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Benson County, North Dakota facts for kids

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Benson County
Benson County Courthouse
Map of North Dakota highlighting Benson County
Location within the U.S. state of North Dakota
Map of the United States highlighting North Dakota
North Dakota's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  North Dakota
Founded March 9, 1883 (created)
June 4, 1884 (organized)
Named for Bertil W. Benson
Seat Minnewaukan
Largest community Fort Totten
Area
 • Total 1,439 sq mi (3,730 km2)
 • Land 1,389 sq mi (3,600 km2)
 • Water 51 sq mi (130 km2)  3.5%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 5,964
 • Density 4.1445/sq mi (1.6002/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district At-large

Benson County is a county in the U.S. state of North Dakota. As of the 2020 United States Census, the population was 5,964. Its county seat is Minnewaukan. The county was created on March 9, 1883 by the Dakota Territory legislature, and was named for Bertil W. Benson, a Dakota Territory legislator at the time. The county government was organized on June 4, 1884, and its boundary lines were altered by two legislative actions in 1885.

White Horse Hill National Game Preserve and much of the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation are located within the county.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,439 square miles (3,730 km2), of which 1,389 square miles (3,600 km2) is land and 51 square miles (130 km2) (3.5%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

  • US 2.svg U.S. Highway 2
  • US 281.svg U.S. Highway 281
  • North Dakota 19.svg North Dakota Highway 19
  • North Dakota 20.svg North Dakota Highway 20
  • North Dakota 57.png North Dakota Highway 57

National protected areas

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 2,460
1900 8,320 238.2%
1910 12,681 52.4%
1920 13,095 3.3%
1930 13,327 1.8%
1940 12,629 −5.2%
1950 10,675 −15.5%
1960 9,435 −11.6%
1970 8,245 −12.6%
1980 7,944 −3.7%
1990 7,198 −9.4%
2000 6,964 −3.3%
2010 6,660 −4.4%
2020 5,964 −10.5%
US Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2020

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 6,660 people, 2,233 households, and 1,628 families in the county. The population density was 4.8 inhabitants per square mile (1.9/km2). There were 2,950 housing units at an average density of 2.1 per square mile (0.81/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 55.0% American Indian, 43.4% white, 0.2% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.2% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 22.0% were Norwegian, 18.0% were German, 5.0% were Irish, and 0.6% were American.

Of the 2,233 households, 41.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.3% were married couples living together, 20.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 27.1% were non-families, and 23.2% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.98 and the average family size was 3.46. The median age was 31.6 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $30,479 and the median income for a family was $34,597. Males had a median income of $31,729 versus $25,253 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,545. About 26.1% of families and 35.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 48.3% of those under age 18 and 16.9% of those age 65 or over.

Population by decade

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Communities

Cities

Townships

  • Albert
  • Arne
  • Aurora
  • Beaver
  • Broe
  • Butte Valley
  • East Fork
  • Eldon
  • Esmond
  • Hesper
  • Impark
  • Iowa
  • Irvine
  • Isabel
  • Knox
  • Lake Ibsen
  • Lallie
  • Leeds
  • Lohnes
  • McClellan
  • Minco
  • Mission
  • Normania
  • North Viking
  • Oberon
  • Pleasant Lake
  • Rich Valley
  • Riggin
  • Rock
  • South Viking
  • Twin Lake
  • Twin Tree
  • Warwick
  • West Antelope
  • West Bay
  • Wood Lake
  • York

Census-designated place

Other communities

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