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In the late 1800s, a group of settlers viewed what is now known as Peoria as a potentially profitable piece of farming land, which led to the construction of the Grand Canal by the Arizona Canal Company in 1882.
In 1919, the Peoria Chamber of Commerce was formed and up until the town was incorporated in 1954, the local business organization acted as the informal governmental body. During the 1920s, Peoria farmers supported a diverse selection of crops, including cotton, citrus, wheat, rye, corn, and even raising sheep.
The end of the Second World War brought a new wave of settlers to Peoria. Two influencing factors were the advances in air conditioning technology and the construction of Luke Air Force Base. In 1952, Peoria’s population was just shy of 2,000; however the town grew rapidly alongside neighboring metropolitan cities throughout the 70s and 80s.
Peoria continued to grow throughout the 1990s and 2000s, bringing many new home communities and businesses to the area.
Peoria is 141.7 square miles (367 km2) of total land area of which 3.5 square miles (9.1 km2) is water. Peoria is town limits are in both Maricopa County and Yavapai County.
2010 U.S. Census Population: 154,065
85.0% White (64.3% Non-Hispanic White Alone)
15.4% Hispanics or Latinos
2.8% Black or African American
0.7% American Indian and Alaskan Native
0.1% Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander
7.1% from Some Other Race
2.5% from Two or More Races
Per capita income: $22,726 (2000 U.S. Census)
Median household income: $52,199 (2000 U.S. Census)
Leading industries: commercial, industrial, agriculture, tourism
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