Independence is the fourth-largest city in the state of Missouri. Independence lies within Jackson County, of which it is the county seat.Independence is a satellite city of Kansas City, Missouri, and is part of the Kansas City metropolitan area. In 2010, Independence had a total population of 116,830.
Independence was originally inhabited by Missouri and Osage Indians, followed by the Spanish and a brief French tenure. It became part of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. Lewis and Clarkrecorded in their journals that they stopped in 1804 to pick plums, raspberries, and wild apples at a site that would later form part of the city.Named after the Declaration of Independence, Independence was founded on March 29, 1827, and quickly became an important frontier town. Independence was the farthest point westward on the Missouri River where steamboats or other cargo vessels could travel, due to the convergence of theKansas River with the Missouri River approximately six miles west of town, near the current Kansas-Missouri border. Independence immediately became a jumping-off point for the emerging fur trade, accommodating merchants and adventurers beginning the long trek westward on the Santa Fe Trail.In 1831, members of the Latter Day Saint movement began moving to the Jackson County, Missouri area. Shortly thereafter, founder Joseph Smith declared a spot west of the Courthouse Square to be the place for his prophesied temple of the New Jerusalem, in expectation of the Second Coming of Christ. Tension grew with local Missourians until the Latter Day Saints were driven from the area in 1833, the beginning of a conflict which culminated in the 1838 Mormon War. Several branches of this movement gradually returned to the city beginning in 1867, with many making their headquarters there. These include the Community of Christ (formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints), the Church of Christ (Temple Lot), the Church of Jesus Christ (Cutlerite) and the Restoration Branches.