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Okanogan County, Washington
Okanogan County Courthouse 01.jpg
Okanogan County courthouse in Okanogan
Seal of Okanogan County, Washington
Seal
Map of Washington highlighting Okanogan County
Location in the state of Washington (state)
Map of the U.S. highlighting Washington
Washington's location in the U.S.
Founded February, 1888
Named for Okanagan people
Seat Okanogan
Largest city Omak
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

5,315 sq mi (13,766 km²)
5,268 sq mi (13,644 km²)
47 sq mi (122 km²), 0.9%
Population
 - (2020)
 - Density

42,104
7.8/sq mi (3/km²)
Congressional district 4th
Time zone Pacific: UTC-8/-7
Website okanogancounty.org

Okanogan County ( /ˌkəˈnɑːɡən/)[1] is a county located in the U.S. state of Washington along the Canada–US border. As of the 2020 census, the population was 42,104.[2] The county seat is Okanogan,[3] while the largest city is Omak. Its area is the largest in the state.[4]

About a fifth of the county's residents live in the Greater Omak Area. The county forms a portion of the Okanogan Country. The first county seat was Ruby, which has now been a ghost town for more than 100 years.

Okanogan County was formed out of Stevens County in February 1888.[5] The name derives from the Okanagan language place name ukʷnaqín.[6] The name Okanogan (Okanagan) also refers to a part of southern British Columbia.

History[]

Before Europeans arrived, the Okanogan County region was home to numerous indigenous peoples that would eventually become part of three Indian reservations referred to as the Northern Okanogans or Sinkaietk, Tokoratums, Kartars and Konkonelps. They spoke in seven types of Interior Salish languages related to the Puget Sound tribes. The Okanogans experienced a favorable climate, camping in the winter, hunting bears in the spring, catching fish in the summer and hunting deer in fall. The camps consisted of teepee-like longhouses built with hides and bark. Women gathered nuts and berries. A popular destination for this was the Kettle Falls, where the Columbia River dropped some 20 feet (6.1 m).

Due to its remoteness, the Okanogan County area was one of the last in Washington settled by Europeans. It was an early thoroughfare used by prospectors to gain access to other communities, such as British Columbia. By the 21st century, the region specialized in agriculture, forestry and tourism. Electric producer Grand Coulee Dam was constructed between 1933 and 1942, originally with two power plants, around the Okanogan and Grant counties at the former's southern border.[7]

In July 2014, the Carlton Complex wildfire burned over 250,000 acres (390 sq mi; 1,000 km2) in Okanogan County. It destroyed over 300 homes[8] including 100 in and around Pateros[9]

Geography[]

Landscape near Winthrop, Washington

According to the United States Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 5,315 square miles (13,770 km2), of which 5,268 square miles (13,640 km2) is land and 47 square miles (120 km2) (0.9%) is water.[10] It is the largest county in the state by area, and it is larger than three states in land area.[11]

Geographic features[]

  • Cascade Mountains
  • Columbia River
  • Okanogan River
  • North Gardner Mountain, the highest point in Okanogan County
  • Beaner Lake

Major highways[]

  • US 97.svg U.S. Route 97
  • WA-20.svg State Route 20
  • WA-153.svg State Route 153

Adjacent counties[]

National protected areas[]

  • Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail (part)
  • Nez Perce National Historical Park (part)
  • Okanogan–Wenatchee National Forest
  • Pasayten Wilderness

Demographics[]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1890 1,467
1900 4,689 219.6%
1910 12,887 174.8%
1920 17,094 32.6%
1930 18,519 8.3%
1940 24,546 32.5%
1950 29,131 18.7%
1960 25,520 −12.4%
1970 25,867 1.4%
1980 30,639 18.4%
1990 33,350 8.8%
2000 39,564 18.6%
2010 41,120 3.9%
Est. 2021 42,634 [12] 7.8%
U.S. Decennial Census[13]
1790–1960[14] 1900–1990[15]
1990–2000[16] 2010–2020[2]

2000 census[]

As of the census[17] of 2000, there were 39,564 people, 15,027 households, and 10,579 families living in the county. The population density was 8 people per square mile (3/km2). There were 19,085 housing units at an average density of 4 per square mile (1/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 75.32% White, 0.28% Black or African American, 11.47% Native American, 0.44% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 9.58% from other races, and 2.84% from two or more races. 14.38% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 14.0% were of German, 9.5% English, 9.2% United States or American and 6.8% Irish ancestry.

