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Northampton County, Pennsylvania facts for kids

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Northampton County
Historic image of Northampton County Courthouse
Historic image of Northampton County Courthouse
Official seal of Northampton County
Seal
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Northampton County
Location within the U.S. state of Pennsylvania
Map of the United States highlighting Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 610: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).
Country  United States
State  Pennsylvania
Founded March 11, 1752
Named for Northamptonshire
Seat Easton
Largest city Bethlehem
Area
 • Total 377 sq mi (980 km2)
 • Land 370 sq mi (1,000 km2)
 • Water 7.7 sq mi (20 km2)  2.0%%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 312,951
 • Density 830/sq mi (320/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 7th

Northampton County is a county in the northeastern section of the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of the 2020 census, the population was 312,951. Its county seat is Easton. The county was formed in 1752 from parts of Bucks County. Its namesake was Northamptonshire, England. The county seat of Easton was named for the country house Easton Neston in that shire.

Northampton County is part of the Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton, PA-NJ Metropolitan Statistical Area. It borders Carbon County and the Poconos to the north, Lehigh County to the west, Bucks County to the south, and the Delaware River, which divides Pennsylvania and New Jersey, to the east. It is part of the Lehigh Valley.

Northampton County also borders the Delaware Valley and is included in Philadelphia's Media Market.

The county is industrially oriented, producing cement, and other industrial products. It was a center of cement production, with the world's then-largest cement producer, Atlas Portland Cement Company, operating here for nearly 100 years, from 1895 until 1982. Bethlehem Steel, once one of the world's largest manufacturers of steel, was located in this county prior to its closing in 2003.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 377 square miles (980 km2), of which 370 square miles (960 km2) is land and 7.7 square miles (20 km2) (2.0%) is water.

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 24,220
1800 30,062 24.1%
1810 38,145 26.9%
1820 31,765 −16.7%
1830 39,482 24.3%
1840 40,996 3.8%
1850 40,235 −1.9%
1860 47,904 19.1%
1870 61,432 28.2%
1880 70,312 14.5%
1890 84,220 19.8%
1900 99,687 18.4%
1910 127,667 28.1%
1920 153,506 20.2%
1930 169,304 10.3%
1940 168,959 −0.2%
1950 185,243 9.6%
1960 201,412 8.7%
1970 214,368 6.4%
1980 225,418 5.2%
1990 247,105 9.6%
2000 267,066 8.1%
2010 297,735 11.5%
2020 312,951 5.1%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2019

As of the 2010 census, the county was 81.0% White Non-Hispanic, 5.0% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American or Alaskan Native, 2.4% Asian, 0.0% Native Hawaiian, 2.2% were two or more races, and 3.8% were some other race. 10.5% of the population were of Hispanic or Latino ancestry.

As of the census of 2000, there were 267,066 people, 101,541 households, and 71,078 families residing in the county. The population density was 714 people per square mile (276/km2). There were 106,710 housing units at an average density of 286 per square mile (110/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 91.23% White, 2.77% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 1.37% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 3.06% from other races, and 1.39% from two or more races. 6.69% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 24.0% were of German, 14.0% Italian, 8.8% Irish, 5.1% English and 5.1% American ancestry. 89.3% spoke English and 5.5% Spanish as their first language.

There were 101,541 households, out of which 31.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.40% were married couples living together, 9.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.00% were non-families. 24.70% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.02.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 23.30% under the age of 18, 9.20% from 18 to 24, 28.30% from 25 to 44, 23.40% from 45 to 64, and 15.70% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 94.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males.

Transportation

LVI-sat
Aerial photo of Lehigh Valley International Airport (IATA: ABEICAO: KABE), 2005

Air transportation

Air transport to and from Northampton County is available through Lehigh Valley International Airport (IATA: ABEICAO: KABE).

Bus transportation

Public bus service in Northampton County is available through the Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority, known as LANTA. A shuttle bus service, The Bethlehem Loop, also operates in Bethlehem.

