Independence is the fifth-largest city in the U.S. state of Missouri. It 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, it had a total population of 116,830.
Independence is known as the "Queen City of the Trails" because it was a point of departure for the California, Oregon, and Santa Fe Trails. Independence was also the hometown of U.S. President Harry S. Truman; the Truman Presidential Library and Museum is located in the city, as are the gravesites of Truman and First Lady Bess Truman. The city is also sacred to many Latter Day Saints, as the home of Joseph Smith's 1831 Temple Lot, and the headquarters of several Latter Day Saint factions.
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 in 1803. Lewis and Clark recorded 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. Independence was also a stopping point for the "Donner Party", an ill fated group of 19th Century wagon train emigrants whose westward journey along the California Trail ended in disaster; spawning one of the most well known and taboo stories of pioneer era America.