There were 15,027 households, out of which 33.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.40% were married couples living together, 11.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.60% were non-families. 24.50% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.58 and the average family size was 3.04.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 27.70% under the age of 18, 7.30% from 18 to 24, 25.50% from 25 to 44, 25.50% from 45 to 64, and 14.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 99.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $29,726, and the median income for a family was $35,012. Males had a median income of $29,495 versus $22,005 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,900. About 16.00% of families and 21.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 28.20% of those under age 18 and 10.40% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census[]

As of the 2010 census, there were 41,120 people, 16,519 households, and 10,914 families living in the county.[18] The population density was 7.8 inhabitants per square mile (3.0 /km2). There were 22,245 housing units at an average density of 4.2 per square mile (1.6 /km2).[19] The racial makeup of the county was 73.9% white, 11.4% American Indian, 0.6% Asian, 0.4% black or African American, 0.1% Pacific islander, 10.1% from other races, and 3.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 17.6% of the population.[18] In terms of ancestry, 21.4% were German, 12.4% were Irish, 12.2% were English, and 3.6% were American.[20]

Of the 16,519 households, 29.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.7% were married couples living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.9% were non-families, and 28.0% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.45 and the average family size was 2.96. The median age was 42.9 years.[18]

The median income for a household in the county was $38,551 and the median income for a family was $48,418. Males had a median income of $37,960 versus $29,032 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,093. About 14.7% of families and 19.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.3% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.[21]

Communities[]

Landscape near Okanogan, Washington

Cities[]

  • Brewster
  • Okanogan (county seat)
  • Omak
  • Oroville
  • Pateros
  • Tonasket

Towns[]

  • Conconully
  • Coulee Dam (partial)
  • Elmer City
  • Nespelem
  • Riverside
  • Twisp
  • Winthrop

Census-designated places[]

  • Disautel
  • Loomis
  • Malott
  • Methow
  • Nespelem Community
  • North Omak

Other unincorporated communities[]

  • Aeneas
  • Azwell
  • Carlton
  • Ellisford (aka Ellisforde)
  • Havillah
  • Mazama
  • Monse
  • Nighthawk
  • Rocky Butte
  • Synarep
  • Wauconda

Ghost towns[]

  • Bodie
  • Bolster
  • Chesaw
  • Molson
  • Ruby

Politics[]

United States presidential election results for Okanogan County, Washington[22]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 11,840 55.63% 8,900 41.82% 542 2.55%
2016 9,610 54.74% 6,298 35.87% 1,648 9.39%
2012 9,221 54.23% 7,108 41.80% 674 3.96%
2008 8,798 51.79% 7,613 44.82% 576 3.39%
2004 9,636 58.96% 6,309 38.61% 397 2.43%
2000 9,384 63.41% 4,335 29.29% 1,079 7.29%
1996 5,890 45.05% 4,810 36.79% 2,375 18.16%
1992 4,265 32.72% 5,015 38.48% 3,753 28.80%
1988 5,856 49.88% 5,630 47.96% 254 2.16%
1984 7,476 57.25% 5,330 40.81% 253 1.94%
1980 6,460 51.71% 4,634 37.09% 1,399 11.20%
1976 5,455 47.05% 5,543 47.81% 597 5.15%
1972 5,796 56.09% 3,835 37.11% 703 6.80%
1968 4,490 45.19% 4,379 44.08% 1,066 10.73%
1964 3,931 37.46% 6,554 62.45% 10 0.10%
1960 5,169 48.32% 5,507 51.48% 22 0.21%
1956 5,448 50.66% 5,298 49.27% 8 0.07%
1952 6,085 55.57% 4,817 43.99% 48 0.44%
1948 4,083 41.10% 5,644 56.81% 208 2.09%
1944 4,084 46.60% 4,642 52.97% 38 0.43%
1940 4,244 43.96% 5,362 55.54% 49 0.51%
1936 2,367 27.31% 5,622 64.87% 678 7.82%
1932 2,277 32.78% 3,969 57.13% 701 10.09%
1928 3,245 64.86% 1,722 34.42% 36 0.72%
1924 2,531 50.41% 721 14.36% 1,769 35.23%
1920 2,784 54.98% 1,260 24.88% 1,020 20.14%
1916 1,896 35.55% 2,924 54.82% 514 9.64%
1912 804 18.97% 1,461 34.47% 1,974 46.57%
1908 1,368 49.23% 1,074 38.65% 337 12.13%
1904 1,192 66.63% 435 24.32% 162 9.06%
1900 457 38.08% 714 59.50% 29 2.42%
1896 284 22.72% 950 76.00% 16 1.28%
1892 577 50.04% 425 36.86% 151 13.10%