Major highways

  • I-78
  • US 22
  • PA 33
  • PA 611

Telecommunications

Northampton County was once served only by the 215 area code from 1947 (when the North American Numbering Plan of the Bell System went into effect) until 1994. With the county's growing population, however, Northampton County was afforded area code 610 in 1994. Today, Northampton County is covered by 610. An overlay area code, 484, was added to the 610 service area in 1999. A plan to introduce area code 835 as an additional overlay was rescinded in 2001.

Recreation

There are 2 Pennsylvania state parks in Northampton County.

Communities

Map of Northampton County Pennsylvania With Municipal and Township Labels
Map of Northampton County, Pennsylvania with Municipal Labels showing Cities and Boroughs (red), Townships (white), and Census-designated places (blue).

Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, townships, and two towns. The following cities, boroughs and townships are located in Northampton County:

Cities

Boroughs

Townships

  • Allen
  • Bethlehem
  • Bushkill
  • East Allen
  • Forks
  • Hanover
  • Lehigh
  • Lower Mount Bethel
  • Lower Nazareth
  • Lower Saucon
  • Moore
  • Palmer
  • Plainfield
  • Upper Mount Bethel
  • Upper Nazareth
  • Washington
  • Williams

Census-designated places

Census-designated places are geographical areas designated by the U.S. Census Bureau for the purposes of compiling demographic data. They are not actual jurisdictions under Pennsylvania law. Other unincorporated communities, such as villages, may be listed here as well.

Population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Northampton County.

county seat

Rank City/Town/Township/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)
1 Bethlehem (partially in Lehigh County) City 74,982
2 Easton City 26,800
3 Bethlehem Township Township 23,730
4 Palmer Township Township 20,691
5 Forks Township Township 14,721
6 Hanover Township Township 10,866
7 Lower Saucon Township Township 10,772
8 Lehigh Township Township 10,527
9 Northampton Borough 9,926
10 Moore Township Township 9,198
11 Bushkill Township Township 8,178
12 Wilson Borough 7,896
13 Middletown CDP 7,441
14 Upper Mount Bethel Township Township 6,706
15 Upper Nazareth Township Township 6,231
16 Plainfield Township Township 6,138
17 Hellertown Borough 5,898
18 Williams Township Township 5,884
19 Nazareth Borough 5,746
20 Lower Nazareth Township Township 5,674
21 Bangor Borough 5,273
22 Washington Township Township 5,122
23 East Allen Township Township 4,930
24 Allen Township Township 4,269
25 Palmer Heights CDP 3,762
26 Pen Argyl Borough 3,595
27 Eastlawn Gardens CDP 3,307
28 Lower Mount Bethel Township Township 3,101
29 North Catasauqua Borough 2,849
30 Wind Gap Borough 2,720
31 Bath Borough 2,693
32 Freemansburg Borough 2,636
33 Old Orchard CDP 2,434
34 Walnutport Borough 2,070
35 Cherryville CDP 1,580
36 Roseto Borough 1,567
T-37 Belfast CDP 1,257
T-37 West Easton Borough 1,257
39 Tatamy Borough 1,203
40 East Bangor Borough 1,172
41 Raubsville CDP 1,088
42 Stockertown Borough 927
43 Martins Creek CDP 631
44 Ackermanville CDP 610
45 Portland Borough 519
46 Glendon Borough 440
47 Chapman Borough 199

Education

Colleges and universities

Map of Northampton County Pennsylvania School Districts
Map of Northampton County, Pennsylvania school districts
  • Lafayette College, Easton
  • Lehigh University, Bethlehem
  • Moravian College, Bethlehem
  • Northampton County Area Community College, Bethlehem Township
  • Respect Graduate School, Bethlehem

Public school districts

  • Bangor Area School District
    • Bangor Area High School, Upper Mount Bethel Township
  • Bethlehem Area School District
  • Catasauqua Area School District
  • Easton Area School District
    • Easton Area High School, Palmer Township
  • Nazareth Area School District
  • Northampton Area School District
  • Pen Argyl Area School District
  • Saucon Valley School District
  • Wilson Area School District
    • Wilson Area High School, Wilson

Public charter schools

The Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Performing Arts, Bethlehem

Private high schools

  • Bethlehem Catholic High School, Bethlehem
  • Moravian Academy, Bethlehem
  • Notre Dame High School, Bethlehem Township

Notable people

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