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Joplin is a large city in southwestern Missouri, serving as the anchor of its surrounding metropolitan area. It's home to a thriving economy that provides plenty of local jobs, with enough variety and availability that the majority of residents stay in town for work rather than commuting. Despite its large size, Joplin offers a small-town feel combined with plenty of big-city conveniences.
The History of Joplin
The community of Joplin was named after Reverend Harris Joplin, the founder of the first Methodist congregation in the area. The city was established in 1873 and grew quickly as the zinc mining in the area created a thriving, wealthy economy. Throughout the early 20th century, Joplin expanded and evolved, adding amenities and nurturing a growing population.
After World War II, the price of zinc collapsed, leading to a halt in the city's growth. Most of Joplin's mines were closed, and the population stabilized. During the 1960s and '70s, large portions of the city were razed in order to provide space for revitalized development.
The Joplin Economy
Joplin has a healthy, diversified economy that includes many large corporations and organizations. Because the city is located near the population and geographical centers of the country, it's been chosen as the headquarters for several major trucking lines. In addition, because of its proximity to two highways and the many venues in the city, Joplin is a popular host for large-scale conferences and events. This fuels a thriving leisure and hospitality industry, and also helps to contribute to the growth of many businesses in its downtown area.
Major employers in Joplin span a variety of industries. If you're looking for a job in the city, a good place to start could be at one of these companies or organizations: Freeman Health System, Con-way Truckload, Mercy Hospital Joplin, Joplin Schools and Eagle-Picher.
The Joplin Schools district oversees the public schools of the city. It offers a number of programs and activities including flexible programs, sports, arts, extracurricular activities and free or reduced lunch options. There are also many private schools in Joplin, providing both faith-based and secular campus options.
The city is home to several institutions of higher education, including Missouri Southern State University, Vatterott College and the Franklin Technology Center.
Resources for Moving to Joplin
Here are a few handy resources for planning your move to Joplin:
- Utilities: The Empire District Electric Co. is the primary energy provider for Joplin and many of its neighbors. The city manages water and sewer services.
- Garbage and Recycling: The city contracts with Republic Services for curbside trash collection, offering the option of signing up for recycling services as well.
- Transportation: Public transportation options in Joplin include the Sunshine Lamp Trolley and the Metro Area Public Transit System.
Because Joplin is such a large city, it has an extremely wide range of housing options to offer. Whether you want a compact studio apartment or a spacious, single-family home, you'll have plenty of options to choose from. It's also a very affordable place to live, with a median home price that's considerably lower than the national average.