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Muncie ( ) is a city in Center Townshipmarker, Delaware Countymarker in east central Indianamarker, best known as the home of Ball State Universitymarker and the birthplace of the Ball Corporation. It is the principal city of the Muncie, Indiana Metropolitan Statistical Area, which has a population of 118,769. The population within city limits, as of a 2000 Census, was 65,287.


The area was first settled in the 1770s by the Delaware Indians, who had been transported from their tribal lands near the east coast to Ohio and eastern Indiana. They founded several towns along the White River including Munsee Town (according to historical map of "The Indians" by Clark Ray), near the site of present-day Muncie. The tribes were forced to cede their land to the federal government and move farther west in 1818, and in 1820 the area was opened to white settlers. Muncie was one of the considerations for state capital when it was moved from Corydon. It was considered by many to be a suitable location due to its location on the White River. The city of Muncie was incorporated in 1865. Contrary to popular legend, the city is not named after a mythological Chief Munsee, rather it was named after Munsee Town, the white settlers' name for the Indian village on the site, "munsee" meaning a member of the Delaware tribe.

Muncie was lightly disguised as "Middletown" by a team of sociologists, led by Robert and Helen Lynd, who were only the first to conduct a series of studies in Muncie—considered a typical Middle-American community—in their case, a study funded by the Rockefeller Institute of Social and Religious Research. In 1929, the Lynds published Middletown: A Study in Contemporary American Culture. They returned to re-observe the community during the Depression and published Middletown in Transition: A Study in Cultural Conflicts (1937). Later in the century, the National Science Foundation funded a third major study that resulted in two books by Theodore Caplow, Middletown Families (1982) and All Faithful People (1983). Caplow returned in 1998 to begin another study, Middletown IV, which became part of a PBS Documentary entitled "The First Measured Century," released in December 2000. The Ball State Center for Middletown Studies continues to survey and analyze social change in Muncie. An enormous database of the Middletown surveys conducted between 1978 and 1997 is available online from ARDA, American Religion Data Archive. Ironically, a Henry County farming community actually called Middletownmarker, is only a 20-minute drive from Muncie.


As of the 2006 census estimate, there were 65,287 people living in Muncie. As of the 2000 census, there were 27,322 households, and 14,589 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,788.2 people per square mile (1,076.7/km²). There were 30,205 housing units at an average density of 1,248.9/sq mi (482.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 83.72% White, 12.97% African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.79% Asian, 0.09% Pacific Islander, 0.67% from other races, and 1.49% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.44% of the population.

There were 27,322 households out of which 23.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.4% were married couples living together, 13.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 46.6% were non-families. 34.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 2.86.

In the city the population was spread out with 19.8% under the age of 18, 24.6% from 18 to 24, 24.2% from 25 to 44, 18.3% from 45 to 64, and 13.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29 years. For every 100 females there were 89.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $26,613, and the median income for a family was $36,398. Males had a median income of $30,445 versus $21,872 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,814. About 14.3% of families and 23.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.2% of those under age 18 and 9.7% of those age 65 or over.


Since the late 19th century, Muncie’s economic backbone had been the in the industrial sector, primarily in manufacturing. Drawn to the region during the Indiana Gas Boom of the 1880s, many factories sprang up in the area that relied on the combustible natural resource. The Ball Brothers moved their glass factory from Buffalo to Muncie, beginning glass production there on March 1, 1888. Notable factories that employed a sizable amount of the population include Delco Remy, Westinghouse (later ABB), Indiana Steel and Wire, General Motors (New Venture Gear), Warner Gear (later BorgWarner), Broderick Co. Inc., Dayton-Walter, and Ball Corporation. However, most of these factories closed during a tumultuous period for the city from the late 1980s and late 1990s. As of 2006, the only aforementioned factory/corporation still in business was BorgWarner Inc. which closed in the month of April, 2009. However, smaller, non-unionized manufacturing businesses have survived this transition such as Maxon Corporation, Duffy Tool, Reber Machine & Tool, and a dozen or so other shops that employ anywhere from a few dozen to a couple of hundred workers.

Ball Memorial Hospital Complex

Like many mid-sized cities in the Rust Belt, Muncie has had to economically reinvent itself due to the collective fall of the manufacturing industry in the latter part of the 20th century. Muncie’s current economic backbone is in health care, education, retail, and other service industries. The largest employers in Muncie are Ball Memorial Hospital/Cardinal Health Services, Ball State Universitymarker, Muncie Community Schools, The City of Muncie, Sallie Mae, Wal-martmarker, and The Youth Opportunity Center. The local economy is one of the most controversial topics for Muncie residents, and the city has at times struggled to find cohesion between older unemployed/underemployed Muncie residents who strongly identify with the manufacturing oriented history of the city, and newer residents who identify with the city's shift to service industries. Muncie is clearly in a state of economic and social transition, but has experienced moderate economic growth in recent years despite a continued population decline.


Muncie City Hall, 2005.

Elementary schools

Middle schools

High schools

For other Delaware County high schools, click here.

Colleges and universities

Notable natives & residents

See also :Category:People from Muncie, Indiana.




See also


  1. Indiana Nonprofits: Community Profiles
  2. "The aim... was to study synchronously the interwoven trends that are the life of a small American city." Lynd and Lynd 1929: 3
  3. Hoover, Dwight W., A pictoral history of Indiana, Indiana University Press, 1980
  4. Ball State University Archives
  5. The article requested can not be found! Please refresh your browser or go back. (C7,20080325,,80214016,AR). | The Star Press - - Muncie, IN
  6. Ray Boltz
  8. Mary Jane Croft
  9. The Official Website of Garfield and Friends
  10. Jim Davis :: Profile
  11. http://query.nytimes.comgst/fullpage.html?res=950DE7DC123EF932A25751C0A96F948260 Emily Kimbrough
  12. [1]
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  16. Dave Duerson Past Stats, Statistics, History, and Awards -
  17. Brandon Gorin | NFL Football at
  18. Player Bio: Matt Painter :: Men's Basketball
  19. Purdue Official Athletic Site
  20. Welcome to AVCA - the American Volleyball Coaches Association
  21. Bonzi Wells Statistics -

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