Stuart, Florida

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Stuart, Florida
—  City  —
Downtown Stuart
Nickname(s): Sailfish Capital of the World
Location in Martin County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 27°11′32″N 80°14′35″W / 27.19222°N 80.24306°W / 27.19222; -80.24306Coordinates: 27°11′32″N 80°14′35″W / 27.19222°N 80.24306°W / 27.19222; -80.24306
Country United States
State Florida
County Martin
Town
City1914
Government
 • TypeCommission-Manager
 • Mayor & CommissionerJames Christie, Jr.
 • Vice Mayor & CommissionerEula Clark
 • Other CommissionersJeff Krauskopf, Troy McDonald, Kelly Glass-Leighton
 • City ManagerPaul Nicoletti
 • City Attorney
Area
 • Total8.5 sq mi (22 km2)
 • Land6.3 sq mi (16 km2)
 • Water2.2 sq mi (6 km2)
Elevation10 ft (3 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total14,633
 • Density1,721.5/sq mi (664.7/km2)
Time zoneEastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST)EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes34994-34997
Area code(s)772
FIPS code12-68875[1]
GNIS feature ID0291756[2]
 
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Stuart, Florida
—  City  —
Downtown Stuart
Nickname(s): Sailfish Capital of the World
Location in Martin County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 27°11′32″N 80°14′35″W / 27.19222°N 80.24306°W / 27.19222; -80.24306Coordinates: 27°11′32″N 80°14′35″W / 27.19222°N 80.24306°W / 27.19222; -80.24306
Country United States
State Florida
County Martin
Town
City1914
Government
 • TypeCommission-Manager
 • Mayor & CommissionerJames Christie, Jr.
 • Vice Mayor & CommissionerEula Clark
 • Other CommissionersJeff Krauskopf, Troy McDonald, Kelly Glass-Leighton
 • City ManagerPaul Nicoletti
 • City Attorney
Area
 • Total8.5 sq mi (22 km2)
 • Land6.3 sq mi (16 km2)
 • Water2.2 sq mi (6 km2)
Elevation10 ft (3 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total14,633
 • Density1,721.5/sq mi (664.7/km2)
Time zoneEastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST)EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes34994-34997
Area code(s)772
FIPS code12-68875[1]
GNIS feature ID0291756[2]
The Old Martin County Courthouse, built in 1937, now the Courthouse Cultural Center
The Gazebo on the grounds of the new courthouse complex
St. Mary's Episcopal Church, Hospital Avenue and East Ocean Boulevard
The historic Dudley-Bessey House on SW Atlanta Avenue is now a law office

Stuart is the only incorporated city of Martin County, Florida, on Florida's Treasure Coast. The population was 14,633 at the 2000 census. As of 2007, the population recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau is 15,964.[3] Stuart is the county seat of Martin County[4]. It is part of the Port St. Lucie, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Contents

Geography

Stuart is located at 27°11′32″N 80°14′35″W / 27.192163°N 80.243001°W / 27.192163; -80.243001.[5]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 8.5 square miles (22 km2), of which, 6.3 square miles (16 km2) is land and 2.2 square miles (5.7 km2) is water.

Climate

According to the Koppen Climate classification, Stuart, Florida lies in the tropical wet or Af climate type (all months of the year have a mean temperature above 64.4 F/18 C), rainfall in the driest month is 2.4 in/6 cm or higher). Like other areas along the south-central Florida Atlantic coast, Stuart is located in the broad transition zone from subtropical to tropical climates. As such, a few times each decade temperatures in Stuart will fall to near the freezing mark away from the beaches and coastal areas. There is no known record of snow or snow flurries in Stuart. Because of the year round warm and sunny weather, warm Atlantic seas, and location adjacent to the Gulf Stream Current, Stuart is one of the centers of charter fishing in Florida.

Stuart has two seasons - a hot and wet season (late May through October) and the warm and dry season (November through April). Like other areas in central and southern Florida, there is a distinct change in the mean direction in prevailing winds between these two seasons: During the wet season prevailing winds are from southeast (tropical) while during the dry season they are from the northwest (continental). While the wet season (summer) in Stuart can bring brief, but heavy rain (August averages over 8 inches/800 mm), the dry season (winter) can be so severe that often forest and brush fires are a concern, and water restrictions are imposed. Like most locations in Florida, Stuart enjoys a high number of sunny days, averaging 2900 hrs annually.

Over the years several tropical cyclones have passed near Stuart area. Major hurricanes impacted the Stuart area in 1928, 1933, 1947, 1949, and 1977 (Hurricane David). In the more recent past, in 2004, two tropical cyclones passed near Stuart, Frances and Jeanne causing moderate damage in the area. However, like most areas prone to tropical cyclones, a direct hit by a major hurricane is infrequent in Stuart.

