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Marion is a city in Grant County, Indiana, United States. The population was 29,948 as of the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Grant County. It is named for Francis Marion, a Brigadier General from South Carolina in the American Revolutionary War.
The city is the home of Indiana Wesleyan University, the largest evangelical Christian university in the Midwest and largest private university in Indiana. Since 2003, former Olympic skater Wayne Seybold has been Marion’s mayor. Marion is also noted for being the birthplace of legendary actor James Dean and famed cartoonist Jim Davis, though both were raised in nearby Fairmount. It was also the location of the wedding of actress Julia Roberts and singer Lyle Lovett in 1993. The city is also the site of the infamous lynching of Thomas Shipp and Abram Smith.
Marion is located at 40°32′57″N 85°39′53″W (40.549140, -85.664681), along the Mississinewa River.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.79 square miles (40.90 km2), of which 15.71 square miles (40.69 km2) is land and 0.08 square miles (0.21 km2) is water.
As of the census of 2010, there were 29,948 people, 11,828 households, and 6,739 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,906.3 inhabitants per square mile (736.0 /km2). There were 13,715 housing units at an average density of 873.0 per square mile (337.1 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 78.1% White, 14.7% African American, 0.4% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 2.4% from other races, and 3.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.5% of the population.
There were 11,828 households of which 27.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.2% were married couples living together, 17.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 43.0% were non-families. 36.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.91.
The median age in the city was 36.2 years. 21.1% of residents were under the age of 18; 16.3% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 22.1% were from 25 to 44; 24.5% were from 45 to 64; and 16% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 47.0% male and 53.0% female.
One of Marion’s more notable architectural landmarks is the extensive Marion High School campus, which includes an impressive 1,468 seat community auditorium. This is where the Marion Philharmonic Orchestra, the Marion Civic Theatre, and the Mississinewa Valley Community Band provide musical and dramatic entertainment for Marion’s numerous arts patrons.
The seven-time state basketball champions, Marion Giants, play in the 7,500 seat Bill Green Athletic Arena. The city operates a 2.75-mile (4.43 km) Riverwalk from downtown to Matter Park, and there is a newly renovated $9,000,000 YMCA Memorial Coliseum to honor war veterans. This was the previous home of the Giants, which was built after their first State Basketball Title in 1926.
A publicly owned mansion, the Hostess House, is used for social functions, and Marion General Hospital has been nationally accredited for approximately a half-century. Marion General was recently named a Magnet hospital. Fewer than 5% of all hospitals earn this honor.
Marion’s manufacturing sector produces automotive components, paper products, foundry products, machinery, wire, and cable. The paper plate industry was born in Marion; in its infancy, five of the nation’s nine plants were located in the city.