A Gazetteer for the United States and Canada

Jonesboro, Arkansas

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Census Data for Jonesboro ...

Population ...

The most recent Census Estimate<1> was for 2016 and it gives Jonesboro a population of 74,889 people.

The last Decennial Census<2> was in 2010, giving Jonesboro a population of 67,263 people.

The city of Jonesboro is located in Craighead County. The 2010 Census gave Craighead County a population of 96,443 people. This means that Jonesboro had 69.7% of the county's total population, making it Craighead's most populous community.

At the same time, Arkansas had a population of 2,915,918 people, meaning that Jonesboro had 2.31% of the total population of Arkansas - making it the state's 5th most populous community.

Area ...

When the Census Bureau conducts a census for a city like Jonesboro, they draw a boundary around the area in which they are going to conduct their count - this is called a sampling area (or a polygon). The shape of the sampling area can be quite complex and it's important to keep in mind that the boundaries of the sampling area may or may not match the recognized boundaries of the city.

Things like the population, area and housing for Jonesboro reflect the sampling area. Since the shape of the sampling area and the actual boundaries of Jonesboro might be slightly different, it's best to check with the U.S. Census Bureau if you need precision.

The 2010 Census shows that the sample polygon for Jonesboro has a total area of 80.4 square miles [208.4 km²]. Of this total, a small amount of the area is covered by water (0.58 square miles [1.5 km²]).

Craighead County has a land area of 707 square miles [1,831.7 km²]. At 79.9 square miles [206.9 km²], Jonesboro has 11.29% of the county's total land area.

Not only does the sampling area define boundaries, it also has a GPS location (latitude & longitude) that indicates a point within the sampling area (usually at the center of the polygon). At the time of the 2010 Census, the sampling area was located at:

Lat:   35° 49' 11"   (or 35.82°)             [Map]

Lon:   -90° 40' 44"   (or -90.68°)

More information on this topic and the changes between the 2000 Census and the 2010 Census can be found in the section for our Census-to-Census Observations ... (see below).

Population Density ...

Using the population (67,263 people) and land area (79.9 square miles [206.9 km²]) values from the 2010 Census, Jonesboro had a population density of 836 people per square mile [322.8 people/km²].

In comparison, the 2000 Census shows Jonesboro had a population of 55,515 people and a land area of 79.6 square miles [206.3 km²]. This gives a population density of 693 people per square mile [267.9 people/km²]

NOTE: Be aware that when comparing population density between the 2000 and the 2010 Census, there were changes in the sampling area for Jonesboro. You need to be careful when making such a comparison, the differences are likely to lead to a misleading comparison. More information about the changes can be found in the section Census-to-Census Observations ... (see below).

Housing Units ...

At the time of the 2010 Census, Jonesboro had 28,321 Housing Units<3> and with its population of 67,263 people, this averages 2.38 people per Housing Unit.

The 2010 Census shows Jonesboro had a land area of 79.9 square miles [206.9 km²]. This translates to 352.1 Housing Units per square mile [135.9 housing units/km²].

From the Census of 2000: Jonesboro had 24,263 Housing Units, a population of 55,515 people and a land area of 79.6 square miles [206.3 km²]. This gives a density of 2.29 people per Housing Unit and 303.3 Housing Units per square mile [117.1 housing units/km²].

NOTE: Repeating the caution above (under Population Density), be aware that when comparing Housing Units between the 2000 and the 2010 Census, there were changes in the sampling area for Jonesboro and you need to be careful when comparing values between the censuses. More information about the changes can be found in the section called Census-to-Census Observations ... (see below).

Craighead County ...

The community of Jonesboro is located in Craighead County and is the County Seat for Craighead County.

The county had a population of 96,443 people at the 2010 Census. With it's population of 67,263 people, Jonesboro represented 69.7% of the county's total.

In addition, where the city of Jonesboro has a population density of 836 people per square mile [322.8 people/km²], Craighead County averages 136.4 people per square mile [52.7 people/km²].

For more information, please visit our Census Page for Craighead County.

Population Rings for Jonesboro ...

To help identify the number of people who live in Jonesboro and the surrounding area, we have drawn concentric rings centered on Jonesboro. We counted the number of communities within each ring and summed their populations.<4>

  Radius   No of
  Since 2010    
5 mi   [8 km]174,889+11.34%
10 mi   [16 km]482,083+12.69%
15 mi   [24 km]992,240+11.44%
20 mi   [32 km]15126,576+10.14%
25 mi   [40 km]28141,672+8.54%
30 mi   [48 km]42152,108+7.66%

Census-to-Census Observations ...

Introduction ...

When the Census Bureau takes a census count (or enumeration) for Jonesboro, they start by specifying the boundaries of the area to be counted. This area (or sampling area) is a polygon and its shape can be quite complex - it may or may not match the geographical boundaries of Jonesboro. It's important to note that from one Census to the next, the shape and location of the polygon can change. If you need precision or details about the methodology of the Census, you should visit the U.S. Census Bureau for a definitive answer.

Area ...

The sampling area (or polygon) given for the 2010 Census is 0.56% larger than the 2000 Census.

The 2010 Census shows that the total area for Jonesboro was 80.4 square miles [208.4 km²]. Of this total, 79.9 square miles [206.9 km²] is land, with the balance (0.72%) being water (0.58 square miles [1.5 km²]).

