La Harpe,

La Harpe is a city in Kansas. It is located in Allen County, on Highway 50 between Iola and Moran. The population was 706 at the 2000 census.


About La Harpe
(from the town Web site)
LaHarpe is about six miles East of the County Seat of Allen County, where there are doctors, a fine hospital, a Community College, an Arts Center, a Library and shopping, so it is convenient.

LaHarpe is one of the older towns in the area. It was platted in 1885 as a stop on the St. Louis, Fort Scott and Wichita Railroad. It was named after LaHarpe, Illinois for the simple reason that the engineer on the first train through here lived in LaHarpe, Illinois. The town grew modestly to serve farmers until the Lanyon Smelting Company built a zinc smelter there, creating hundreds of jobs. The town grew like a weed.

There is no large industry in town. However, a local Quarry has it's office here, many small shops such as a motor cycle shop and a small tire shop reside here, and recently, a metal recycling shop opened.

The Early History of La Harpe
by Frank W. Blackmar (1912)
La Harpe, located on the Missouri Pacific and the Missouri, Kansas & Texas railways 5 miles east of Iola, is the third largest city in Allen county. The town was founded by the Fort Scott, Wichita & Western Railroad company (now the Missouri Pacific), and was platted in 1881. When natural gas was discovered in the immediate vicinity in 1899 La Harpe began to grow more rapidly and soon rose to be a city of importance. It is now an incorporated city of the second class, and has some of the largest zinc smelters in the world, 2 banks, an opera house, several good mercantile establishments, a newspaper, and all the municipal improvements usually found in cities of that class. The population in 1910 was 2,080. Its postoffice is authorized to issue international money orders, and two rural routes supply mail to the surrounding country.

La Harpe is located at 37°54'56N, 95°17'59W (37.915631, -95.299729).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.2 km² (0.9 mi²), all land.

As of the census of 2000, there were 706 people, 268 households, and 191 families residing in the city. The population density was 317.0/km² (819.4/mi²). There were 298 housing units at an average density of 133.8/km² (345.9/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 93.77% White, 0.99% African American, 2.12% Native American, and 3.12% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.85% of the population.

There were 268 households out of which 35.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.1% were married couples living together, 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.4% were non-families. 23.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.63 and the average family size was 3.08.

In the city the population was spread out with 28.6% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 29.6% from 25 to 44, 21.4% from 45 to 64, and 10.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 103.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.8 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $24,219, and the median income for a family was $32,981. Males had a median income of $22,102 versus $16,058 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,196. About 8.9% of families and 13.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.1% of those under age 18 and 11.8% of those age 65 or over.

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