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Montpelier is a city in Bear Lake Countymarker, Idahomarker, United Statesmarker. The population was 2,785 at the 2000 census. The city is the largest community in the Bear Lake Valley, a farming region north of Bear Lakemarker in southeastern Idahomarker along the Utahmarker border. It was settled in 1863 by Mormon pioneers on the route of the Oregon Trail.


Like most western towns, the name has been changed numerous times. First it was known as Clover Creek by Oregon Trail travelers, later it became Belmont and finally was given the name Montpelier by Brigham Young, one of the founding fathers of Mormonism, after a town in his birth state of Vermont. In 1892 the railroad was extended to Montpelier, with a terminal being located here until 1972. The railroad brought a population that made Montpelier the county's "Gentile Town" as opposed to nearby Mormon-run Parismarker that was the county seat. Both cities would have tabernacles built in their city limits.

U.S. Routes 89 and 30 intersect in Montpelier.

In 1896 Montpelier was the site of a bank heist by Butch Cassidy, members of Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch Elzy Lay and Bob Meeks who were supposedly trying to get enough money to bail out fellow gang member Matt Warner. This historical footnote has become a significant component of the town's identity and is commemorated by a plaque on Washington Street (Highway 89).


Montpelier is located at (42.320416, -111.303703) .

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.8 square miles (4.8 km²), all of it land.


As of the census of 2000, there were 2,785 people, 1,012 households, and 715 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,512.3 people per square mile (584.4/km²). There were 1,171 housing units at an average density of 635.9/sq mi (245.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.70% White, 0.61% Native American, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 1.97% from other races, and 0.68% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.81% of the population.

There were 1,012 households out of which 38.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.7% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.3% were non-families bringing to a total of 135.2% (????) 26.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.70 and the average family size was 3.31.

In the city the population was spread out with 32.3% under the age of 18, 8.3% from 18 to 24, 23.6% from 25 to 44, 19.4% from 45 to 64, and 16.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 96.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $29,693, and the median income for a family was $33,639. Males had a median income of $32,218 versus $15,227 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,364. About 9.2% of families and 12.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.6% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.


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