The 2000 Census shows a total area of 80 square miles [207.2 km²]. Of this total, only a minor amount of the area is covered by water.

Location ...

While generally coinciding with the GPS location (latitude/longitude) of Jonesboro, the latitude and longitude given by the Census Bureau actually indicates the GPS location of the polygon for Jonesboro.

For the 2010 Census, the location was given as:

Lat:   35.819733°   (or 35°49'11" N)             [Map]

Lon:   -90.679050°   (or -90°40'44" W)

For the 2000 Census, the location given was:

Lat:   35.828067°   (or 35°49'41" N)             [Map]

Lon:   -90.694048°   (or -90°41'38" W)

The difference indicates that the U.S. Census Bureau moved the location of the polygon for the 2010 Census 5,374 feet to the southeast<5> of the location that was used in the 2000 Census.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Board on Geographic Names (BGN) have assigned a unique GNIS identifier (#2404811) to Jonesboro. This identifier also marks a GSP point on the map, and that point lies within the boundaries of Jonesboro. The GNIS point has been mapped to the latitude/longitude:

Lat:   35.820971°   (or 35°49'15" N)             [Map]

Lon:   -90.679225°   (or -90°40'45" W)

The GSP location given for the 2010 Census lies 454.3 feet to the south<6> of the point given by the GNIS for Jonesboro. For more information about this and the relationship of the various Federal Codes, please visit our Misc Page for Jonesboro.

Miscellaneous Information for Jonesboro ...

The Federal government has assigned various identifying codes to each community, county and state. At one time or another, the US Census Bureau has referenced one (or more) of the following identifiers when referring to either Craighead County or the city of Jonesboro:

The GNIS Codes ...

The current system of identification is called the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS). The following GNIS codes relate to Jonesboro:

GNIS ID for Jonesboro: 2404811

GNIS ID for Craighead County: 66847

GNIS ID for Arkansas: 68085

The FIPS Codes ...

An earlier (and largely obsolete) identification method was called the Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS):

State Code: 05 (Arkansas)

County Code: 031 (Craighead County)

Place Code: 35710 (Jonesboro)

State & County Code: 05/031 (Arkansas / Craighead County)

State & Place Code: 05/35710 (Arkansas / Jonesboro)

Misc. Census Codes ...

Jonesboro is located in Census Region #3 (the South Region) and Division #7 (the West South-Central Division).

The US Postal Service ZIP Code ...

While some people have used a ZIP code to identify a community, the purpose of the ZIP code was to make mail delivery more efficient by grouping addresses together. Although the ZIP Code doesn't specifically identify a city like Jonesboro, it does identify addresses that are in (or near) Jonesboro. It's important to remember that the boundaries of a ZIP Code can be changed, re-assigned or overlapped with other ZIP Codes.

The ZIP code for Jonesboro: 72401-72404<7>

Census ZCTA Codes ...

The US Census Bureau created statistical entities that they call ZIP Code Tabulation Areas (ZCTAs) and these ZCTAs are frequently confused with the ZIP codes that come from the US Postal Service (USPS).

ZCTAs were first created for the 2000 Census and at that time, they were based upon the USPS ZIP codes. While largely covering the same areas, the boundaries of a ZCTA do not necessarily match the boundaries of a postal ZIP code with the same number. For example, while a postal ZIP code can cross a county or state line, a Census ZCTA can not. They should be treated as separate entities with no correlation between them.

For more information about the various Federal identification codes, please visit our Misc Page for Jonesboro.

Other Roadside Stops ...

Index of Cities, Towns and Villages for Arkansas

About Craighead County

About Arkansas

Off-the-Road Links ...

The official website of the U.S. Census Bureau

The official website of the U.S. Board on Geographic Names (BGN)

The official website of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)

The official website for Jonesboro: www.jonesboro.org/

The official website for Craighead County: www.craigheadcounty.org/

The official website for State of Arkansas: www.arkansas.gov/

Footnotes ...

<1>Every year, the US Census Bureau creates a population estimate for the preceeding year. Keep in mind that this value is an estimate and not an actual count. The most recent Census estimate is for the year 2016.

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<2>Every 10 years (eg- 1990, 2000, 2010), the US Census Bureau conducts a Constitutionally-mandated count (or enumeration) of people living within the United States. This count is called a Decennial Census. The last Decennial Census was the 2010 Census, with the next one planned for 2020.

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<3>A Housing Unit is a broad term for those places where people live (whether occupied or temporarily vacant), such as a house, an apartment, a mobile home, or an area that is considered as a separate living quarter. Separate living quarters (consisting of one or more rooms) are considered to be those places where people live, sleep and eat separately from others and that have access to the outside (either directly or by a shared hallway).

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<4>The communities in our count are those provided by the 2010 Census, so keep in mind that our population rings will only include the people living in those communities. Smaller communities usually don't participate directly in the Census and therefore they won't be included. While our count is a close approximation, it shouldn't be considered as a complete or accurate count.

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<5>The calculated bearing (or the angle) to the 2010 Census location is 235 degrees.

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<6>The calculated bearing (or the angle) to the GNIS point is 186 degrees.

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<7>When looking for a ZIP Code, whether Jonesboro or elsewhere, it's always best to check the website of the United States Postal Service (USPS).

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For additional information, please visit our Glossary for Jonesboro.