See also[]

  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Okanogan County, Washington
  • Okanogan Conservation District

Further reading[]

References[]

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  1. ^ "Washington Placenames Pronunciation". 
  2. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/okanogancountywashington/PST045221. 
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. http://www.naco.org/Counties/Pages/FindACounty.aspx. 
  4. ^ Wilma, David (January 21, 2006). "Okanogan County — Thumbnail History". HistoryLink.org. http://www.historylink.org/essays/output.cfm?file_id=7608. 
  5. ^ "Washington State Archives – Central Regional Branch: Guide to Holdings: Okanogan County". http://www.cwu.edu/~archives/okn.htm#32400000. 
  6. ^ Bright, William (2004). Native American placenames of the United States. University of Oklahoma Press. p. 346. ISBN 978-0-8061-3598-4. https://books.google.com/books?id=5XfxzCm1qa4C&pg=PA346. 
  7. ^ "Thumbnail History". HistoryLink. http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?DisplayPage=output.cfm&file_id=7608. 
  8. ^ "Fire's updated toll: 300 homes, 'horrifying' devastation". Seattle Times. July 26, 2014. http://seattletimes.com/html/localnews/2024165302_firesaturdayxml.html. 
  9. ^ Geranios, Nicholas K.; Johnson, Gene (July 19, 2014). "Damage from Washington Wildfires 'Hard to Believe'". The Associated Press (Boston.com). http://www.boston.com/news/nation/2014/07/19/damage-from-washington-wildfires-hard-believe/rmGZgRSE8A58gpEsiy6TJJ/story.html. 
  10. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. http://www2.census.gov/geo/docs/maps-data/data/gazetteer/counties_list_53.txt. 
  11. ^ Rhode Island has 1,545 sq. mi, and Delaware has 2,489 sq. mi. Connecticut has 5,543 sq. mi. total, but only 4,842 sq. mi. of land area, and thus is considered smaller than Okanogan County in this regard.
  12. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Counties: April 1, 2020 to July 1, 2021". https://www.census.gov/data/tables/time-series/demo/popest/2020s-counties-total.html. 
  13. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/decennial-census.html. 
  14. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. http://mapserver.lib.virginia.edu. 
  15. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/population/cencounts/wa190090.txt. 
  16. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/population/www/cen2000/briefs/phc-t4/tables/tab02.pdf. 
  17. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov. 
  18. ^ a b c "DP-1 Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/DEC/10_DP/DPDP1/0500000US53047. 
  19. ^ "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 – County". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/DEC/10_SF1/GCTPH1.CY07/0500000US53047. 
  20. ^ "DP02 SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES – 2006–2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/10_5YR/DP02/0500000US53047. 
  21. ^ "DP03 SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS – 2006–2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/10_5YR/DP03/0500000US53047. 
  22. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS. 

Coordinates: 48°33′N 119°45′W / 48.55, -119.75


This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Okanogan County, Washington. 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.
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