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Stanislaus County, California
County of Stanislaus
Spanish: Condado de Estanislao
Modesto Arch.JPG
KnightsFerryGS.jpg
TuolomneRiverWaterfordCA.jpg
Images, from top down, left to right: Modesto Arch, Knights Ferry's General Store, a view of the Tuolumne River from Waterford
Official seal of Stanislaus County, California
Seal
Motto(s): 
"Striving to be the best!"
Location in the state of California
Location in the state of California
Country United States
State California
Region San Joaquin Valley
Incorporated April 1, 1854
Named for Estanislao
County seat (and largest city) Modesto
Area
 • Total 1,515 sq mi (3,920 km2)
 • Land 1,495 sq mi (3,870 km2)
 • Water 20 sq mi (50 km2)
Highest elevation
3,807 ft (1,160 m)
Population
 • Total 514,453
 • Estimate 
(2019)
550,660
 • Density 339.57/sq mi (131.11/km2)
Time zone UTC−8 (Pacific Time Zone)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−7 (Pacific Daylight Time)
Area code 209
FIPS code 06-099
GNIS feature ID 277314

Stanislaus County ( Spanish: Condado de Estanislao) is a county in California's San Joaquin Valley. As of the 2010 census, the population was 514,453. The county seat is Modesto.

Stanislaus County makes up the Modesto Metropolitan Statistical Area. The county is located just east of the San Francisco Bay Area and serves as a bedroom community for those who work in the eastern part of the Bay Area.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,515 square miles (3,920 km2), of which 1,495 square miles (3,870 km2) is land and 20 square miles (52 km2) (1.3%) is water.

Stanislaus County has historically been divided socially and economically by the north-flowing San Joaquin River, which provided a natural barrier to trade and travel for much of the county's history. Isolated from the main rail corridors through the county and the irrigation projects that generated much of the region's economic prosperity, the part of Stanislaus County west of the river (known to locals as the "West Side" of the county) has largely remained rural and economically dependent on agricultural activities. Because of its proximity to Interstate 5 and the California Aqueduct some towns within this area, including Patterson and Newman, have experienced tremendous growth and are being transformed into bedroom communities for commuters from the nearby San Francisco Bay Area, while others (including Westley and Crows Landing) have been almost entirely overlooked by development and remain tiny farming communities.

Flora and fauna

There are a number or rare and endangered species found in Stanislaus County. The Beaked Clarkia, (Clarkia rostrata), is listed as a candidate for the Federal Endangered Species List. It has only been found in blue oak-gray pine associations in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada, a habitat which occurs at moderately high elevations. Colusa Grass, (Neostapfsia colusana) is listed as endangered by the State. It is restricted to vernal pools. (Torrey, 1989)

National protected area

Transportation

Major highways

Public transportation

  • Stanislaus Regional Transit (StaRT) provides fixed route and dial-a-ride service throughout the county. StaRT also connects with Merced County Transit in Gustine and Turlock.
  • Modesto Area Express (MAX) operates within Modesto, with limited service to Salida, Empire, and Ceres. MAX also runs special commuter routes connecting with the BART and Altamont Commuter Express rail systems.
  • The cities of Ceres, Oakdale, Riverbank, and Turlock run small local bus systems.
  • Both Greyhound and Amtrak have stops in Modesto and Turlock. Amtrak for Turlock actually stops in Denair.

Airports

Modesto City-County Airport has a number of scheduled passenger flights. Other (general aviation) airports around the county include Oakdale Airport, Patterson Airport, and Turlock Airpark.

