Malheur County, Oregon

Last updated
Malheur County
Malheur County Courthouse.jpg
Malheur County Courthouse in Vale
Map of Oregon highlighting Malheur County.svg
Location within the U.S. state of Oregon
Oregon in United States.svg
Oregon's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 43°13′N117°38′W / 43.21°N 117.63°W / 43.21; -117.63
CountryFlag of the United States.svg United States
StateFlag of Oregon.svg  Oregon
FoundedFebruary 17, 1887
Named for Malheur River
Seat Vale
Largest city Ontario
Area
  Total9,930 sq mi (25,700 km2)
  Land9,888 sq mi (25,610 km2)
  Water42 sq mi (110 km2)  0.4%%
Population
 (2010)
  Total31,313
  Estimate 
(2019)
30,571
  Density3.2/sq mi (1.2/km2)
Time zones
primary UTC−7 (Mountain)
  Summer (DST) UTC−6 (MDT)
southern fifth UTC−8 (Pacific)
  Summer (DST) UTC−7 (PDT)
Congressional district 2nd
Website www.malheurco.org

Malheur County /mælˈhɪər/ is a county in the southeast corner of the U.S. state of Oregon. As of the 2010 census, the population was 31,313. [1] Its county seat is Vale, [2] and its largest city is Ontario. The county was named after the Malheur River, which runs through the county. The word "malheur" is French for misfortune or tragedy. [3]

Contents

Malheur County is included in the Ontario, Oregon Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Boise Combined Statistical Area. It is included in the eight-county definition of Eastern Oregon.

History

Malheur County was created February 17, 1887, from the southern portion of Baker County. It was first settled by miners and stockmen in the early 1860s. The discovery of gold in 1863 attracted further development, including settlements and ranches. Basques settled in the region in the 1890s and were mainly engaged in sheep raising. [ citation needed ]

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 9,930 square miles (25,700 km2), of which 9,888 square miles (25,610 km2) is land and 42 square miles (110 km2) (0.4%) is water. [4] It is the second-largest county in Oregon by area and the only county in Oregon in the Mountain Time Zone.

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

Highways

Railroads

Oregon Eastern Railroad

Pillars of Rome, near Rome PillarsOfRomePano1.jpg
Pillars of Rome, near Rome

Time zones

Most of Malheur County (shown in red) is in the Mountain Time Zone; a small portion in the southern part of the county is in the Pacific Time Zone along with the rest of the state of Oregon and neighboring Nevada. UTC hue4map US-OR.svg
Most of Malheur County (shown in red) is in the Mountain Time Zone; a small portion in the southern part of the county is in the Pacific Time Zone along with the rest of the state of Oregon and neighboring Nevada.

Malheur County is one of the few counties in the United States with two time zones. Most of the county is in the Mountain Time Zone, but a small portion in the south is in the Pacific Time Zone.

Demographics

Historical population
CensusPop.
1890 2,601
1900 4,20361.6%
1910 8,601104.6%
1920 10,90726.8%
1930 11,2693.3%
1940 19,76775.4%
1950 23,22317.5%
1960 22,764−2.0%
1970 23,1691.8%
1980 26,89616.1%
1990 26,038−3.2%
2000 31,61521.4%
2010 31,313−1.0%
2019 (est.)30,571 [5] −2.4%
U.S. Decennial Census [6]
1790-1960 [7] 1900-1990 [8]
1990-2000 [9] 2010-2019 [1]

2000 census

As of the census [10] of 2000, there were 31,615 people, 10,221 households, and 7,348 families living in the county. The population density was 3 people per square mile (1.2/km2). There were 11,233 housing units at an average density of 1 per square mile (0.4/km2). The racial makeup of the county was:

25.62% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 14.2% were of German, 10.5% English, 8.4% American and 6.9% Irish ancestry. 79.4% spoke English and 19.4% Spanish as their first language.

There were 10,221 households, out of which 36.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.30% were married couples living together, 10.40% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.10% were non-families. 23.70% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.77 and the average family size was 3.28.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 27.60% under the age of 18, 10.60% from 18 to 24, 27.20% from 25 to 44, 21.00% from 45 to 64, and 13.70% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 116.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 121.20 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $30,241, and the median income for a family was $35,672. Males had a median income of $25,489 versus $21,764 for females. The per capita income for the county was $13,895. About 14.60% of families and 18.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.80% of those under age 18 and 11.60% of those age 65 or over.

Malheur County is the poorest county in Oregon. [11] As of 2008, 21% of its residents live in poverty. [12]

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 31,313 people, 10,411 households, and 7,149 families living in the county. [13] The population density was 3.2 inhabitants per square mile (1.2/km2). There were 11,692 housing units at an average density of 1.2 per square mile (0.46/km2). [14] The racial makeup of the county was 77.5% white, 1.7% Asian, 1.2% American Indian, 1.2% black or African American, 0.1% Pacific islander, 15.5% from other races, and 2.9% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 31.5% of the population. [13] In terms of ancestry, 16.2% were German, 11.9% were English, 10.3% were Irish, and 9.9% were American. [15]

Of the 10,411 households, 34.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 11.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 31.3% were non-families, and 26.0% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.69 and the average family size was 3.24. The median age was 36.2 years. [13]

