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Jefferson County, Indiana
Jefferson County Indiana Courthouse.jpg
Jefferson County Courthouse in Madison, Indiana
Map of Indiana highlighting Jefferson County
Location in the state of Indiana
Map of the U.S. highlighting Indiana
Indiana's location in the U.S.
Founded 1811
Named for Thomas Jefferson
Seat Madison
Largest city Madison
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

362.89 sq mi (940 km²)
360.63 sq mi (934 km²)
2.26 sq mi (6 km²), 0.62%
 - (2010)
 - Density

90/sq mi (34.65/km²)
Congressional district 6th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Footnotes: Indiana county number 39

Jefferson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Indiana. As of 2010, the population was 32,428.[1] The county seat is Madison.[2]


Jefferson County was formed in 1811. It was named for Thomas Jefferson, principal draftsman of the Northwest Ordinance and President of the United States from 1801 through 1809.[3][4]

Jefferson County was one of Indiana's first counties and many important early Hoosiers came from Madison, including William Hendricks. Throughout the early history of the state, Madison was one of the leading cities competing with Vincennes and later New Albany to be the largest city in the state. The county fell into economic decline after the American Civil War, as industry began to shift from southern Indiana to the northern part of the state.

On the evening of May 20, 2009 the county courthouse caught fire. The fire began in the steeple of the courthouse, which was under reconstruction for Madison's bicentenary. The roof of the dome had just been painted gold. Fire departments from across southern Indiana and northern Kentucky arrived to put out the fire which burned for several hours, destroyed much of the inside of the building and the county records. The fire forced the evacuation of the nearby county jail, and effectively shut down the downtown area of the city.[5] It was later determined the fire was accidentally started by workers who were welding on the metal roof dome.


According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 362.89 square miles (939.9 km2), of which 360.63 square miles (934.0 km2) (or 99.38%) is land and 2.26 square miles (5.9 km2) (or 0.62%) is water.[6]

Cities and towns[]

Unincorporated towns[]

  • Canaan
  • Kent
  • Deputy


  • Graham
  • Hanover
  • Lancaster
  • Madison
  • Milton
  • Monroe
  • Republican
  • Saluda
  • Shelby
  • Smyrna

Adjacent counties[]

Major highways[]

Sources: National Atlas,[7] U.S. Census Bureau[8]

  • US 421.svg U.S. Route 421
  • Indiana 3.svg Indiana State Road 3
  • Indiana 7.svg Indiana State Road 7
  • Indiana 56.svg Indiana State Road 56
  • Indiana 62.svg Indiana State Road 62
  • Indiana 250.svg Indiana State Road 250
  • Indiana 256.svg Indiana State Road 256
  • Indiana 356.svg Indiana State Road 356

National protected area[]

  • Big Oaks National Wildlife Refuge (part)

Climate and weather[]

Climate chart for Madison, Indiana
temperatures in °Cprecipitation totals in mm
source: The Weather Channel[9]

In recent years, average temperatures in Madison have ranged from a low of 23 °F (−5 °C) in January to a high of 87 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −18 °F (−27.8 °C) was recorded in December 1989 and a record high of 108 °F (42 °C) was recorded in July 1954. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 2.92 inches (74 mm) in September to 4.96 inches (126 mm) in May.[9]


The county government is a constitutional body, and is granted specific powers by the Constitution of Indiana, and by the Indiana Code.

County Council: The county council is the legislative branch of the county government and controls all the spending and revenue collection in the county. Representatives are elected from county districts. The council members serve four-year terms. They are responsible for setting salaries, the annual budget, and special spending. The council also has limited authority to impose local taxes, in the form of an income and property tax that is subject to state level approval, excise taxes, and service taxes.[10][11]

Board of Commissioners: The executive body of the county is made of a board of commissioners. The commissioners are elected county-wide, in staggered terms, and each serves a four-year term. One of the commissioners, typically the most senior, serves as president. The commissioners are charged with executing the acts legislated by the council, collecting revenue, and managing the day-to-day functions of the county government.[10][11]

Court: The county maintains a small claims court that can handle some civil cases. The judge on the court is elected to a term of four years and must be a member of the Indiana Bar Association. The judge is assisted by a constable who is also elected to a four-year term. In some cases, court decisions can be appealed to the state level circuit court.[11]

County Officials: The county has several other elected offices, including sheriff, coroner, auditor, treasurer, recorder, surveyor, and circuit court clerk Each of these elected officers serves a term of four years and oversees a different part of county government. Members elected to county government positions are required to declare party affiliations and to be residents of the county.[11]

Jefferson County is part of Indiana's 6th congressional district and is represented in Congress by Republican Luke Messer.[12] It is also part of Indiana Senate district 45 and is split between Indiana House of Representatives districts 66, 67 and 69.[13]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1820 8,038
1830 11,465 42.6%
1840 16,614 44.9%
1850 23,916 44.0%
1860 25,036 4.7%
1870 29,741 18.8%
1880 25,977 −12.7%
1890 24,507 −5.7%
1900 22,913 −6.5%
1910 20,483 −10.6%
1920 20,709 1.1%
1930 19,182 −7.4%
1940 19,912 3.8%
1950 21,613 8.5%
1960 24,061 11.3%
1970 27,006 12.2%
1980 30,419 12.6%
1990 29,797 −2.0%
2000 31,705 6.4%
2010 32,428 2.3%
Est. 2013 32,458 2.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[14]
1790-1960[15] 1900-1990[16]
1990-2000[17] 2010-2013[1]

As of the census[18] of 2000, there were 31,705 people, 12,148 households, and 8,430 families residing in the county. The population density was 88 people per square mile (34/km²). There were 13,386 housing units at an average density of 37 per square mile (14/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 96.19% White, 1.45% Black or African American, 0.24% Native American, 0.59% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 1.12% from two or more races. 1.05% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 26.0% were of German, 25.7% American, 11.7% English and 9.7% Irish ancestry according to Census 2000.

There were 12,148 households out of which 32.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.00% were married couples living together, 10.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.60% were non-families. 25.70% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 2.94.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.40% under the age of 18, 10.60% from 18 to 24, 28.50% from 25 to 44, 23.40% from 45 to 64, and 13.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 98.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.60 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $38,189, and the median income for a family was $45,712. Males had a median income of $31,618 versus $22,033 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,412. About 7.60% of families and 9.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.50% of those under age 18 and 8.40% of those age 65 or over.

See also[]

  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Jefferson County, Indiana


  1. ^ a b "Jefferson County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-09-25. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ De Witt Clinton Goodrich & Charles Richard Tuttle (1875). An Illustrated History of the State of Indiana. Indiana: R. S. Peale & co.. pp. 562. 
  4. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off.. pp. 168. 
  5. ^ "Topic Galleries". Chicago Tribune.,0,7027486.story. 
  6. ^ "Census 2010 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-10-10. 
  7. ^ National Atlas
  8. ^ U.S. Census Bureau TIGER shape files
  9. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Madison, Indiana". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 
  10. ^ a b Indiana Code. "Title 36, Article 2, Section 3". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  11. ^ a b c d Indiana Code. "Title 2, Article 10, Section 2". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  12. ^ "About Indiana's 6th District". House.Gov. Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  13. ^ "Election Results". State of Indiana. Retrieved 2015-02-11. 
  14. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  15. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  18. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

External links[]

Coordinates: 38°47′N 85°26′W / 38.79, -85.44

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Jefferson County, Indiana. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.