Jefferson County
Jefferson County Courthouse in Madras
Jefferson County Courthouse in Madras
Map of Oregon highlighting Jefferson County
Location within the U.S. state of Oregon
Map of the United States highlighting Oregon
Oregon's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 44°38′N 121°10′W / 44.63°N 121.17°W / 44.63; -121.17
Country United States
State Oregon
FoundedDecember 12, 1914
SeatMadras
Largest cityMadras
Area
 • Total1,791 sq mi (4,640 km2)
 • Land1,781 sq mi (4,610 km2)
 • Water10 sq mi (30 km2)  0.6%%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total24,502
 • Estimate 
(2021)
25,068 Increase
 • Density12/sq mi (5/km2)
Time zoneUTC−8 (Pacific)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−7 (PDT)
Congressional district2nd
Websitewww.co.jefferson.or.us

Jefferson County is one of the 36 counties in the U.S. state of Oregon. At the 2020 census, the population was 24,502.[1] The county seat is Madras.[2] The county is named after Mount Jefferson.[3]

History

Jefferson County was created on December 12, 1914, from a portion of Crook County. The county owes much of its agricultural prosperity to the railroad, which links Madras with the Columbia River, and was completed in 1911, and to the development of irrigation projects in the late 1930s. The railroad was completed despite constant feuds and battles between two lines working on opposite sides of the Deschutes River.

Madras was incorporated in 1911, and has been the permanent county seat since a general election in 1916. The first (temporary) county seat was Culver, which was selected by a three-man commission appointed by the governor. Due to repeated tie votes over several days (with one vote each cast for Culver, Metolius and Madras). The deadlock was eventually broken by allowing the Metolius Commissioner to post the tie-breaker, by voting for Culver.[citation needed]

Rapid development in adjacent Deschutes County during the 1990s had farmers in Jefferson County concerned that they might be priced out of their own farmlands, which could be replaced by destination resorts, golf courses and other amenities for recent arrivals.[citation needed]

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,791 square miles (4,640 km2), of which 1,781 square miles (4,610 km2) is land and 10 square miles (26 km2) (0.6%) is water.[4]

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
19203,211
19302,291−28.7%
19402,042−10.9%
19505,536171.1%
19607,13028.8%
19708,54819.9%
198011,59935.7%
199013,67617.9%
200019,00939.0%
201021,72014.3%
202024,50212.8%
2021 (est.)25,068[5]2.3%
U.S. Decennial Census[6]
1790-1960[7] 1900-1990[8]
1990-2000[9] 2010-2020[1]
From 2000 to 2007, Jefferson County's population grew by 15.9%, more than twice the national average. It was the third fastest growing county in the state, after neighboring Deschutes and Crook counties.
From 2000 to 2007, Jefferson County's population grew by 15.9%, more than twice the national average. It was the third fastest growing county in the state, after neighboring Deschutes and Crook counties.

2000 census

At the 2000 census,[10] there were 19,009 people, 6,727 households and 5,166 families living in the county. The population density was 11 per square mile (4.2/km2). There were 8,319 housing units at an average density of 5 per square mile (1.9/km2). The racial make-up was 68.98% White, 0.26% Black or African American, 15.68% Native American, 0.30% Asian, 0.22% Pacific Islander, 11.32% from other races, and 3.23% from two or more races. 17.74% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 13.6% were of German, 9.5% English, 8.7% American and 5.3% Irish ancestry. 82.2% spoke English, 15.5% Spanish and 1.0% Sahaptian as their first language.

There were 6,727 households, of which 35.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.50% were married couples living together, 10.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.20% were non-families. 18.60% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.80 and the average family size was 3.16.

29.80% of the population were under the age of 18, 7.70% from 18 to 24, 26.90% from 25 to 44, 23.20% from 45 to 64, and 12.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 101.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.80 males.

The median household income was $35,853 and the median family income was $39,151. Males had a median income of $31,126 and females $22,086s. The per capita income was $15,675. About 10.40% of families and 14.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.20% of those under age 18 and 5.90% of those age 65 or over.

2010 census

At the 2010 census, there were 21,720 people, 7,790 households and 5,646 families living in the county.[11] The population density was 12.2 per square mile (4.7/km2). There were 9,815 housing units at an average density of 5.5 per square mile (2.1/km2).[12] The racial make-up was 69.0% white, 16.9% American Indian, 0.6% black or African American, 0.4% Asian, 0.1% Pacific islander, 9.1% from other races, and 3.8% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 19.3% of the population.[11] In terms of ancestry, 15.0% were German, 9.4% were Irish, 8.3% were English, and 4.9% were American.[13]

Of the 7,790 households, 34.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.6% were married couples living together, 12.6% had a female householder with no husband present, 27.5% were non-families, and 22.2% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.68 and the average family size was 3.11. The median age was 39.6 years.[11]

The median household income was $41,425 and the median family income was $48,818. Males had a median income of $37,370 and females $30,047. The per capita income was $20,009. About 13.5% of families and 20.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 33.6% of those under age 18 and 6.5% of those age 65 or over.[14]

