Blaine County, Idaho facts for kids
Quick facts for kids
Blaine County Courthouse
Location within the U.S. state of Idaho
Idaho's location within the U.S.
|Founded||March 5, 1895|
|Named for||James G. Blaine|
|• Total||2,661 sq mi (6,890 km2)|
|• Land||2,644 sq mi (6,850 km2)|
|• Water||17 sq mi (40 km2) 0.6%%|
|• Density||8.1/sq mi (3.1/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−7 (Mountain)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−6 (MDT)|
Blaine County was created by the state legislature on March 5, 1895, by combining Alturas and Logan counties. Its present boundaries were set on February 8, 1917, when a western portion became Camas County. The county is named after former congressman and 1884 Republican presidential nominee James G. Blaine (1830–93).
The Wood River Valley in present-day Blaine County was organized as part of Alturas County by the Idaho Territorial Legislature in 1864. By the 1880s the area became noted for its mining economy. In 1882 the county seat of Alturas County was moved from Rocky Bar in present-day Elmore County to Hailey, in response to a population shift from Rocky Bar – which would eventually become a ghost town – to the Wood River Valley.
After Idaho statehood in 1890, as in the rest of the state, mining gradually decreased in significance in Blaine County. At its creation in March 1895, Blaine County included five other present-day counties. Less than two weeks later, Lincoln County was carved from it and later partitioned into Gooding (1913), Minidoka (1913), and Jerome (1919) counties. Blaine County was further reduced in 1917 when Camas County was formed.
The county began to recast itself as a tourism destination in 1936 with the opening of the Sun Valley resort, originally owned by the Union Pacific Railroad. The area soon attracted celebrity visitors, and later residents, most notably Ernest Hemingway, who is buried in the Ketchum Cemetery. Celebrities who have lived either full-time or part-time in Blaine County include Adam West, Demi Moore, and John Kerry.
Most Blaine County residents live in the Wood River Valley along State Highway 75 in the western half of the county. This area includes all of the county's incorporated cities and towns except Carey, which is located in the south-central part of the county at the junction of US 20 with US 26/93. The county's gerrymandered southeastern panhandle, known locally as the Yale area, is very sparsely populated.
As the home of a major ski resort, Blaine County expectedly has a much higher cost of living than surrounding areas; the median value of its owner-occupied housing units is more than double the state average. As a result, many who work in Blaine County live in outlying areas, particularly in the city of Shoshone in neighboring Lincoln County. It is estimated that 2,540 people from outside the county commute to work in Blaine County.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 2,661 square miles (6,890 km2), of which 2,644 square miles (6,850 km2) is land and 17 square miles (44 km2) (0.6%) is water.
National protected areas
- Craters of the Moon National Monument (part)
- Minidoka National Wildlife Refuge (part)
- Salmon-Challis National Forest (part)
- Sawtooth National Forest (part)
- Sawtooth National Recreation Area (part)
- Hemingway–Boulders Wilderness (part)
- Sawtooth Wilderness (part)
|U.S. Decennial Census
As of the census of 2000, there were 18,991 people, 7,780 households, and 4,839 families residing in the county. The population density was 7 people per square mile (3/km²). There were 12,186 housing units at an average density of 5 per square mile (2/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 90.73% White, 0.13% Black or African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.73% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 6.43% from other races, and 1.57% from two or more races. 10.69% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 17.0% were of English, 14.6% German, 10.8% Irish and 6.2% American ancestry.
There were 7,780 households out of which 31.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.20% were married couples living together, 7.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.80% were non-families. 27.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.96.
In the county, the population was spread out with 24.00% under the age of 18, 7.70% from 18 to 24, 32.60% from 25 to 44, 27.90% from 45 to 64, and 7.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 107.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 106.80 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $50,496, and the median income for a family was $60,037. Males had a median income of $35,949 versus $27,487 for females. The per capita income for the county was $31,346. About 4.90% of families and 7.80% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.80% of those under age 18 and 5.30% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 21,376 people, 8,823 households, and 5,575 families residing in the county. The population density was 8.1 inhabitants per square mile (3.1/km2). There were 15,050 housing units at an average density of 5.7 per square mile (2.2/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 84.9% white, 0.9% Asian, 0.6% American Indian, 0.2% black or African American, 0.1% Pacific islander, 11.8% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 20.0% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 24.1% were German, 18.8% were English, 11.4% were Irish, and 7.9% were American.
Of the 8,823 households, 32.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.8% were married couples living together, 7.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 36.8% were non-families, and 28.7% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.39 and the average family size was 2.99. The median age was 40.4 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $61,854 and the median income for a family was $73,929. Males had a median income of $48,036 versus $37,603 for females. The per capita income for the county was $32,656. About 4.9% of families and 9.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.9% of those under age 18 and 8.2% of those age 65 or over.
- Boulder City
Blaine County is home to events and festivals throughout the year, including Wagon Days, Trailing of the Sheep Festival, Sun Valley Harvest Festival, and the Sun Valley for the Arts Wine Auction.
The Blaine County Fair is an annual summer event.
Blaine County, Idaho Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.