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Palestine ( /ˈpælɛstiːn/
is a city in
Texas, in the
United States. As of the
2000 census, the city population
was 17,598, and 18,458 in the 2009 estimate.
It is the
county seat of
and is situated in
East Texas. Palestine was named for
Palestine, Illinois, by
The largest employer is the
Texas Department of Criminal Justice,
which employs more than 3,900. Another 1,600 work at two
Wal-Mart distribution centers.
Other significant employers include a thriving medical and
healthcare sector that tends to the large population of retirees.
Palestine entered the news in February 2003,
as one of the East Texas towns that received much of the debris from
Space Shuttle Columbia disaster,
where seven astronauts were killed, including the first
Israeli astronaut. Palestine is
also home to the
Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility
(renamed after the shuttle crash), which has flown 1700
high-altitude balloons for universities and research agencies.
Palestine was settled in 1846 and grew
significantly following the arrival of the railroad in the 1870's.
Palestine is located at
/ 31.75806; -95.63861
According to the
United States Census Bureau, the
city has a total area of 17.9 square miles (46 km2), of
which, 17.7 square miles (46 km2) of it is land and 0.2
square miles (0.52 km2) of it (1.01%)is water.
- The average warmest month is July.
- The highest recorded temperature was
114°F in 1954.
- On average, the coolest month is January.
- The lowest recorded temperature was -4°F
- The maximum average precipitation occurs
As of the
of 2000, there were 17,598 people, 6,641 households, and 4,582
families residing in the city. The
population density was 994.3 people
per square mile (383.9/km²). There were 7,668 housing units at an
average density of 433.2 per square mile (167.3/km²). The racial
makeup of the city was 64.60%
African American, 0.49%
Native American, 0.79%
Pacific Islander, 7.90% from
other races, and 1.37% from two or
Latino of any race were 14.88% of
the population. - - There were 6,641 households out of which 34.9%
had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.2% were
married couples living together,
18.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.0%
were non-families. 28.0% of all households were made up of
individuals and 13.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of
age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average
family size was 3.13. - - In the city the population was spread out
with 29.1% under the age of 18, 9.2% from 18 to 24, 25.6% from 25 to
44, 20.0% from 45 to 64, and 16.2% who were 65 years of age or
older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were
84.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.2
males. - - The median income for a household in the city was
$30,497, and the median income for a family was $36,806. Males had a
median income of $28,331 versus $20,662 for females. The
per capita income for the city was
$15,514. About 16.6% of families and 20.7% of the population were
poverty line, including 27.7% of
those under age 18 and 14.6% of those age 65 or over.
The Dogwood Trails Festival occurs each
Spring, the last 2 weekends of March and the 1st weekend in April,
in Palestine, spanning 3 consecutive weekends.
The Dogwood Jamboree is held every two months
at the Palestine Civic Center. The country and western concert is
hosted by Dan Manuel and a variety of country and western artists.
Each performance always features new talent, young, older and in
between. The newest addition to the Dogwood Jamboree features talent
competition developing young artists under the age of eighteen.
Attendees come all over the nation and foreign countries to see the
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