Climate data for Stuart
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Average high °F (°C)74
(23)
76
(24)
78
(26)
81
(27)
85
(29)
89
(32)
90
(32)
90
(32)
88
(31)
84
(29)
80
(27)
76
(24)
82.9
(28.3)
Average low °F (°C)55
(13)
57
(14)
60
(16)
64
(18)
69
(21)
73
(23)
75
(24)
75
(24)
75
(24)
71
(22)
64
(18)
59
(15)
66.7
(19.3)
Precipitation inches (mm)2.5
(64)
3.3
(84)
5.0
(127)
3.1
(79)
4.7
(119)
7.0
(178)
6.4
(163)
8.1
(206)
7.7
(196)
6.4
(163)
4.1
(104)
2.6
(66)
61.26
(1,556)
Source: [1]

Demographics

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 14,633 people, 7,220 households, and 3,422 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,320.5 per square mile (896.0 /km2). There were 8,777 housing units at an average density of 1,391.9 per square mile (537.4 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 83.30% White, 12.33% African American, 0.26% Native American, 0.66% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 1.97% from other races, and 1.46% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.29% of the population.

There were 7,220 households out of which 15.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 34.7% were married couples living together, 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 52.6% were non-families. 46.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 26.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.88 and the average family size was 2.60.

In the city the population was spread out with 14.5% under the age of 18, 6.9% from 18 to 24, 24.5% from 25 to 44, 21.2% from 45 to 64, and 32.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 48 years. For every 100 females there were 87.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.4 males.

Public health and safety

There were only 12 registered sex offenders living in Stuart, Florida in April, 2010. The ratio of number of residents in Stuart to the number of sex offenders is 1,333.33 residents to 1 sex offender, not including those incarcerated in the Martin County Jail (also within the City).[6]

Economy

Personal income

The median income for a household in the city was $30,574, and the median income for a family was $40,701. Males had a median income of $29,151 versus $23,125 for females. The per capita income for the city was $21,139. About 7.8% of families and 11.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.5% of those under age 18 and 9.1% of those age 65 or over.

The cost of living in Stuart is 146.62, which is higher than the U.S.average of 100.[7]

Cost of LivingStuartU.S.
Overall147100
Food106100
Utilities97100
Miscellaneous106100

Industry

Various businesses cater to tourists, such as fishing charters, boating charters, sailing, cruises , SCUBA and snorkeling, and nature tours

Top employers

According to the City's 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[8] the top employers in the Stuart area are:

#Employer# of Employees
1Martin Health System2,825
2Martin County School District2,566
3Martin County1,566
4Publix1,276
5State of Florida637
6iVox Solutions532
7TurboCombustor Technology420
8Winn-Dixie329
9Liberator Medical Supply319
10Florida Power & Light303

History

Stuart riverwalk before damage by hurricane Jeanne

In the 18th century, several Spanish galleons were shipwrecked in the Martin County area of Florida's Treasure Coast. The multiple wrecks were reportedly the result of a hurricane, and the ships were carrying unknown quantities of gold and silver. Some of this treasure has since been recovered, and its presence resulted in the region's name.

In 1832, pirate Pedro Gilbert who often used a sandbar off the coast as a lure to unsuspecting prey, chased and caught the Mexican, a US merchant ship. Although he attempted to burn the ship and kill the crew, they survived to report the incident, ultimately resulting in the capture and subsequent execution of Gilbert and his crew.The bar from which is lured his intended booty is named "Gilbert's Bar" on nautical charts.[9]

The Treasure Coast area that became Stuart was first settled by non-Native Americans in 1870. In 1875, a United States Lifesaving Station was established on Hutchinson Island, near Stuart. Today, the station is known as Gilbert's Bar House of Refuge and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

From 1893-1895, the area was called Potsdam. This name was chosen by Otto Stypmann, a local landowner originally from Potsdam, Germany. Stypmann, with his brother Ernest, owned the land that would become downtown Stuart. Potsdam was renamed Stuart in 1895, after the establishment of the Florida East Coast Railway, in honor of Homer Hine Stuart, Jr., another local landownder.[citation needed]

When Stuart was incorporated as a town in 1914, it was located in Palm Beach County. In 1925, Stuart was chartered as a city and named the county seat of the newly created Martin County.[10]

The city of Stuart is known as the Sailfish Capital of the World, because of the many sailfish found in the ocean off Martin County.

Between 1871 and 2005, 19 hurricanes have passed through Stuart, including Isbell (1964), Frances (2004), Jeanne (2004), and Wilma (2005).[11]

Transportation

Witham Field is a public-use airport located 1 mile southeast of the central business district.

Education

Neighborhoods inside city limits

Arts and culture

Florida panther at Possum Long, September, 1992

Notable natives and residents

References

External links