Parker, Arizona

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Parker, Arizona
Parker-(A) Parker Downtown.jpg
Historic Downtown Parker
La Paz County Arizona Incorporated and Unincorporated areas Parker Highlighted 0453070.svg
Location of Parker in La Paz County, Arizona
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Parker, Arizona
Location in the United States
Coordinates: 34°8′41″N114°17′23″W / 34.14472°N 114.28972°W / 34.14472; -114.28972 Coordinates: 34°8′41″N114°17′23″W / 34.14472°N 114.28972°W / 34.14472; -114.28972 [1]
Country United States
State Arizona
County La Paz
   Mayor Daniel Beaver
  Total21.99 sq mi (56.95 km2)
  Land21.98 sq mi (56.92 km2)
  Water0.01 sq mi (0.03 km2)
423 ft (129 m)
(2016) [4]
  Density137.69/sq mi (53.16/km2)
Time zone UTC-7 (MST (no DST))
ZIP code
Area code(s) 928
FIPS code 04-53070
Website Town Website

Parker (Mojave 'Amat Kuhwely, formerly 'Ahwe Nyava) is the county seat of La Paz County, Arizona, United States, [5] on the Colorado River in Parker Valley. The population was 3,083 at the 2010 census. [3]

Mojave or Mohave is the native language of the Mohave people along the Colorado River in northwestern Arizona, southeastern California, and southwestern Nevada. Approximately 70% of the speakers reside in Arizona, while approximately 30% reside in California. It belongs to the River branch of the Yuman language family, together with Quechan and Maricopa.

A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or civil parish. The term is used in Canada, China, Romania, Taiwan and the United States. County towns have a similar function in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, and historically in Jamaica.

La Paz County, Arizona County in the United States

La Paz County is a county in the western part of the U.S. state of Arizona. As of the 2010 census, its population was 20,489, making it the second-least populous county in Arizona. The county seat is Parker. The name of the county is the Spanish word for "the peace", and is taken from the early settlement of La Paz along the Colorado River.



Founded in 1908, the town was named after Ely Parker, the first Native American commissioner for the U.S. government. The original town site of Parker was surveyed and laid out in 1909 by a railroad location engineer by the name of Earl. H. Parker for the Arizona & California Railway. The town officially incorporated in 1948 and became the county seat for the newly created La Paz county on January 1, 1983.

Camp Colorado and Parkers Landing

The town's name and origin began when a post office called Parker was established January 6, 1871, at Parker's Landing and the site of the Parker Indian Agency, named for Ely Parker, on the Colorado River Indian Reservation, 4 miles down river from the site of the railroad bridge of the modern town, to serve the Indian agency. [6] [7] [8] :118 What became Parkers Landing was established on the river as the place to land and pick up cargo and personnel for the Indian Agency and the U. S. Army detachment that was stationed there at Camp Colorado from 1864 to 1869 during the first years of the Reservation. Camp Colorado was abandoned after wind blown sparks from the departing steamboat Cocopah rapidly burned down the brush huts of the officers of the garrison, and endangered its barracks and storehouses. [9] :66, n.61 [10]

Cocopah II (Sternwheeler)

Cocopah II, was a stern-wheel paddle-steamer, the tenth steamboat on the Colorado River, first put on the river in 1867.


The city is on the Colorado River just south of the Headgate Rock Dam and Moovalya Lake. Arizona State Route 95 and California State Route 62 (across the Colorado River) serve the city. [11]

Colorado River major river in the western United States and Mexico

The Colorado River is one of the principal rivers in the Southwestern United States and northern Mexico. The 1,450-mile-long (2,330 km) river drains an expansive, arid watershed that encompasses parts of seven U.S. and two Mexican states. Starting in the central Rocky Mountains of Colorado, the river flows generally southwest across the Colorado Plateau and through the Grand Canyon before reaching Lake Mead on the Arizona–Nevada border, where it turns south toward the international border. After entering Mexico, the Colorado approaches the mostly dry Colorado River Delta at the tip of the Gulf of California between Baja California and Sonora.

Arizona State Route 95 highway in Arizona

State Route 95, also known as SR 95, is a north–south state highway along the western edge of Arizona that is split into two sections.

California State Route 62 highway in California

State Route 62 is a state highway in the U.S. state of California.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 22.0 square miles (57 km2), of which, 22.0 square miles (57 km2) of it is land and 0.05% is water.

United States Census Bureau Bureau of the United States responsible for the census and related statistics

The United States Census Bureau is a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System, responsible for producing data about the American people and economy. The Census Bureau is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce and its director is appointed by the President of the United States.

According to Census Bureau maps, the town is divided into two non-contiguous sections; the northern section consists of the original town and is located in the Colorado River Indian reservation and the southern section consists of a larger, roughly rectangular section of largely undeveloped territory. The undeveloped territory consist of extensive unpaved roads. Of the few that are paved Mohave Road is the most utilized between the town and the territory. The same road can be taken 15.5 miles south to the Town of Poston which is noted for its relocation camps for Japanese Americans during World War II.

