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Phoenix, Ariz.

Mayor: Greg Stanton (to Jan. 2015)

2010 census population (rank): 1,445,632 (6); Male: 725,020 (50.2%); Female: 720,285 (49.8%); White: 951,958 (65.9%); Black: 93,608 (6.5%); American Indian and Alaska Native: 32,336 (2.2%); Asian: 45,597 (3.2%); Other race: 267,214 (18.5%); Two or more races: 52,334 (3.6%); Hispanic/Latino: 589,877 (40.8%). 2010 percent population 18 and over: 71.8%; 65 and over: 8.4%; Median age: 32.2.

2012 population estimate (rank): 1,488,750 (6)

See additional census data

Land area: 475 sq mi. (1,230 sq km);

Alt.: Highest, 2,740 ft.; lowest, 1,017 ft.

Avg. daily temp.: Jan., 53.6° F; July, 93.5° F

City-owned parks: 200+ (25,235 ac.);

Radio stations: AM, 20; FM, 20;

Television stations: 9 commercial; 1 PBS

Civilian Labor Force (MSA) June 2012: 2,032,6001;

Unemployed: 150,6001,

Percent: 7.41;

Per capita personal income (MSA) 2012 $24,460

Chamber of Commerce: Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, 201 N. Central, Phoenix, AZ 85073

1. Phoenix–Mesa–Scottsdale, Ariz.

Phoenix, the capital of Arizona and seat of Maricopa County, is the largest city in the state. It is located in the center of Arizona, on the Salt River.

The prehistoric Hohokam Indians first settled the area about 300 B.C. and dug a system of extensive irrigation canals for farming. The Indian culture mysteriously broke up in the 1400s.

The site was permanently resettled by Jack Swilling and “Lord Darrell” Duppa about 1867. Because the city was founded on the ruins of the ancient civilization, it was named Phoenix after the legendary bird that could regenerate itself. The irrigation canals were restored for farming, and ranching and prospecting began in the surrounding area. The city quickly grew as an important trading center. Phoenix was incorporated as a city in 1881 and was made the territorial capital in 1889. It became the state capital when Arizona was admitted to the Union in 1912.

Partly owing to its warm, dry climate, the city developed rapidly in the decades after World War II. Between 1950 and 1990 the population increased from 100,000 to 980,000. Phoenix continued was one of the fastest-growing cities in the U.S. between 1990 and 2000 when its population increased another 34%, to 1.3 million. A more modest 9% increase brought its numbers to 1.44 million in 2010.

Phoenix is a commercial and manufacturing center in an agricultural region. Major industries include government, agricultural products, aerospace technology, electronics, air-conditioning, leather goods, and Indian arts and crafts. Mining, timbering, and tourism also contribute to the economy.

See also Encyclopedia: Phoenix .

Selected famous natives and residents:

  • Lynda Carter actress;
  • Joan Ganz Cooney TV executive;
  • Alice Cooper musician;
  • Arthur A. Fletcher government official;
  • Barry Goldwater politician;
  • Stevie Nicks musician;
  • Charles S. Robb politician;
  • Mare Winningham actress.

Information Please® Database, © 2007 Pearson Education, Inc. All rights reserved.

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