Fairmount is a town in Fairmount Township, Grant County in the east central part of the U.S. state of Indiana. The population was 2,954 at the 2010 census. It is ninety kilometers (fifty-five miles) northeast of Indianapolis. Largely a bedroom community for nearby Marion, Fairmount is best known as the boyhood home of actor James Dean, who is buried there.
|Town of Fairmount|
Location of Fairmount in Grant County, Indiana.
|• Type||town council|
|• Total||1.58 sq mi (4.10 km2)|
|• Land||1.58 sq mi (4.10 km2)|
|• Water||0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)|
|Elevation||863 ft (263 m)|
| • Estimate |
|• Density||1,771.95/sq mi (684.13/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC-5 (EST)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC-4 (EST)|
|GNIS feature ID||0434304|
Fairmount is located at (40.417702, −85.648942).
According to the 2010 census, Fairmount has a total area of 1.58 square miles (4.09 km2), all land.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the census of 2010, there were 2,954 people, 1,241 households, and 837 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,869.6 inhabitants per square mile (721.9/km2). There were 1,350 housing units at an average density of 854.4 per square mile (329.9/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 98.6% White, 0.1% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.2% from other races, and 0.7% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.9% of the population.
There were 1,241 households of which 31.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.6% were married couples living together, 14.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 32.6% were non-families. 28.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 12% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 2.85.
The median age in the town was 40.3 years. 23.9% of residents were under the age of 18; 8.4% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.2% were from 25 to 44; 28% were from 45 to 64; and 16.5% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the town was 48.5% male and 51.5% female.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,992 people, 1,226 households, and 859 families residing in the town. The population density was 2,033.0 people per square mile (785.9/km²). There were 1,325 housing units at an average density of 900.3 per square mile (348.0/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 98.30% White, 0.17% Black or African American, 0.70% Native American, 0.20% Asian, 0.07% from other races, and 0.57% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.43% of the population.
There were 1,226 households out of which 31.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.5% were married couples living together, 11.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.9% were non-families. 26.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.44 and the average family size was 2.91.
In the town, the population was spread out with 25.2% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 28.2% from 25 to 44, 24.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.0 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $33,843, and the median income for a family was $44,033. Males had a median income of $31,136 versus $23,041 for females. The per capita income for the town was $18,029. About 7.4% of families and 9.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.8% of those under age 18 and 7.8% of those age 65 or over.
After a large deposit of natural gas was found in 1887, Fairmount became part of the Indiana Gas Boom and a center of the glass industry for the rest of the 19th century. Shortly after the depletion of the gas in 1900 the automobile industry set up factories in the nearby large cities, and Fairmount became a bedroom community, restoring some of its lost prosperity.
In the 1940s, James Dean lived with an aunt and uncle, Ortense and Marcus Winslow on a farm north of Fairmount. He attended Fairmount High School, graduating in 1949. After his death in 1955, Dean was buried in Park Cemetery. In 1996, a small Memorial Park north of the town's business district was dedicated in his memory with a bronze bust by Hollywood artist Kenneth Kendall.
During the prosperity of the 1960s, Fairmount enjoyed a time of building with a new town hall, water works, post office and elementary school. At the end of the decade the local school district merged with a neighboring one, forming the Madison-Grant united school district. A new high school was built for this district, and Fairmount High School became a middle school. When a new junior high school was opened in 1986, the Fairmount High School building was permanently closed.
Fairmount was hit hard by the recession of 1980–1982, which brought the permanent loss of factory jobs and the failure of many farms, but rebounded later in the decade. Fairmount is still relatively prosperous despite the ill fortunes of nearby industrial cities and a steady loss of population.
In September 1988, The James Dean Gallery opened in a restored Victorian House on North Main Street. Over the years the Museum Exhibit has been toured by nearly 200,000 visitors who come from around the world to visit the hometown of James Dean. Also in 1988, English musician Morrissey filmed the music video for his single "Suedehead", a song inspired by his lifelong admiration of Dean, in the town.
The annual James Dean Festival takes place during the last full weekend in September and includes a Custom & Hot Rod Car Show, The Grand Parade, Street Fair, Carnival Rides, Live Entertainment, a 1950s Dance Contest and the James Dean lookalike Contest.
On September 30 of each year there is a Memorial Service for James Dean at The Back Creek Friends Church, south of The Winslow Farm.
Madison-Grant United School Corporation operates public schools.
Schools serving Fairmount:
- Park Elementary School (Fairmount)
- Madison-Grant Junior High School (unincorporated area)
- Madison-Grant High School (unincorporated area)
The town has a lending library, the Fairmount Public Library.
- James Dean, actor, was raised in Fairmount. Dean graduated from Fairmount High School, and is buried in Park Cemetery in Fairmount.
- Jim Davis, cartoonist, creator of the comic strip Garfield, was raised in Fairmount. Davis graduated from Fairmount High School in 1963.
- Robert Sheets, former director of the National Hurricane Center in Coral Gables, Florida. Sheets is a 1955 graduate of Fairmount High School and attended Ball State University in nearby Muncie.
- Mary Jane Ward, author of several books including The Snake Pit, a Book of the Month Club selection which became a motion picture starring Olivia de Havilland.
- Olive Rush, artist, painter, was a Quaker descended from one of the town's founders. She was noted as a founder of the art colony in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
- "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 28, 2017.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 11, 2012.
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. October 25, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. February 12, 2011. Retrieved April 23, 2011.
- "G001 - Geographic Identifiers - 2010 Census Summary File 1". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 16, 2015.
- "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
- Shouse, Cathy Duling (2010). Fairmount. Arcadia Publishing. p. 7. ISBN 978-0-7385-8401-0.
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
- "Indiana public library directory" (PDF). Indiana State Library. Retrieved March 7, 2018.
- Pohlen, Jerome (April 1, 2002). Oddball Indiana: A Guide to Some Really Strange Places. Chicago Review Press. pp. 94–95. ISBN 978-1-56976-518-0.
- Rush Family History