Bon Air, Virginia

From Academic Kids

Bon Air is a census-designated place and an unincorporated town located in Chesterfield County, Virginia. As of the 2000 census, the CDP had a total population of 16,213. The community is considered a suburb of the independent city of Richmond in the Richmond-Petersburg region. A central portion of Bon Air has been designated as a National Historical District with many structures of Victorian design from the late 19th and early 20th century.

Contents

Geography

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Location of Bon Air, Virginia

Bon Air is located at 37°31'12" North, 77°34'8" West (37.519947, -77.568768)Template:GR.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 22.9 km² (8.9 mi²). 22.9 km² (8.8 mi²) of it is land and 0.1 km² (0.04 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 0.23% water.

Demographics

As of the censusTemplate:GR of 2000, there are 16,213 people, 6,308 households, and 4,459 families residing in the CDP. The population density is 708.1/km² (1,834.1/mi²). There are 6,502 housing units at an average density of 284.0/km² (735.5/mi²). The racial makeup of the CDP is 86.91% White, 8.43% African American, 0.16% Native American, 2.53% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.85% from other races, and 1.10% from two or more races. 1.73% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 6,308 households out of which 32.8% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.6% are married couples living together, 9.6% have a female householder with no husband present, and 29.3% are non-families. 24.7% of all households are made up of individuals and 9.1% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.47 and the average family size is 2.97.

In the CDP the population is spread out with 26.6% under the age of 18, 5.7% from 18 to 24, 26.3% from 25 to 44, 27.7% from 45 to 64, and 13.7% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 40 years. For every 100 females there are 93.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 85.9 males.

The median income for a household in the CDP is $57,493, and the median income for a family is $67,656. Males have a median income of $42,796 versus $31,551 for females. The per capita income for the CDP is $26,527. 1.8% of the population and 0.8% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 0.9% of those under the age of 18 and 1.8% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.

History

The area came to be known as Brown's Summit, probably named for the Brown family farm which was located nearby along the old Warwick Road (near the southwest corner of present-day intersection of Belleau Drive and Jahnke and Brown Roads.

Bon Air: the resort era

Bon Air was originally a summer resort town miles outside of Richmond, Virginia. One of the founders was Colonel Algernon S. Buford, of Chatham, Virginia, who is best known for his presidency of the Richmond and Danville Railroad during its massive postwar expansion into the Southern Railway System (now part of Norfolk Southern).

Buford was a graduate of the University of Virginia, became a lawyer, and represented Pittsylvania County in the Virginia House of Delegates during 1853 and 1854. During the American Civil War, Buford served the Confederacy in Richmond at Virginia Depot. With the support of Virginia Governor Francis H. Pierpont, on September 13, 1865, Buford became president of the 140-mile Richmond and Danville Railroad (R&D).

Around 1875, Buford purchased a large tract of land known as the old Anderson Edwards plantation on the south side of the R&D right-of-way. He personally (as well as through the R&D Railroad) helped in the development of Brown's Summit, which was renamed Grand Summit, then Bon Air, after the French expression for good air. This choice may also have been related to the earlier settlement by French Huguenots, a group of religious refugees, slightly to the west.

In 1877, Buford was among the first investors and officers in the Bon Air Land and Improvement Company. Other R&D officials involved in the development of Bon Air were General Thomas M. Logan, Andrew Talcott, and his son, Thomas Mann Randolph Talcott. Col. Buford is honored by the naming of the thoroughfare Buford Road in Bon Air. Logan Street is named for General Logan.

Polk Street is named for Bon Air resident Polk Miller, a pharmacist and musician who founded what became Sergeant's Pet Care Products while creating treatments for his favorite hunting dog, Sergeant.

Other prominent residents included Dr. Hunter McGuire who was affiliated with the Medical College of Virginia and several other important hospitals and medical schools (and for whom McGuire Veterans Administration Hospital in Richmond was named), his wife Mary Stuart McGuire, and their 10 children, many of whom also went into the field of medicine.

Village Period

In the 20th century, as the residential area around Richmond grew, Bon Air evolved into a middle-class neighborhood. The Southern Railway ended commuter service to Richmond in 1957.

Schools

The public schools serving the area are Bon Air Elementary School, Robious Middle School and James River High School. St. Michael's Episcopal School and Riverside School Inc are also located in Bon Air. Bon Air Elementary was the inspiration for a series of children's books, The Kids of the Polk Street School by Patricia Reilly Giff.

Related Wikipedia Topics

The Bon Air Philosophical Society

External links

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