Demographics

2011

Places by population, race, and income

2010

Historical population
Census Pop.
1860 2,245
1870 6,499 189.5%
1880 8,751 34.7%
1890 10,040 14.7%
1900 9,550 −4.9%
1910 22,522 135.8%
1920 43,557 93.4%
1930 56,641 30.0%
1940 74,866 32.2%
1950 127,231 69.9%
1960 157,294 23.6%
1970 194,506 23.7%
1980 265,900 36.7%
1990 370,522 39.3%
2000 446,997 20.6%
2010 514,453 15.1%
2019 (est.) 550,660 7.0%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2015

The 2010 United States Census reported that Stanislaus County had a population of 514,453. The racial makeup of Stanislaus County was 337,342 (65.6%) White, 14,721 (2.9%) African American, 5,902 (1.1%) Native American, 26,090 (5.1%) Asian (1.5% Indian, 1.1% Filipino, 0.7% Cambodian, 0.5% Chinese, 0.3% Vietnamese, 0.3% Laotian, 0.1% Japanese, 0.1% Korean, 0.1% Cambodian), 3,401 (0.7%) Pacific Islander, 99,210 (19.3%) from other races, and 27,787 (5.4%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 215,658 persons (41.9%); 37.6% of Stanislaus County is Mexican, 0.6% Puerto Rican, 0.5% Salvadoran, 0.2% Nicaraguan, and 0.2% Guatemalan.

(Note - the US Census Bureau says "this system treats race and ethnicity as separate and independent categories. This means that within the federal system everyone is classified as both a member of one of the four race groups and also as either Hispanic or non-Hispanic." Consequently, there are a total of 8 race-ethnicity categories (e.g., White-Hispanic, White-non-Hispanic, Black-Hispanic, Black-non-Hispanic, etc.). That in turn means that the total Hispanic population is made up of each of the four groups, thus the separate distinction for Hispanic and non-Hispanic.)

2000

As of the census of 2000, there were 446,997 people, 145,146 households, and 109,585 families residing in the county. The population density was 299 people per square mile (116/km2). There were 150,807 housing units at an average density of 101 per square mile (39/km2). The racial/ethnic makeup of the county was 69.3% White, 2.6% Black, 4.2% Asian, 1.3% Native American, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 16.8% from other races, and 5.4% from two or more races. 31.7% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 8.4% were of German, 6.3% English, 6.0% American, 5.5% Irish, and 5.1% Portuguese ancestry according to Census 2000. 67.8% spoke English, 23.7% Spanish, 1.5% Syriac, and 1.3% Portuguese as their first language.

There were 145,146 households, out of which 41.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.0% were married couples living together, 13.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.5% were non-families. 19.4% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.03 and the average family size was 3.47.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 31.1% under the age of 18, 9.8% from 18 to 24, 29.0% from 25 to 44, 19.5% from 45 to 64, and 10.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 96.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.4 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $40,101, and the median income for a family was $44,703. Males had a median income of $36,969 versus $26,595 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,913. About 12.3% of families and 16.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.5% of those under age 18 and 8.8% of those age 65 or over.

Metropolitan Statistical Area

The United States Office of Management and Budget has designated Stanislaus County as the Modesto, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area. The United States Census Bureau ranked the Modesto, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area as the 103rd most populous metropolitan statistical area of the United States as of July 1, 2012.

The Office of Management and Budget has further designated the Modesto, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area as a component of the more extensive Modesto-Merced, CA Combined Statistical Area, the 62nd most populous combined statistical area and the 71st most populous primary statistical area of the United States as of July 1, 2012.

As more cities in the county are becoming exurbs of the San Francisco Bay Area, urban planner and academic Wendell Cox wrote that the Office of Management and Budget could add Stanislaus County to the San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland, CA Combined Statistical Area in the future.

Economy

Agriculture is Stanislaus County's number one industry, with almonds being the primary agricultural product.

Education

The California State University, Stanislaus is a campus of the California State University located in Turlock.

The Yosemite Community College District covers a 4,500 square mile area and serves a population over 550,000 encompassing all of two counties (Stanislaus and Tuolumne) and parts of 4 others (Calaveras, Merced, San Joaquin and Santa Clara). It is composed of 2 colleges: Modesto Junior College in Modesto and Columbia College in Sonora in Tuolumne County to the northeast.

There is also a Kaplan College campus in Modesto, an ITT Technical Institute campus in Lathrop in San Joaquin County to the northeast, and a San Joaquin Valley College campus in Modesto.

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