The median income for a household in the county was $39,144 and the median income for a family was $46,136. Males had a median income of $33,234 versus $27,883 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,335. About 15.2% of families and 22.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.1% of those under age 18 and 10.5% of those age 65 or over. [16]

Politics

Political orientations in Malheur County, Oregon (2009).gif

Like all counties in eastern Oregon, the majority of registered voters who are part of a political party in Malheur County are members of the Republican Party. In the 2008 presidential election, 69.10% of Malheur County voters voted for Republican John McCain, while 28.47% voted for Democrat Barack Obama and 2.42% of voters voted for a third-party candidate. These statistics do not include write-in votes. [18] These numbers show a small shift towards the Democratic candidate when compared to the 2004 presidential election, in which 74.9% of Malheur Country voters voted for George W. Bush, while 23.8% voted for John Kerry, and 1.3% of voters either voted for a third-party candidate or wrote in a candidate. [19]

Malheur County is one of the most Republican counties in Oregon when it comes to presidential elections. It was one of only two counties in Oregon to give the majority of its vote to Barry Goldwater and has favored the Republican candidate for decades. [20] The last Democratic candidate to carry the county was Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1940. [21] Further every Republican candidate since 1996 has received more than 60% of the county's vote. [22] Malheur County is also one of the most reliably Republican counties in state elections, for example in the 1998 gubernatorial election it was the only county to vote for Bill Sizemore instead of John Kitzhaber, and in the 1998 U.S. Senate election, it was the only county to vote for state senator John Lim over Ron Wyden.

As part of Oregon's 2nd congressional district it has been represented by Republican Greg Walden since 1999. At the state level, Malheur County is within Oregon's 30th Senate district, represented by Republican Cliff Bentz. In the Oregon House of Representatives 60th district it is represented by Republican Lynn Findley.

Presidential elections results
Presidential elections results [23]
Year Republican Democratic Third parties
2016 68.9%7,19421.5% 2,2469.5% 995
2012 68.8%6,85127.7% 2,7593.5% 346
2008 68.6%7,15728.3% 2,9493.1% 327
2004 74.9%8,12323.8% 2,5771.4% 146
2000 73.3%7,62422.5% 2,3364.3% 444
1996 61.1%6,04528.6% 2,82710.3% 1,020
1992 50.4%5,37423.8% 2,53925.8% 2,750
1988 66.6%6,28531.4% 2,9652.0% 193
1984 76.2%8,44123.6% 2,6110.2% 19
1980 67.8%7,70525.8% 2,9376.4% 722
1976 59.1%5,68236.5% 3,5074.4% 421
1972 67.4%5,90821.3% 1,87011.3% 993
1968 65.2%5,44724.2% 2,02110.7% 892
1964 52.3%4,17747.6% 3,7980.1% 8
1960 59.9%5,04340.1% 3,3810.0% 0
1956 61.3%4,98138.8% 3,1510.0% 0
1952 70.5%5,41429.2% 2,2450.3% 26
1948 55.4%3,26542.4% 2,4992.3% 134
1944 55.1%2,79744.0% 2,2340.9% 47
1940 49.4% 2,92949.9%2,9580.7% 42
1936 31.4% 1,38559.6%2,6309.0% 395
1932 42.3% 1,58953.9%2,0253.7% 140
1928 67.4%2,16431.6% 1,0161.0% 33
1924 51.9%1,67125.7% 82822.3% 718
1920 65.0%2,35229.7% 1,0755.3% 193
1916 42.4% 1,68248.8%1,9378.8% 350
1912 33.8% 64834.2%65632.1% 615
1908 54.4%80036.9% 5438.6% 127
1904 63.8%79922.4% 28013.8% 173

Economy

The county is 94% rangeland, with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) controlling 72% of the land. Irrigated fields in the county's northeast corner, known as Western Treasure Valley, are the center of intensive and diversified farming. Malheur County's economy also depends on tourism.

The county's two largest employers are Heinz of Ontario, a potato processor branded as Ore-Ida, and the Snake River Correctional Institution, five miles northwest of Ontario. [12]

Communities

A sugar beet plant of the Amalgamated Sugar Company in Nyssa Amalgamated Sugar Co. plant, Nyssa, OR.jpg
A sugar beet plant of the Amalgamated Sugar Company in Nyssa

Cities

Census-designated places

Other unincorporated communities

Ghost Towns

See also

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References

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  2. "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. "malheur - traduction - Dictionnaire Français-Anglais WordReference.com". www.wordreference.com (in French). Retrieved April 11, 2018.
  4. "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved February 26, 2015.
  5. "Population and Housing Unit Estimates" . Retrieved March 26, 2020.
  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.
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  10. "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau . Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  11. U.S. Census Data Archived September 23, 2015, at the Wayback Machine
  12. 1 2 Jacklet, Ben (April 2008). "Prisontown myth". Oregon Business magazine. Archived from the original on December 2, 2008. Retrieved March 25, 2008.
  13. 1 2 3 "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.
  14. "Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2010 - County". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 13, 2020. Retrieved February 23, 2016.
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  19. http://www.city-data.com/county/Malheur_County-OR.html Retrieved on 4/21/09
  20. David Leip's Presidential Atlas (Maps for Oregon by election)
  21. Geographie Electorale
  22. The New York Times electoral map (Zoom in on Oregon)
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Coordinates: 43°13′N117°38′W / 43.21°N 117.63°W / 43.21; -117.63