, German Catholics began settling around New Offenburg and Zell, and shortly after German Lutherans began spreading into Ste. Genevieve from Perry County. In 1800, France reacquired Louisiana from Spain, and in 1803, Napoleon Bonaparte I sold it to the United States as the Louisiana Purchase. U.S. officials took over in 1804 and Ste. Genevieve County was formed in 1812 as an original county, from the old Ste. Genevieve District. It is bordered on the east by the Mississippi River, on the north by Jefferson County, on the west by St. Francois County, and on the south by Perry County. Geography According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 509 square miles (1,318 km²), of which, 502 square miles (1,301 km²) of it is land and 7 square miles (17 km²) of it (1.29%) is water. Adjacent counties Jefferson County (northwest) Monroe County, Illinois (northeast) Randolph County, Illinois (east) Perry County (southeast) St. Francois County (southwest) Major highways Interstate 55 U.S. Route 61 Route 32 National protected area Mark Twain National Forest (part) Demographics As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 17,842 people, 6,586 households, and 4,926 families residing in the county. The population density was 36 people per square mile (14/km²). There were 8,018 housing units at an average density of 16 per square mile (6/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 98.03% White, 0.72% Black or African American, 0.30% Native American, 0.16% Asian, 0.13% from other races, and 0.66% from two or more races. Approximately 0.74% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 6,586 households out of which 35.10% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 63.60% were married couples living together, 7.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.20% were non-families. 21.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.66 and the average family size was 3.09. In the county the population was spread out with 26.60% under the age of 18, 7.60% from 18 to 24, 27.90% from 25 to 44, 23.30% from 45 to 64, and 14.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 101.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.50 males. The median income for a household in the county was $48,764, and the median income for a family was $56,170. Males had a median income of $33,609 versus $18,875 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,876. About 6.00% of families and 8.20% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.30% of those under age 18 and 7.90% of those age 65 or over. Cities and towns Bloomsdale Clearwater Coffman New Offenburg River aux Vases Rocky Ridge St. Mary Ste. Genevieve Weingarten Womack Education Of adults 25 years of age and older in Ste. Genevieve County, 73.8% possesses a high school diploma or higher while 8.1% holds a bachelor's degree or higher as their highest educational attainment. Public Schools Ste. Genevieve County R-II School District - Ste. Genevieve Bloomsdale Elementary School - Bloomsdale - (K-05) Ste. Genevieve Elementary School (K-05) Ste. Genevieve Middle School (06-08) Ste. Genevieve High School (09-12) Private Schools Sacred Heart School - St. Mary - (K-05) - Roman Catholic St. Agnes Catholic Elementary School - Bloomsdale - (PK-08) - Roman Catholic St. Joseph Elementary School - Ste. Genevieve - (PK-05) - Roman Catholic Valle Catholic Schools - Ste. Genevieve - (K-12) - Roman Catholic Valle Catholic Grade School (K-08) Valle Catholic High School (09-12) Politics Local Politics at the local level in Ste. Genevieve County is completely controlled by the Democratic Party. All of Ste. Genevieve County’s elected officeholders are Democrats. Office Incumbent Party Assessor Clement F. Donze Democratic Circuit Clerk Carol Steiger Democratic Clerk Kay A. Basler Democratic Collector Phyllis A. Vessell Democratic Commissioner – District 1 Garry L. Nelson Democratic Commissioner – District 2 Ray Gettinger Democratic Coroner Leo C. “Chipper” Basler Democratic Presiding Commissioner Albert J. Fults Democratic Prosecuting Attorney Timothy W. Inman Democratic Public Administrator Mary Jo Ramer Democratic Recorder David Gegg Democratic Sheriff Gary Stolzer Democratic Surveyor Gerald “Duck” Badger Democratic Treasurer Judy E. Thomas Democratic State Past Gubernatorial Elections Results Year Republican Democratic Third Parties 2008 32.87% 2,861 65.48% 5,699 1.65% 144 2004 46.90% 3,845 51.32% 4,208 1.78% 146 2000 48.36% 3,525 48.76% 3,554 2.88% 210 1996 37.31% 2,515 60.23% 4,060 2.46% 166 Ste. Genevieve County is divided into two legislative districts in the Missouri House of Representatives. District 106 – Rep. Steve Tilley (R-Perryville). Consists of the extreme southern parts of the county along the Perry County and St. Francois County line. In 2008, Tilley ran unopposed and was reelected with 100 percent of the vote. District 104 – Rep. Joseph Fallert, Jr. (D-Ste. Genevieve). Consists of most of the entire county. In 2008, Fallert ran unopposed and was reelected with 100 percent of the vote. Ste. Genevieve County is also a part of Missouri's 3rd Senatorial District and is currently represented by State Senator Kevin Engler (R-Farmington). In 2008, Engler defeated Dennis Riche (D) 58.72-41.28 percent; Ste. Genevieve County backed Engler with 59.21 percent while Riche received 40.79 percent. The 3rd Senatorial District consists of Carter, Iron, Reynolds, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve and Washington counties and parts of Jefferson County. Federal In the U.S. House of Representatives, Ste. Genevieve County is represented by Russ Carnahan (D-St. Louis) who represents most of the southern portion of the Greater St. Louis Area as part of Missouri's 3rd Congressional District. The county will soon be moved into the neighboring 8th Congressional District, currently represented by Jo Ann Emerson (R-Cape Girardeau) as Missouri loses a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives due to results