Gilliam County, Oregon facts for kids

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Gilliam County, Oregon
Map

Location in the state of Oregon
Map of the USA highlighting Oregon
Oregon's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded February 25, 1885
Seat Condon
Largest City Condon
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

1,223 sq mi (3,168 km²)
1,205 sq mi (3,121 km²)
18 sq mi (47 km²), 1.5%
PopulationEst.
 - (2015)
 - Density

1,859
1.6/sq mi (1/km²)
Website: www.co.gilliam.or.us

Gilliam County is a county located in the U.S. state of Oregon. As of the 2010 census, the population was 1,871, making it the third-least populous county in Oregon. The county seat is Condon. The county was established in 1885 and is named for Cornelius Gilliam, who commanded the forces of the provisional government of Oregon after the Whitman Massacre.

History

Gwendolen Grain Elevator (Gilliam County, Oregon scenic images) (gilDA0177)
Old grain elevator in Gwendolen, in Gilliam County.

The Oregon Legislative Assembly created Gilliam County on February 25, 1885, from the eastern third of Wasco County after residents complained that they were too far from their county seat in The Dalles. The first Gilliam county seat was at Alkali, now Arlington. The question of a permanent county seat was placed on general election ballots in 1886, 1888, and again in 1890, when voters chose to move the county seat to Condon, known to early settlers as "Summit Springs." Once the question of the location of the county seat was settled, voters in Gilliam County proved reluctant to provide a courthouse in Condon. The county government operated out of a two-room house until 1903, when the county court appropriated money to construct a courthouse. This courthouse burned down in 1954 and was replaced the following year with the current courthouse.

Thereafter, apparently nothing much happened until the Shepherds Flat Wind Farm, an 845 megawatt (MW) wind farm, began construction in Eastern Oregon, in both Gilliam and Morrow counties, near Arlington. Approved in 2008 by state regulators, groundbreaking came in 2009. The wind farm was being built by Caithness Energy using General Electric (GE) 2.5 MW wind turbines, and it will supply electricity to Southern California Edison. In April, 2011, Google announced they had invested $100 million in the project. The wind farm was estimated to have an economic impact of $16 million annually for Oregon.

Geography

Gilliam County sunrise
Sunrise in Gilliam County

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,223 square miles (3,170 km2), of which 1,205 square miles (3,120 km2) is land and 18 square miles (47 km2) (1.5%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 3,600
1900 3,201 −11.1%
1910 3,701 15.6%
1920 3,960 7.0%
1930 3,467 −12.4%
1940 2,844 −18.0%
1950 2,817 −0.9%
1960 3,069 8.9%
1970 2,342 −23.7%
1980 2,057 −12.2%
1990 1,717 −16.5%
2000 1,915 11.5%
2010 1,871 −2.3%
Est. 2015 1,859 −0.6%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2015

2000 census

As of the census of 2000, there were 1,915 people, 819 households, and 543 families residing in the county. The population density was 2 people per square mile (1/km²). There were 1,043 housing units at an average density of 1 per square mile (0/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 96.76% White, 0.16% Black or African American, 0.84% Native American, 0.16% Asian, 1.15% from other races, and 0.94% from two or more races. 1.83% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 18.2% were of German, 18.1% American, 12.6% English, 12.5% Irish and 5.3% Scottish ancestry.

There were 819 households out of which 27.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.90% were married couples living together, 5.90% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.60% were non-families. 29.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.85.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.20% under the age of 18, 5.40% from 18 to 24, 25.60% from 25 to 44, 26.70% from 45 to 64, and 19.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 102.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.30 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $33,611, and the median income for a family was $41,477. Males had a median income of $30,915 versus $20,852 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,659. About 6.70% of families and 9.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.00% of those under age 18 and 6.60% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 1,871 people, 864 households, and 508 families residing in the county. The population density was 1.6 inhabitants per square mile (0.62/km2). There were 1,156 housing units at an average density of 1.0 per square mile (0.39/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 95.2% white, 1.0% American Indian, 0.7% Pacific islander, 0.2% Asian, 0.2% black or African American, 1.4% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 4.7% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 28.4% were German, 18.5% were English, 15.5% were Irish, and 8.3% were American.

Of the 864 households, 22.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.4% were married couples living together, 6.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 41.2% were non-families, and 35.6% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.14 and the average family size was 2.74. The median age was 49.7 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,148 and the median income for a family was $52,885. Males had a median income of $34,340 versus $35,962 for females. The per capita income for the county was $25,559. About 9.8% of families and 10.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.3% of those under age 18 and 10.8% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

Cities

Unincorporated communities

Images for kids


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