Morton County, Kansas facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

Coordinates: 37°12′N 101°48′W / 37.2°N 101.8°W / 37.2; -101.8

Morton County, Kansas
Map
Map of Kansas highlighting Morton County
Location in the state of Kansas
Map of the USA highlighting Kansas
Kansas's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded February 20, 1886
Seat Elkhart
Largest City Elkhart
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

730 sq mi (1,891 km²)
730 sq mi (1,891 km²)
0.2 sq mi (1 km²), 0.03%
Population
 - (2010)
 - Density

3,233
4.4/sq mi (2/km²)
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Named for: Oliver Morton

Morton County (standard abbreviation: MT) is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 3,233. The largest city and county seat is Elkhart.

History

Early history

See also: History of Kansas

For many millennia, the Great Plains of North America was inhabited by nomadic Native Americans. From the 16th century to 18th century, the Kingdom of France claimed ownership of large parts of North America. In 1762, after the French and Indian War, France secretly ceded New France to Spain, per the Treaty of Fontainebleau.

19th century

In 1802, Spain returned most of the land to France, but keeping title to about 7,500 square miles. In 1803, most of the land for modern day Kansas was acquired by the United States from France as part of the 828,000 square mile Louisiana Purchase for 2.83 cents per acre.

In 1848, after the Mexican-American War, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo with Spain brought into the United States all or part of land for ten future states, including southwest Kansas.

From 1821 to late 1860s, the Santa Fe Trail was active across Morton County.

In 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized, then in 1861 Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. In 1886, Morton County was established, and named for Oliver Morton, who was a United States Senator from Indiana from 1867 to 1877. In 1886, the community of Richfield was established as the county seat.

20th century

Dust Storm in Rolla, Kansas, "05-06-35, Dear Mr. Roosevelt, Darkness came when it hit us. Picture taken from water... - NARA - 195691
Dust storm in Rolla on May 6, 1935

In the 1930s, the prosperity of the area was severely affected by its location within the Dust Bowl. This catastrophe intensified the economic impact of the Great Depression in the region.

In 1961, the county seat was moved from Richfield to Elkhart.

21st century

In 2007, the Federal Communications Commission moved Morton County into the Wichita, Kansas media market, along with the rest of western Kansas. Previously it was part of the Amarillo, Texas market.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 730 square miles (1,900 km2), of which 730 square miles (1,900 km2) is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) (0.03%) is water.

Major highways

  • K-27.svg Kansas Highway 27
  • K-51.svg Kansas Highway 51
  • US 56.svg U.S. Highway 56

Adjacent counties

National protected area

  • Cimarron National Grassland (part)

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 724
1900 304 −58.0%
1910 1,333 338.5%
1920 3,177 138.3%
1930 4,092 28.8%
1940 2,186 −46.6%
1950 2,610 19.4%
1960 3,354 28.5%
1970 3,576 6.6%
1980 3,454 −3.4%
1990 3,480 0.8%
2000 3,496 0.5%
2010 3,233 −7.5%
Est. 2015 3,007 −7.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013
USA Morton County, Kansas age pyramid
Age pyramid

As of the census of 2000, there were 3,496 people, 1,306 households, and 961 families residing in the county. The population density was 5 people per square mile (2/km²). There were 1,519 housing units at an average density of 2 per square mile (1/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 88.39% White, 0.20% Black or African American, 1.14% Native American, 1.06% Asian, 7.52% from other races, and 1.69% from two or more races. 14.10% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 1,306 households out of which 36.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.20% were married couples living together, 6.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.40% were non-families. 24.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.63 and the average family size was 3.15.

In the county, the population was spread out with 29.30% under the age of 18, 8.00% from 18 to 24, 27.20% from 25 to 44, 21.50% from 45 to 64, and 13.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 94.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $37,232, and the median income for a family was $43,494. Males had a median income of $31,875 versus $19,474 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,076. About 8.50% of families and 10.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.00% of those under age 18 and 5.20% of those age 65 or over.

Communities

Map of Morton Co, Ks, USA
2005 KDOT Map of Morton County (map legend)

Cities

Unincorporated community

Townships

Morton County is divided into six townships. None of the cities within the county are considered governmentally independent, and all figures for the townships include those of the cities. In the following table, the population center is the largest city (or cities) included in that township's population total, if it is of a significant size.

Sources: 2000 U.S. Gazetteer from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Township FIPS Population
center
Population Population
density
/km² (/sq mi)
Land area
km² (sq mi)
Water area
km² (sq mi)
Water % Geographic coordinates
Cimarron 13350 67 0 (1) 173 (67) 0 (0) 0% 37°4′11″N 101°46′45″W / 37.06972°N 101.77917°W / 37.06972; -101.77917
Jones 35650 17 0 (0) 140 (54) 0 (0) 0% 37°1′4″N 101°56′56″W / 37.01778°N 101.94889°W / 37.01778; -101.94889
Richfield 59225 218 0 (1) 649 (251) 0 (0) 0% 37°14′37″N 101°42′36″W / 37.24361°N 101.71°W / 37.24361; -101.71
Rolla 60925 Rolla 650 2 (5) 373 (144) 0 (0) 0% 37°6′46″N 101°37′42″W / 37.11278°N 101.62833°W / 37.11278; -101.62833
Taloga 69975 Elkhart 2,437 17 (44) 142 (55) 0 (0) 0% 37°0′22″N 101°53′42″W / 37.00611°N 101.895°W / 37.00611; -101.895
Westola 77225 107 0 (1) 412 (159) 0 (0) 0.01% 37°14′19″N 101°58′40″W / 37.23861°N 101.97778°W / 37.23861; -101.97778

Morton County, Kansas Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.