Harris County, Georgia facts for kids

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Harris County, Georgia
Map

Location in the state of Georgia
Map of the USA highlighting Georgia
Georgia's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded December 14, 1827
Seat Hamilton
Largest City West Point
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

473 sq mi (1,225 km²)
464 sq mi (1,202 km²)
9.1 sq mi (24 km²), 1.9%
Population
 - (2010)
 - Density

32,024
69/sq mi (27/km²)
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website: www.harriscountyga.gov

Harris County is a county located in the west central portion of the U.S. state of Georgia; its western border is formed by the Chattahoochee River. As of the 2010 census, the population was 32,024. The county seat is Hamilton. The county was created on December 14, 1827 and named for Charles Harris, a Georgia judge and attorney.

Harris County is part of the Columbus, GA-AL Metropolitan Statistical Area. In the antebellum era, it was considered part of the Black Belt in the southern United States, an upland area developed for cotton plantations in the nineteenth century before the American Civil War. Muscogee County, to the south, was more heavily developed for cotton.

History

The county was settled by European Americans largely after the federal government had forcibly removed the indigenous Creek people (Muscogee), who were relocated to Indian Territory west of the Mississippi River. In the antebellum era, parts of the county were developed for cotton plantations, the premier commodity crop. Planters imported numerous slaves from the Upper South through the domestic slave trade as workers.

The County courthouse was designed by Edward Columbus Hosford of Georgia and completed in 1906.

By the late 19th century, there had been numerous interracial relationships between whites and blacks both before and after the war; many residents were of mixed race, typically with European ancestry through the paternal line. There were 200 years of families with many inter-connections among them; justice was nearly always meted out to kin. Periodically some of the whites would try to reduce the relations of white men with mixed-race and black women, a movement that started in the late 19th century. The mountain areas of the county had moonshiners in the late 19th and early 20th centuries; both whites and blacks took part in this.

On January 22, 1912, a black woman and three black men were lynched in Hamilton, the county seat, allegedly for the murder of local white landowner Norman Hadley. He was described by journalist Karen Branan in her 2016 book about these events as a white “near penniless plowboy-playboy” and "notorious predator of black women."

Dusky Crutchfield was the first woman lynched in Georgia, and the lynching case attracted attention of national northern newspapers. Also murdered by the lynch mob were Eugene Harrington, Burrell Hardaway, and Johnie Moore. (Note: There was confusion about names of victims at the time, and variations have been published.)

The four had been taken in for questioning about Bradley's murder by Sheriff Marion Madison “Buddie” Hadley, but never arrested. Lynched as scapegoats by a white mob of 100 men, they were later shown to have been utterly innocent. As an example of the complex relationships in the town and county, Johnie Moore was a mixed-race cousin of the sheriff; Norman Hadley was the sheriff's nephew.

The county is now part of the Columbus, Georgia metropolitan area, which has become industrialized and developed a more varied economy. By per capita income, the county is the sixth-wealthiest in the state of Georgia, and the wealthiest county in the state outside of Metro Atlanta.

Geography

Harris county view 2
View of Harris County on Pine Mountain.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 473 square miles (1,230 km2), of which 464 square miles (1,200 km2) is land and 9.1 square miles (24 km2) (1.9%) is water.

The majority of Harris County is located in the Middle Chattahoochee River-Lake Harding sub-basin of the ACF River Basin (Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint River Basin), with the exception of the county's southeastern border area, south of Ellerslie, which is located in the Middle Chattahoochee River-Walter F. George Lake sub-basin of the same ACF River Basin.

Major highways

  • I-85.svg Interstate 85
  • I-185.svg Interstate 185
  • US 27.svg U.S. Route 27
  • Alternate plate.svg
    US 27.svg U.S. Route 27 Alternate
  • Georgia 1.svg State Route 1
  • Georgia 18.svg State Route 18
  • Georgia 36.svg State Route 36
  • Georgia 85.svg State Route 85
  • Georgia 85 Alternate.svg State Route 85 Alternate
  • Georgia 103.svg State Route 103
  • Georgia 116.svg State Route 116
  • Georgia 190.svg State Route 190
  • Georgia 208.svg State Route 208
  • Georgia 219.svg State Route 219
  • Georgia 315.svg State Route 315
  • Georgia 354.svg State Route 354
  • Georgia 403.svg State Route 403 (unsigned designation for I-85)
  • Georgia 411.svg State Route 411 (unsigned designation for I-185)

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1830 5,105
1840 13,933 172.9%
1850 14,721 5.7%
1860 13,736 −6.7%
1870 13,284 −3.3%
1880 15,758 18.6%
1890 16,797 6.6%
1900 18,009 7.2%
1910 17,886 −0.7%
1920 15,775 −11.8%
1930 11,140 −29.4%
1940 11,428 2.6%
1950 11,265 −1.4%
1960 11,167 −0.9%
1970 11,520 3.2%
1980 15,464 34.2%
1990 17,788 15.0%
2000 23,695 33.2%
2010 32,024 35.2%
Est. 2015 33,381 4.2%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 32,024 people, 11,823 households, and 9,268 families residing in the county. The population density was 69.0 inhabitants per square mile (26.6/km2). There were 13,397 housing units at an average density of 28.9 per square mile (11.2/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 79.3% white, 17.2% black or African American, 0.9% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 0.1% Pacific islander, 0.7% from other races, and 1.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 2.7% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 17.2% identified as having African ancestry (in US history this has often also meant distant European ancestry); 13.5% were German, 13.4% were Irish, 11.5% were English, and 10.5% identified as having American ancestry.

Of the 11,823 households, 35.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.0% were married couples living together, 10.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 21.6% were non-families, and 18.5% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.04. The median age was 42.0 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $67,018 and the median income for a family was $74,457. Males had a median income of $49,844 versus $37,103 for females. The per capita income for the county was $31,073. About 6.0% of families and 9.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.3% of those under age 18 and 10.5% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

Cities

Towns

Unincorporated communities


Harris County, Georgia Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.