Hercules is a medium-sized coastal city (i.e. on the ocean, a bay, or inlet) located in the state of California. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 18.2 square miles, of which, 6.2 square miles of it is land and 12.0 square miles of it (65.87%) is water. With a population of 24,848 people and six constituent neighborhoods, Hercules is the 281st largest community in California.
Upon relocating its operations from San Francisco in 1881, California Powder Works established company housing in the area that is now the city of Hercules. The city was named after the company’s leading product, in turn, named after the Roman hero, Hercules.
Hercules contributed significantly to the production of explosives during both World Wars. By the Second World War, the plant had diversified to produce fertilizers and other chemical products. However, by this time the surrounding area was experiencing rapid growth as the commuter belt moved further outward from San Francisco. By the mid-1970s Centex Homes and other developers began to build new subdivisions and changed Hercules into a residential suburb.
In the 1970s, Hercules was one of the first cities in the United States to develop a comprehensive Noise Element of the General Plan. This work included the production of noise contour maps for all major highways and arterial roads, as well as a city-wide mitigation plan.
Hercules was incorporated in 1900. The first post office was established in 1914. By the 1940s Hercules organized its own law enforcement department and longtime Hercules Powder Company employee William Darke was named sheriff, becoming its first officer.
Hercules is a decidedly white-collar city, with fully 88.68% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, Hercules is a city of sales and office workers, professionals and managers. There are especially a lot of people living in Hercules who work in office and administrative support (17.88%), management occupations (10.41%) and sales jobs (9.23%).
Also of interest is that Hercules has more people living here who work in computers and math than 95% of the places in the US.
Hercules Information and Demographics
The citizens of Hercules are among the most well-educated in the nation: 40.96% of adults in Hercules have a bachelor’s degree or even advanced degree, whereas the average US city has 21.84% holding at least a bachelor’s degree.
The per capita income in Hercules in 2010 was $36,793, which is upper middle income relative to California, and wealthy relative to the rest of the US. This equates to an annual income of $147,172 for a family of four.
Hercules is an extremely ethnically-diverse city. The people who call Hercules home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Hercules residents report their race to be Asian, followed by White. Hercules also has a sizeable Hispanic population (people of Hispanic origin can be of any race). People of Hispanic or Latino origin account for 15.19% of the city’s residents.
In addition, Hercules has a lot of people living here who were born outside of the US (32.63%).
The languages spoken by people in Hercules are also diverse. These are tabulated as the languages people preferentially speak when they are at home with their families. The most common language spoken in Hercules is English. Other important languages spoken here include Tagalog, Spanish, Chinese and Indic languages.