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Knox County, Indiana
Map of Indiana highlighting Knox County
Location in the state of Indiana
Map of the U.S. highlighting Indiana
Indiana's location in the U.S.
Founded June 6, 1790
Seat Vincennes
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

524.06 sq mi (1,357 km²)
515.83 sq mi (1,336 km²)
8.22 sq mi (21 km²),
 - (2010)
 - Density

75/sq mi (29/km²)
Congressional district 8th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Indiana county number 42

  • Oldest county in Indiana and Indiana Territory
  • Eighth largest county in Indiana by area

Knox County is a county located in Indiana in the United States. It was one of two original counties created in the old Northwest Territory in 1790 and was reduced to its present size in 1817. As of 2010, the population was 38,440. The county seat is Vincennes[1]; other communities include the city of Bicknell and the towns Oaktown, Wheatland, Freelandville, and Monroe City.


In 1790, Winthrop Sargent, Secretary of Northwest Territory, organized the first Indiana county, Knox County. It was named for Major General Henry Knox, U.S. Secretary of War.

Knox County was one of the original counties of the Northwest Territory and was created prior to the formation of the Indiana Territory. When it was created, Knox County extended to Canada and encompassed all or part of the present states of Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio. When the Illinois Territory was formed in 1809, the portions of Knox County beyond the Wabash River became a part of Illinois.

Many of Knox Country townships and lots were surveyed with the French system, which goes towards non-cardinal compass points. Knox and Clark counties are the only ones laid out in this fashion.[2]


According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 524.06 square miles (1,357.3 km2), of which 515.83 square miles (1,336.0 km2) (or 98.43%) is land and 8.22 square miles (21.3 km2) (or 1.57%) is water.[3]

Major highways[]

  • US 41
  • US 50
  • US 150
  • SR 58
  • SR 59
  • SR 61
  • SR 67
  • SR 159
  • SR 241
  • SR 441

Adjacent Counties[]

National protected area[]

  • George Rogers Clark National Historical Park

Cities and towns[]

  • Bicknell
  • Bruceville
  • Decker
  • Edwardsport
  • Freelandville
  • Monroe City
  • Oaktown
  • Sandborn
  • Vincennes
  • Westphalia
  • Wheatland


  • Busseron
  • Decker
  • Harrison
  • Johnson
  • Palmyra
  • Steen
  • Vigo
  • Vincennes
  • Washington
  • Widner

Climate and weather[]

Climate chart for Vincennes, Indiana
temperatures in °Cprecipitation totals in mm
source: The Weather Channel[4]

In recent years, average temperatures in Vincennes have ranged from a low of 18 °F (−8 °C) in January to a high of 88 °F (31 °C) in July, although a record low of −26 °F (−32.2 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 104 °F (40 °C) was recorded in June 1988. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 2.51 inches (64 mm) in February to 5.13 inches (130 mm) in May.[4]


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.[5][6]

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.[5][6]

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.[6]

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.[6]

Knox County is part of Indiana's 8th congressional district; Indiana Senate districts 39 and 48;[7] and Indiana House of Representatives districts 45 and 64.[8]


Knox County
Population by year

2010 38,440
2000 39,256
1990 39,884
1980 41,838
1970 41,546
1960 41,561
1950 43,415
1940 43,973
1930 43,813
1920 46,195
1910 39,183
1900 32,746
1890 28,044
1880 26,324
1870 21,562
1860 16,056
1850 11,084
1840 10,657
1830 6,525
1820 5,437
1810 7,945
1800 2,517

As of the census[9] of 2000, there were 39,256 people, 15,552 households, and 10,139 families residing in the county. The population density was 76 people per square mile (29/km²). There were 17,305 housing units at an average density of 34 per square mile (13/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 96.37% White, 1.85% Black or African American, 0.21% Native American, 0.52% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.31% from other races, and 0.69% from two or more races. 0.82% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 28.5% were of American, 26.3% German, 10.1% English and 8.2% Irish ancestry according to Census 2000.

By 2005 the Latino population of Knox County had risen to 1.0%. African-Americans were 2.1% of the population.

In 2000 there were 15,552 households out of which 30.00% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.60% were married couples living together, 10.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.80% were non-families. 29.70% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.36 and the average family size was 2.93.

In the county the population was spread out with 22.90% under the age of 18, 13.60% from 18 to 24, 25.40% from 25 to 44, 22.70% from 45 to 64, and 15.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 98.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.60 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $31,362, and the median income for a family was $41,273. Males had a median income of $30,536 versus $20,916 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,085. About 11.60% of families and 16.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.70% of those under age 18 and 12.40% of those age 65 or over.

Knox County Indiana employers give high marks to their workforce when it comes to measuring productivity levels. The annual employee turnover rate is less than 5 percent, and absenteeism rates range from 0-3 percent per month.


In 2005, Knox County had 998 business units and 16,240 jobs. The largest employing industry in the county was education and health services (including both public and private employment) with almost 34 percent of total industry employment. Trade, transportation, and utilities came in second with over 22 percent of total industry employment. Manufacturing showed the most job growth and the largest percentage gain since 2001, increasing 316 jobs or almost 21 percent.

The 2005 all industry earnings average for Knox County was $26,875, up $2,824 or 11.7 percent over the county’s 2001 average. The manufacturing industry had the highest average annual earnings at $33,238, increasing $1,695 since 2001. Annual earnings in the information sector increased the most between 2001 and 2005, up $6,518 or 29.7 percent.

The Vincennes area has a diversified economy. In 2005 retail trade was the largest of 20 major sectors. It had an average wage per job of $19,743. Per capita income grew by 17.9% between 1994 and 2004 (adjusted for inflation). While manufacturing accounts for 8.2% of the jobs, the services sector is rapidly growing. Knox County's ground breaking Pathways Program insures a well-trained, highly motivated labor force. Knox County emcompasses an area that attracts approximately 300,000 potential employees within an easy commute. Because of the proximity of the surrounding counties, and ease of access to the Vincennes area, businesses routinely draw from a labor force that lies within a 50-mile radius of their work site.

See also[]

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


  1. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  2. ^ Taylor, Jr., Robert M. (1989). Indiana: A New Historical Guide. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society. ISBN 0-87195-048-0. 
  3. ^ "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-02-06. 
  4. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Vincennes, Indiana". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 
  5. ^ a b Indiana Code. "Title 36, Article 2, Section 3". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  6. ^ a b c d Indiana Code. "Title 2, Article 10, Section 2". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  7. ^ "Indiana Senate Districts". State of Indiana. Retrieved 2011-07-14. 
  8. ^ "Indiana House Districts". State of Indiana. Retrieved 2011-07-14. 
  9. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  • Forstall, Richard L. (editor) (1996). Population of states and counties of the United States: 1790 to 1990 : from the twenty-one decennial censuses. United States Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Population Division. ISBN 0-934213-48-8. 

Coordinates: 38°41′N 87°25′W / 38.69, -87.42

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Knox 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.