from the 2010 U.S. Census. Political Culture Past Presidential Elections Results Year Republican Democratic Third Parties 2008 42.29% 3,732 56.42% 4,979 1.29% 114 2004 46.54% 3,791 52.55% 4,281 0.91% 74 2000 47.94% 3,505 49.24% 3,600 2.82% 206 1996 30.89% 2,078 53.47% 3,597 15.64% 1,052 Unlike many other rural counties throughout Missouri, Ste. Genevieve is one of the most reliably Democratic strongholds in presidential elections. George W. Bush lost Ste. Genevieve County both times in 2000 and 2004; in 2004 it was one of only four counties (the others being St. Louis City, St. Louis County and Jackson County) that voted for John Kerry. And unlike other rural counties throughout Missouri, Ste. Genevieve County was one of only nine counties in Missouri that favored Barack Obama over John McCain in 2008. The last Republican presidential nominee to win Ste. Genevieve County was Ronald Reagan in 1984. Since then the county has been a safe haven for Democrats. However, like most rural counties throughout Missouri, voters in Ste. Genevieve County generally adhere to socially and culturally conservative principles but are more moderate or populist on economic issues, typical of the Dixiecrat philosophy. In 2004, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman—it overwhelmingly passed Ste. Genevieve County with 75.25 percent of the vote. The initiative passed the state with 71 percent of support from voters as Missouri became the first state to ban same-sex marriage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to fund and legalize embryonic stem cell research in the state—it failed in Ste. Genevieve County with 56.22 percent voting against the measure. The initiative narrowly passed the state with 51 percent of support from voters as Missouri became one of the first states in the nation to approve embryonic stem cell research. Despite Ste. Genevieve County’s longstanding tradition of supporting socially conservative platforms, voters in the county have a penchant for advancing populist causes like increasing the minimum wage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a proposition (Proposition B) to increase the minimum wage in the state to $6.50 an hour—it passed Ste. Genevieve County with 79.26 percent of the vote. The proposition strongly passed every single county in Missouri with 78.99 percent voting in favor as the minimum wage was increased to $6.50 an hour in the state. During the same election, voters in five other states also strongly approved increases in the minimum wage. Missouri Presidential Preference Primary (2008) Former U.S. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-New York) received more votes, a total of 1,922, than any candidate from either party in Ste. Genevieve County during the 2008 presidential primary. She also received more votes than the total number of votes cast in the entire Republican Primary in Ste. Genevieve County. Ste. Genevieve County, Missouri 2008 Republican primary in Missouri John McCain 518 (40.76%) Mike Huckabee 419 (32.97%) Mitt Romney 270 (21.24%) Ron Paul 47 (3.70%) Ste. Genevieve County, Missouri 2008 Democratic primary in Missouri Hillary Rodham Clinton 1,922 (62.36%) Barack Obama 1,050 (34.07%) John Edwards (withdrawn) 85 (2.76%) See also National Register of Historic Places listings in Ste. Genevieve County, Missouri References ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.  ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.  External links Digitized 1930 Plat Book of Ste. Genevieve County from University of Missouri Division of Special Collections, Archives, and Rare Books v · d · eMunicipalities and communities of Sainte Genevieve County, Missouri County seat: Ste. Genevieve Cities Bloomsdale | Ste. Genevieve | St. Mary Townships Beauvais | Jackson | Ste. Genevieve | Saline | Union Unincorporated communities Clearwater | Coffman | New Offenburg | River aux Vases | Rocky Ridge | Weingarten | Womack | Zell v · d · e State of Missouri Jefferson City (capital) Topics Government · Delegations · Geography · Transportation · History · People · Visitor Attractions Society Culture · Crime · Demographics · Economy · Education Regions Bootheel · Crowley's Ridge · Dissected Till Plains · Four State Area · Henry Shaw Ozark Corridor · Honey Lands · Lead Belt · Lincoln Hills · Little Dixie · Loess Hills · Mid-Missouri · Mississippi Embayment · Missouri Rhineland · Northern Plains · Osage Plains · Ozark Plateau · Platte Purchase · Pony Express · St. Francois Mountains · Westplex Metro areas Columbia · Jefferson City · Joplin · Kansas City · Springfield · St. Joseph · St. Louis Largest cities Kansas City · St. Louis · Springfield · Independence · Columbia · Lee's Summit · O'Fallon · St. Joseph · St. Charles · St. Peters · Blue Springs · Florissant · Joplin · Chesterfield · Jefferson City · Cape Girardeau · Wildwood · University City · Ballwin · Raytown · Liberty · Wentzville · Kirkwood · Maryland Heights · Hazelwood Counties and independent cities Adair · Andrew · Atchison · Audrain · Barry · Barton · Bates · Benton · Bollinger · Boone · Buchanan · Butler · Caldwell · Callaway · Camden · Cape Girardeau · Carroll · Carter · Cass · Cedar · Chariton · Christian · Clark · Clay · Clinton · Cole · Cooper · Crawford · Dade · Dallas · Daviess · DeKalb · Dent · Douglas · Dunklin · Franklin · Gasconade · Gentry · Greene · Grundy · Harrison · Henry · Hickory · Holt · Howard · Howell · Iron · Jackson · Jasper · Jefferson · Johnson · Knox · Laclede · Lafayette · Lawrence · Lewis · Lincoln · Linn · Livingston · Macon · Madison · Maries · Marion · McDonald · Mercer · Miller · Mississippi · Moniteau · Monroe · Montgomery · Morgan · New Madrid · Newton · Nodaway · Oregon · Osage · Ozark · Pemiscot · Perry · Pettis · Phelps · Pike · Platte · Polk · Pulaski · Putnam · Ralls · Randolph · Ray · Reynolds · Ripley · St. Charles · St. Clair · St. Francois · St. Louis (City) · St. Louis (County) · Ste. 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