Jefferson County, Washington facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Jefferson County, Washington
Map
Map of Washington highlighting Jefferson County
Location in the state of Washington
Map of the USA highlighting Washington
Washington's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded December 22, 1852
Seat Port Townsend
Largest City Port Townsend
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

2,183 sq mi (5,654 km²)
1,804 sq mi (4,672 km²)
379 sq mi (982 km²), 17%
PopulationEst.
 - (2015)
 - Density

30,466
17/sq mi (7/km²)
Time zone Pacific: UTC-8/-7
Website: www.co.jefferson.wa.us
Named for: Thomas Jefferson

Jefferson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Washington. As of the 2010 census, the population was 29,872. The county seat and only incorporated city is Port Townsend. The county is named for Thomas Jefferson.

Jefferson County was formed out of Thurston County on December 22, 1852, by the legislature of Oregon Territory, and included the northern 4,854 square miles (12,571.8 km2) portion of the Olympic Peninsula. On April 26, 1854, the legislature of Washington Territory created Clallam County from the northwestern 2,670 square miles (6,915.3 km2) portion of this original area.

The Hood Canal Bridge connects Jefferson County to Kitsap County, Washington. The Coupeville-Port Townsend route of the Washington State Ferries connects the county to Whidbey Island in Island County, Washington.

Geography

Cedar Creek Abbey Island Ruby Beach
Ruby Beach, Kalaloch Area

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 2,183 square miles (5,650 km2), of which 1,804 square miles (4,670 km2) is land and 379 square miles (980 km2) (17%) is water.

The county is split in three parts by its landforms:

  • Eastern Jefferson County along the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Admiralty Inlet, and Puget Sound
  • Central Jefferson County, which is uninhabited and lies in the Olympic Mountains within Olympic National Park and Olympic National Forest
  • Western Jefferson County, along the Pacific Ocean.

Because of the mountainous barrier, there is no road lying entirely within Jefferson County that connects the eastern and western parts. The most direct land route between the two ends of the county involves a drive of approximately 100 miles (160 km) along U.S. Route 101 through neighbouring Clallam County. The mountains also block the damp Chinook winds, which make the climate much wetter in the west than the so-called eastern "banana belt" in the rain shadow.

Geographic features

Hoh river in spring
Hoh River in the Olympic National Park

Major highways

  • US 101 (1961).svg U.S. Route 101
  • WA-20.svg State Route 20
  • WA-104.svg State Route 104

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

  • Olympic National Forest (part)
  • Olympic National Park (part)
  • Protection Island National Wildlife Refuge
  • Quillayute Needles National Wildlife Refuge (part)
  • Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail (part)

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1860 531
1870 1,268 138.8%
1880 1,712 35.0%
1890 8,368 388.8%
1900 5,712 −31.7%
1910 8,337 46.0%
1920 6,557 −21.4%
1930 8,346 27.3%
1940 8,918 6.9%
1950 11,618 30.3%
1960 9,639 −17.0%
1970 10,661 10.6%
1980 15,965 49.8%
1990 20,146 26.2%
2000 25,953 28.8%
2010 29,872 15.1%
Est. 2015 30,466 2.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790–1960 1900–1990
1990–2000 2010–2015

2000 census

As of the census of 2000, there were 25,953 people, 11,645 households, and 7,580 families residing in the county. The population density was 14 people per square mile (6/km²). There were 14,144 housing units at an average density of 8 per square mile (3/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 92.17% White, 0.42% Black or African American, 2.31% Native American, 1.19% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 0.76% from other races, and 3.02% from two or more races. 2.06% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 17.4% were of German, 14.8% English, 9.9% Irish and 7.5% Norwegian ancestry. 97.1% spoke English and 1.0% Spanish as their first language.

There were 11,645 households out of which 23.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.60% were married couples living together, 8.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.90% were non-families. 28.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.21 and the average family size was 2.67.

In the county, the population was spread out with 19.80% under the age of 18, 5.00% from 18 to 24, 21.60% from 25 to 44, 32.50% from 45 to 64, and 21.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 47 years. For every 100 females there were 95.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.40 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $37,869, and the median income for a family was $45,415. Males had a median income of $37,210 versus $25,831 for females. The per capita income for the county was $22,211. About 7.20% of families and 11.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.60% of those under age 18 and 6.00% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 29,872 people, 14,049 households, and 8,394 families residing in the county. The population density was 16.6 inhabitants per square mile (6.4/km2). There were 17,767 housing units at an average density of 9.9 per square mile (3.8/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 91.0% white, 2.3% American Indian, 1.6% Asian, 0.8% black or African American, 0.2% Pacific islander, 0.7% from other races, and 3.4% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 2.8% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 20.8% were English, 20.3% were German, 13.9% were Irish, 8.3% were Norwegian, 5.9% were Scottish, and 4.2% were American.

Of the 14,049 households, 18.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.1% were married couples living together, 7.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 40.3% were non-families, and 32.2% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.08 and the average family size was 2.57. The median age was 53.9 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $46,048 and the median income for a family was $59,964. Males had a median income of $45,616 versus $29,508 for females. The per capita income for the county was $28,528. About 8.9% of families and 13.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.8% of those under age 18 and 7.4% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

Port Townsend and Admiralty Inlet
Port Townsend and Admiralty Inlet

City

Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities

Images for kids


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