city, seat (1802-10; 1873) of Clark county, southern Indiana, U.S. It lies along the Ohio River (there bridged) at the head of the Falls of the Ohio, opposite Louisville, Ky. Built on land occupied by old Fort Steuben, it was laid out in 1802 on a plan suggested by President Thomas Jefferson, for whom it was named. The city prospered in the 19th century as a steamboat (river packet) building centre, turning out many paddle wheelers, including the renowned Natchez and J.M. White, but in 1937 it was inundated by river floodwaters. Located in an industrial and agricultural (grain, strawberries, tobacco) area, Jeffersonville is a barge terminal for river transportation and has shipyards. Fifty years after the last of the packet boats was built, the city produced the largest river steamboat made to that time, the 382-foot (116-metre) Mississippi Queen, commissioned in 1976 for luxury overnight cruises. Other manufactures include soap, kitchen cabinets, steel, and electronic components. Jeffersonville is the site of the Howard Steamboat Museum. Inc. town, 1815; city, 1830. Pop. (2000) 27,362; (2005 est.) 28,621.
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