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Cole County, Missouri facts for kids

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Cole County
The Cole County Courthouse in Jefferson City
The Cole County Courthouse in Jefferson City
Map of Missouri highlighting Cole County
Location within the U.S. state of Missouri
Map of the United States highlighting Missouri
Missouri's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Missouri
Founded 1820
Named for Stephen Cole
Seat Jefferson City
Largest city Jefferson City
Area
 • Total 402 sq mi (1,040 km2)
 • Land 394 sq mi (1,020 km2)
 • Water 8.2 sq mi (21 km2)  2.0%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 77,279
 • Estimate 
(2018)
76,796
 • Density 192.24/sq mi (74.22/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 3rd

Cole County is located in the central part of the U.S. state of Missouri. As of the 2020 census, its population was 77,279. Its county seat and largest city is Jefferson City, the state capital. The county was organized November 16, 1820 and named after pioneer Captain Stephen Cole, an Indian fighter and pioneer settler, who built Cole's Fort in Boonville.

Cole County is in the Jefferson City, MO Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is south of the Missouri River.

In 2010, the center of the population of Missouri was in Cole County, near the village of Wardsville.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 402 square miles (1,040 km2), of which 394 square miles (1,020 km2) is land and 8.2 square miles (21 km2) (2.0%) is water. It is the third-smallest county in Missouri by area.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

  • US 50.svg U.S. Route 50
  • US 54.svg U.S. Route 54
  • US 63.svg U.S. Route 63
  • MO-17.svg Route 17
  • MO-179.svg Route 179

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1830 3,023
1840 9,286 207.2%
1850 6,696 −27.9%
1860 9,697 44.8%
1870 10,292 6.1%
1880 15,515 50.7%
1890 17,281 11.4%
1900 20,578 19.1%
1910 21,957 6.7%
1920 24,680 12.4%
1930 30,848 25.0%
1940 34,912 13.2%
1950 35,464 1.6%
1960 40,761 14.9%
1970 46,228 13.4%
1980 56,663 22.6%
1990 63,579 12.2%
2000 71,397 12.3%
2010 75,990 6.4%
2020 77,279 1.7%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2015

As of the census of 2000, there were 71,397 people, 27,040 households, and 17,927 families residing in the county. The population density was 182 people per square mile (70/km2). There were 28,915 housing units at an average density of 74 per square mile (29/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 87.06% White, 9.92% Black or African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.88% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.54% from other races, and 1.23% from two or more races. Approximately 1.28% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 40.1% were of German, 13.6% American, 7.8% English and 6.9% Irish ancestry.

There were 27,040 households, out of which 33.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.00% were married couples living together, 10.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.70% were non-families. 28.70% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 3.00.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 24.20% under the age of 18, 9.80% from 18 to 24, 32.30% from 25 to 44, 22.40% from 45 to 64, and 11.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females, there were 105.60 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 106.50 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,924, and the median income for a family was $53,416. Males had a median income of $33,769 versus $25,189 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,739. About 5.80% of families and 8.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.50% of those under age 18 and 7.30% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

City

Towns

Villages

Unincorporated communities

Education

Public schools

  • Blair Oaks R-II School District – Jefferson City
    • Blair Oaks Elementary School (K-04)
    • Blair Oaks Middle School (05-08)
    • Blair Oaks High School (09-12)
  • Cole County R-I School District – Russellville
    • Cole County R-I Elementary School (PK-05)
    • Cole County R-I Middle School (06-08)
    • Russellville High School (09-12)
  • Cole County R-V School District – Eugene
    • Eugene Elementary School (PK-06)
    • Eugene High School (07-12)
  • Jefferson City Public School District – Jefferson City
    • Southwest Early Childhood Education Center (PK)
    • Southwest Elementary School (K-05)
    • Callaway Hills Elementary School (K-05) – Holts Summit
    • South Elementary School (K-05)
    • Thorpe J. Gordon Elementary School (K-05)
    • East Elementary School (K-05)
    • North Elementary School (K-05) – Holts Summit
    • Cedar Hill Elementary School (K-05)
    • West Elementary School (K-05)
    • Moreau Heights Elementary School (K-05)
    • Belair Elementary School (K-05)
    • Pioneer Trail Elementary School (K-05)
    • Clarence Lawson Elementary School (PK-05)
    • Thomas Jefferson Middle School (06-08)
    • Lewis & Clark Middle School (06-08)
    • Jefferson City High School (09-12)
    • Capital City High School (09-12)

Private schools

Post-secondary education

  • Lincoln University – Jefferson City – A public, four-year historically black university.

Public libraries

  • Missouri River Regional Library
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