Communities

Cities

Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities

Politics

United States presidential election results for Jefferson County, Oregon[15]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 7,189 60.35% 4,393 36.88% 331 2.78%
2016 5,483 57.97% 2,980 31.50% 996 10.53%
2012 4,642 56.78% 3,301 40.38% 232 2.84%
2008 4,402 52.92% 3,682 44.27% 234 2.81%
2004 4,762 58.68% 3,243 39.96% 110 1.36%
2000 3,838 55.65% 2,681 38.87% 378 5.48%
1996 2,634 42.52% 2,555 41.24% 1,006 16.24%
1992 1,962 33.22% 2,161 36.59% 1,783 30.19%
1988 2,509 50.23% 2,346 46.97% 140 2.80%
1984 3,283 62.94% 1,920 36.81% 13 0.25%
1980 2,523 53.26% 1,654 34.92% 560 11.82%
1976 1,810 47.92% 1,769 46.84% 198 5.24%
1972 1,816 56.38% 1,229 38.16% 176 5.46%
1968 1,669 55.26% 1,160 38.41% 191 6.32%
1964 1,197 40.74% 1,739 59.19% 2 0.07%
1960 1,413 53.75% 1,214 46.18% 2 0.08%
1956 1,356 54.83% 1,117 45.17% 0 0.00%
1952 1,488 67.12% 723 32.61% 6 0.27%
1948 622 50.69% 559 45.56% 46 3.75%
1944 419 57.95% 297 41.08% 7 0.97%
1940 423 47.21% 467 52.12% 6 0.67%
1936 253 31.51% 514 64.01% 36 4.48%
1932 253 33.03% 477 62.27% 36 4.70%
1928 481 59.31% 308 37.98% 22 2.71%
1924 374 39.00% 242 25.23% 343 35.77%
1920 623 61.56% 300 29.64% 89 8.79%
1916 581 36.13% 904 56.22% 123 7.65%


Political orientations in Jefferson County, Oregon (2009)
Political orientations in Jefferson County, Oregon (2009)

Though Jefferson County is located in central Oregon, politically it falls in line with the eastern side of the state. The majority of registered voters who are part of a political party in Jefferson County, as well as most counties in eastern Oregon, are members of the Republican Party.[16] In the 2008 presidential election, 51.47% of Jefferson County voters voted for Republican John McCain, while 43.05% voted for Democrat Barack Obama and 5.46% of voters either voted for a Third Party candidate or wrote in a candidate.[17] These numbers show a small shift towards the Democratic candidate as well as a Third Party candidate when compared to the 2004 presidential election, in which 58.7% of Jefferson Country voters voted for George W. Bush, while 40% voted for John Kerry, and 1.3% of voters either voted for a Third Party candidate or wrote in a candidate.[18]

Economy

Agriculture is the predominant source of income in the county, with vegetable, grass and flower seeds, garlic, mint and sugar beets cultivated on some 60,000 acres (240 km2) of irrigated land. Jefferson County also has vast rangelands and until 2016 had an industrial base related to forest products. The Warm Springs Forest Products Industry, a multimillion-dollar complex owned by the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs — partially located in the northwestern corner of the county — was the single biggest industry. With 300 days of sunshine and a low yearly rainfall, fishing, hunting, camping, boating, water-skiing and rock hunting are major tourist activities.

The major landowners in the county are the Forest Service, which manages National Forest System Lands the comprise 24% of the lands within the county boundaries, and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs-Warm Springs Reservation, which owns and manages 21% of the lands within the county boundaries.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved April 11, 2022.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. ^ McArthur, Lewis A.; McArthur, Lewis L. (2003) [1928]. Oregon Geographic Names (7th ed.). Portland, Oregon: Oregon Historical Society Press. p. 509. ISBN 978-0875952772.
  4. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
  5. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Counties: April 1, 2020 to July 1, 2021". Retrieved April 11, 2022.
  6. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
  7. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
  8. ^ Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
  9. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
  10. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  11. ^ a b c "DP-1 Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 Demographic Profile Data". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 23, 2016.
  12. ^ "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 23, 2016.
  13. ^ "DP02 SELECTED SOCIAL CHARACTERISTICS IN THE UNITED STATES – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 23, 2016.
  14. ^ "DP03 SELECTED ECONOMIC CHARACTERISTICS – 2006-2010 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 23, 2016.
  15. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". US Election Atlas. Retrieved April 11, 2018.
  16. ^ "2018 October voter registration". Oregon Secretary of State. November 15, 2018. p. 2. Archived from the original on July 23, 2019. Retrieved November 20, 2018.
  17. ^ "[no title cited]". Retrieved May 20, 2009.[permanent dead link].
  18. ^ "[no title cited]". Retrieved April 21, 2009.

Coordinates: 44°38′N 121°10′W / 44.63°N 121.17°W / 44.63; -121.17