Monroe:1 Industrial city (1990 pop. 54,909), seat of Ouachita parish, SE La., on the Ouachita River; founded c.1785, inc. as a city 1900. The center of the great Monroe Natural Gas Field (discovered 1915), it has important chemical plants, as well as pulp, paper, and lumber mills. Automotive parts are also manufactured. The first settlers founded (c.1785) Fort Miró. The community was renamed in 1819 after the James Monroe, the first steamship to come up the Ouachita. The Univ. of Louisiana at Monroe and the Masur Museum of Art are in the city. Antebellum houses remain.
2 City (1990 pop. 22,902), seat of Monroe co., SE Mich., on Lake Erie; settled 1778, inc. 1837. Paper products, heating equipment, plastic tubing, flour, and auto parts are produced. The city has large nurseries and is the shipping point for a farm region. Monroe was the scene of the River Raisin massacre during the War of 1812 and the center of the "Toledo War" (see Toledo, Ohio). George A. Custer lived there, and the local museum has a large collection of Custer memorabilia.
3 City (1990 pop. 16,127), seat of Union co., S N.C., in the Piedmont; settled 1751, inc. 1844. It has diverse agriculture, and poultry is processed. Industries include metal fabrication and casting and the manufacture of textiles and apparel, plastic and stone products, pharmaceuticals, industrial machinery, lighting fixtures, and aviation and electronic equipment. Wingate Univ. is in nearby Wingate.