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Sherman County, Oregon facts for kids

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Sherman County
Sherman County Courthouse in Moro
Sherman County Courthouse in Moro
Map of Oregon highlighting Sherman County
Location within the U.S. state of Oregon
Map of the United States highlighting Oregon
Oregon's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Oregon
Founded February 25, 1889
Seat Moro
Largest city Wasco
 • Total 831 sq mi (2,150 km2)
 • Land 824 sq mi (2,130 km2)
 • Water 7.5 sq mi (19 km2)  0.9%%
 • Total 1,870
 • Estimate 
1,907 Increase
 • Density 2.1/sq mi (0.8/km2)
Time zone UTC−8 (Pacific)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−7 (PDT)
Congressional district 2nd

Sherman County is one of the 36 counties in the U.S. state of Oregon. As of the 2020 census, the population was 1,870, making it the second-least populous county in Oregon after nearby Wheeler. The county seat is Moro, and the largest city is Wasco. The county is named for William Tecumseh Sherman, a Union general in the American Civil War.


Grain Elevator (Sherman County, Oregon scenic images) (sheDB0149)
A grain elevator along Gordon Ridge Road, Sherman County
Old Grain Elevator (Sherman County, Oregon scenic images) (sheD0049)
Old grain elevator in Kent
Grain Elevator (Sherman County, Oregon scenic images) (sheD0041)
A grain elevator at Highway 97 and Rosebush Lane, Sherman County

As the pioneers felt crowded in the new settlements of western Oregon, they turned east to the Columbia Plateau for new opportunities. The county's first white settler was William Graham, who located at the mouth of the Deschutes River in 1858. Homesteaders, eager for land, arrived in the 1880s by steamboat, stagecoach and wagon. Soon farmers received government patents.

As the population grew, so did the sentiment for independence from Wasco County. Sherman County was created on February 25, 1889, out of the northeast corner of Wasco County. The county's borders have been changed only once, in 1891, when the Legislative Assembly moved the county line 18 miles (29 km) farther south into Wasco County.

The town of Wasco was designated the county seat by the Legislative Assembly although this designation was contested between Wasco and Moro. Following the addition of a portion of Wasco County, Moro became the eventual winner.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 831 square miles (2,150 km2), of which 824 square miles (2,130 km2) is land and 7.5 square miles (19 km2) (0.9%) is water.

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 1,792
1900 3,477 94.0%
1910 4,242 22.0%
1920 3,826 −9.8%
1930 2,978 −22.2%
1940 2,321 −22.1%
1950 2,271 −2.2%
1960 2,446 7.7%
1970 2,139 −12.6%
1980 2,172 1.5%
1990 1,918 −11.7%
2000 1,934 0.8%
2010 1,765 −8.7%
2020 1,870 5.9%
2021 (est.) 1,907 8.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2020
Oregon Population Growth by County
From 2000 to 2007, Sherman County lost 4.1% of its population, the second-lowest growth rate in the state.

2010 census

As of the 2010 census, there were 1,765 people, 777 households, and 492 families living in the county. The population density was 2.1 inhabitants per square mile (0.81/km2). There were 918 housing units at an average density of 1.1 per square mile (0.42/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 93.4% white, 1.6% American Indian, 0.2% black or African American, 0.2% Asian, 0.1% Pacific islander, 2.7% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 5.6% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 22.6% were German, 16.5% were English, 13.0% were Irish, and 4.9% were American.

Of the 777 households, 23.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.2% were married couples living together, 7.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 36.7% were non-families, and 30.5% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.84. The median age was 48.2 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $41,354 and the median income for a family was $52,361. Males had a median income of $42,768 versus $32,386 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,688. About 13.9% of families and 20.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 38.2% of those under age 18 and 9.9% of those age 65 or over.



Census-designated place

Other unincorporated communities


Sherman County is predominantly an agricultural county, its economy receiving some aid from ranching and tourism. Its farms primarily produce wheat and barley. It is also home to the Biglow Canyon Wind Farm, the largest project of its kind in Oregon.

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