[muhk-fur-suhn, -feer-]
McPherson, Aimee Semple, 1890-1944, U.S. evangelist, founder of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel, and, in the 1920s and 30s, one of the most famous women in America, b. near Ingersoll, Ont. Born Aimee Elizabeth Kennedy, she was converted to Pentecostalism as a young girl and married a preacher, Robert Semple. The couple went as missionaries to China, and when he died a year later, she returned to the United States. Not long afterward she married Harold McPherson, but she left him in 1915 to take up a life of itinerant preaching, holding revival meetings along the Atlantic coast. With her mother, Minnie Kennedy, as business manager, she went to Los Angeles in 1918. There she became phenomenally successful and was noted for her healing sessions. In 1923, she opened Angelus Temple in Los Angeles and began to preach the foursquare gospel (see Foursquare Gospel, International Church of the) at the temple, in an evangelical newspaper, and on her own radio station. Her disappearance in May, 1926, while swimming in the Pacific, and then reappearance in June with a bizarre tale of kidnapping caused a huge uproar that resulted in a trial for fraud. Although she was acquitted, her business activities as head of Angelus Temple resulted in numerous other legal actions. She died as a result of an allegedly accidental overdose of sleeping pills.

See biographies by R. Bahr (1979, repr. 2001), E. L. Blumhofer (1993), D. M. Epstein (1993), and M. A. Sutton (2007).

McPherson, James Birdseye, 1828-64, Union general in the American Civil War, b. Sandusky co., Ohio. After teaching (1853-54) at West Point, he worked on various engineering projects. In the Civil War, he became aide-de-camp to General Halleck in Missouri and then chief engineer to Ulysses S. Grant in the Union advance through Tennessee. McPherson, promoted to brigadier general of volunteers in May, 1862, and major general in October, commanded the 17th Corps in the Vicksburg campaign, distinguishing himself at Port Gibson and Raymond. He commanded the Dist. of Vicksburg (July, 1863-Mar., 1864) and upon Grant's recommendation was made a brigadier general in the regular army (Aug., 1863). In the Atlanta campaign he ably commanded the Army of the Tennessee until he was killed in the battle of Atlanta (July 22).

See biography by E. J. Whaley (1955).

McPherson, city (1990 pop. 12,422), seat of McPherson co., central Kans., in a farm area on the old Santa Fe Trail; inc. 1874. The city has an oil refinery and factories that make plastics, railroad equipment, and motor vehicles. The city is named for Gen. James B. McPherson, the highest ranking Union general to die in the Civil War. McPherson College is there.

McPherson is a city in McPherson County, Kansas, United States, in the central part of the state. The population was 13,770 at the 2000 census. The city is named after General James Birdseye McPherson, a Civil War general.

It is the county seat of McPherson County and home to Central Christian College and McPherson College.


McPherson, Kansas, was founded in 1872. In 1887, city officials began a failed attempt to have the community named the state capital. By 1888, the community was at the junction of four railroad lines.

In 1994 Terry Nichols bought a ton of ammonium nitrate from the Mid-Kansas Coop in McPherson. The chemicals would be the principal ingredient used in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.


The first basketball team to represent the United States in the Olympics featured six McPherson residents of 13 total players. This team went on to defeat Canada 19-8 in the Gold Medal game at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin.


McPherson is located at (38.371923, -97.662177).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.2 square miles (16.1 km²), of which, 6.1 square miles (15.9 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²) of it (0.97%) is water.

The community is located on US Route 56, west of Interstate 135.


As of the census of 2000, there were 13,770 people, 5,378 households, and 3,651 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,241.6 people per square mile (865.9/km²). There were 5,658 housing units at an average density of 921.0/sq mi (355.8/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.11% White, 1.31% African American, 0.36% Native American, 0.41% Asian, 0.09% Pacific Islander, 1.21% from other races, and 1.50% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.92% of the population.

There were 5,378 households out of which 32.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.7% were married couples living together, 7.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.1% were non-families. 27.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 2.97.

In the city the population was spread out with 25.6% under the age of 18, 11.6% from 18 to 24, 26.4% from 25 to 44, 20.8% from 45 to 64, and 15.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 94.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $40,469, and the median income for a family was $48,882. Males had a median income of $33,831 versus $20,633 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,716. About 5.1% of families and 7.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.8% of those under age 18 and 9.4% of those age 65 or over.


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