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Allamakee County, Iowa facts for kids

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Allamakee County
Allamakee County Court House
Map of Iowa highlighting Allamakee County
Location within the U.S. state of Iowa
Map of the United States highlighting Iowa
Iowa's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Iowa
Founded 1847
Seat Waukon
Largest city Waukon
 • Total 659 sq mi (1,710 km2)
 • Land 639 sq mi (1,660 km2)
 • Water 20 sq mi (50 km2)  3.0%%
 • Total 14,330
 • Density 22/sq mi (8/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 1st

Allamakee County (pronounced AL-uh-muh-KEY) is the northeastern-most county in the U.S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 14,330. Its county seat is Waukon.


Allamakee County was formed on February 20, 1847. The derivation of the name is debated, some believing it was the name of an Indian chief, others think it was named for Allen Magee, an early historic trader. The first Allamakee County Courthouse in Waukon, built in 1861, now serves as the Allamakee County Historical Museum. The present Allamakee County Court House was built in 1940. Both courthouse buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 659 square miles (1,710 km2), of which 639 square miles (1,660 km2) is land and 20 square miles (52 km2) (3.0%) is water.

Native vegetation based on NRCS soils information
Private land Alamakee Co Wiki Version
Soils of private land in Allamakee County Iowa

In the northern part of the county is the Upper Iowa River. In the southern part is the Yellow River. The eastern boundary is the Mississippi River. All offer scenic and recreational opportunities, particularly in Yellow River State Forest.

French Creek flows north of Waukon, outside the city limits. Paint Creek, named after Paint Rock Bluff, flows out of the south of Waukon. Norfolk creek originates in the western outskirts of Waukon and is effluent to the Yellow River. Clear Creek flows into Lansing. Village Creek flows through essentially rural terrain. All are tributary to the Mississippi River.

The landforms encountered in the county are very unlike those found in most of Iowa, which is mostly absent Glacial Drift. As part of the Driftless Area, the county was ice free during the last ice age, and as one progresses to the Mississippi River, the streams and rivers display high-walled canyons carved of Silurian period bedrock. This Driftless Area also includes parts of Clayton, Fayette, Winneshiek, Howard, Dubuque, and Jackson Counties.

Major highways

  • US 18 (IA).svg U.S. Highway 18
  • US 52 (IA).svg U.S. Highway 52
  • Iowa 9.svg Iowa Highway 9
  • Iowa 26.svg Iowa Highway 26
  • Iowa 51.svg Iowa Highway 51
  • Iowa 76.svg Iowa Highway 76

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 777
1860 12,237 1,474.9%
1870 17,868 46.0%
1880 19,791 10.8%
1890 17,907 −9.5%
1900 18,711 4.5%
1910 17,328 −7.4%
1920 17,285 −0.2%
1930 16,328 −5.5%
1940 17,184 5.2%
1950 16,351 −4.8%
1960 15,982 −2.3%
1970 14,968 −6.3%
1980 15,108 0.9%
1990 13,855 −8.3%
2000 14,675 5.9%
2010 14,330 −2.4%
Est. 2015 13,886 −3.1%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

2010 census

The 2010 census recorded a population of 14,330 in the county, with a population density of 22.39/sq mi (8.64/km2). There were 7,617 housing units, of which 5,845 were occupied.

2000 census

USA Allamakee County, Iowa age pyramid
2000 Census Age Pyramid for Allamakee County

As of the census of 2000, there were 14,675 people, 5,722 households, and 3,931 families residing in the county. The population density was 23 people per square mile (9/km²). There were 7,142 housing units at an average density of 11 per square mile (4/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 95.88% White, 0.14% Black or African American, 0.18% Native American, 0.27% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 2.82% from other races, and 0.70% from two or more races. 3.54% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 5,722 households out of which 30.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.40% were married couples living together, 6.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.30% were non-families. 27.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 3.02.

In the county, the population was spread out with 25.40% under the age of 18, 7.00% from 18 to 24, 25.60% from 25 to 44, 23.60% from 45 to 64, and 18.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 100.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $33,967, and the median income for a family was $40,589. Males had a median income of $26,122 versus $19,098 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,599. About 6.40% of families and 9.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.80% of those under age 18 and 8.10% of those age 65 or over.

Notable sites

View of the Mississippi from Effigy Mounds National Monument




Allamakee County is divided into eighteen townships:

  • Center
  • Fairview
  • Franklin
  • French Creek
  • Hanover
  • Iowa
  • Jefferson
  • Lafayette
  • Lansing
  • Linton
  • Ludlow
  • Makee
  • Paint Creek
  • Post
  • Taylor
  • Union City
  • Union Prairie
  • Waterloo

Unincorporated communities

Ghost towns

Population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Allamakee County.

county seat

Rank City/Town/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)
1 Waukon City 3,897
2 Postville (mostly in Clayton County) City 2,227
3 Lansing City 999
4 New Albin City 522
5 Harpers Ferry City 328
6 Waterville City 144
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