Sunday, September 29, 2019

Hughes, Arkansas -- A small town becoming smaller

Hughes, Arkansas, is in St. Francis County, in the far East Central part of the state.

In 2010, Hughes’ population was 1,441, a decline of 426 from the 2000 census. Hughes’ largest population was 1,919, in 1980.

Racial/ethnic breakdown shows 67.76% black or African-American; 29.41% white of varied ethnic backgrounds; 1.61% Asian from a large part of the Earth; 0.11% Pacific Islander, whose ancestors are not quite near Asia to be considered Asian; 0.43% from other races; 0.59 from two or more races; and 0.70% Hispanic or Latino, from one or several races. (Thanks to the federal government’s race-keepers for the information.)

In 2000, the per capita income for the city was $10,039. About 31.7% of families and 38% of the population overall lived below the federally-established poverty line.

The Federal Reserve Bank in St. Louis says the July 2019 unemployment rate in St. Francis County was 5.7%. St. Francis ranks 66 out of 75 counties, says. Chicot County in far Southeast Arkansas, ranks 75th, with an unemployment rate of 7.7%.

In 2015, the school district in Hughes was ordered to merge with that of West Memphis.

Here is a link to an interesting article, “How to Destroy a Town,” with photographs that are similar to other small towns in Arkansas:

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