Colorado River Indian Tribes federally recognized tribe

The Colorado River Indian Tribes is a federally recognized tribe consisting of the four distinct ethnic groups associated with the Colorado River Indian Reservation: Chemehuevi, the Mohave, Hopi, and Navajo. The tribe has about 4,277 enrolled members. A total population of 9,485 currently resides within the tribal reservation according to the 2012-2016 American Community Survey data.

Poston, Arizona Place in Arizona, United States

Poston is a census-designated place (CDP) in La Paz County, Arizona, United States, in Parker Valley. The population was 389 at the 2000 census.

Japanese Americans ethnic group

Japanese Americans are Americans who are fully or partially of Japanese descent, especially those who identify with that ancestry, along with their cultural characteristics. Japanese Americans were among the three largest Asian American ethnic communities during the 20th century; but, according to the 2000 census, they have declined in number to constitute the sixth largest Asian American group at around 1.4 million, including those of partial ancestry. According to the 2010 census, the largest Japanese American communities were found in California with 272,528, Hawaii with 185,502, New York with 37,780, Washington with 35,008, Illinois with 17,542, and Ohio with 16,995. Southern California has the largest Japanese American population in North America and the city of Torrance holds the densest Japanese American population in the 48 contiguous states.


Climate data for Parker, Arizona (1971–2000; extremes since 1893)
Record high °F (°C)87
Average high °F (°C)67.4
Average low °F (°C)40.7
Record low °F (°C)10
Average rainfall inches (mm)0.87
Average rainy days (≥ 0.01 inch)
Source: NOAA [12]

Parker has an arid climate classification, which is characterized by extremely hot summers and warm winters.

Wintertime highs in Parker are generally in the upper 60s to lower 70s. Lows during the winter are between 40 to 50 °F (4.4 to 10.0 °C) with an occasional morning dipping below 32 °F (0 °C). The all-time lowest recorded temperature in Parker occurred on December 31, 1911, when temperatures bottomed out at 9 °F (−12.8 °C); however, snow has been recorded only once when 3.0 inches (0.08 m) fell on one day in December 1932, [13] and no maximum below 32 °F (0 °C) has ever been observed. [14]

Summers in Parker can be dangerously hot, with highs in June, July, August, and September remaining in the 100 to 110 °F (37.8 to 43.3 °C) range, days over 115 °F (46.1 °C) or even 120 °F (48.9 °C) are not rare.

April and May both average 90 to 100 °F (32.2 to 37.8 °C) daytime highs. Even the month of October has an average high of 90.0 °F (32.2 °C). The all-time highest recorded temperature in Parker was 127 °F (52.8 °C), which occurred on July 7, 1905. This was, at the time, the all-time record high temperature in Arizona history until Lake Havasu City reached 128 °F (53.3 °C) on June 29, 1994.

Rainfall is uniformly scanty throughout the year in Parker, with no month averaging more than three days with measurable rainfall. The monsoon storms that provide much of the rain in southern and eastern parts of Arizona seldom effect Parker. The wettest month since records began in 1893 was September 1939, when a rare decaying hurricane produced a total of 8.85 inches (224.8 mm) including a record daily total of 3.41 inches (86.6 mm) on the fifth day of that month. The wettest calendar year has been 1992 with 13.59 inches (345.2 mm) – though from July 1992 to June 1993 the figure was slightly higher still at 13.74 inches (349.0 mm) – and the driest 1956 with 0.34 inches (8.6 mm). [13]


Historical population
1910 420
1930 1,315
1950 1,201
1960 1,64236.7%
1970 1,94818.6%
1980 2,54230.5%
1990 2,89714.0%
2000 3,1408.4%
2010 3,083−1.8%
Est. 20163,026 [4] −1.8%
U.S. Decennial Census [15]

As of the census [16] in 2000, there were 3,140 people, 1,064 households, and 791 families residing in the town. The population density was 142.8 people per square mile (55.2/km²). There were 1,157 housing units at an average density of 52.6 per square mile (20.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 62.04% White, 1.88% Black or African American, 23.09% Native American, 0.86% Asian, 0.16% Pacific Islander, 7.45% from other races, and 4.52% from two or more races. 29.78% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 1,064 households out of which 41.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 15.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.6% were non-families. 20.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.93 and the average family size was 3.38.

In the town, the population was spread out with 32.8% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 25.4% from 25 to 44, 22.8% from 45 to 64, and 9.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females, there were 93.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.4 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $34,625, and the median income for a family was $37,663. Males had a median income of $26,542 versus $21,006 for females. The per capita income for the town was $15,016. About 10.6% of families and 14.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.2% of those under age 18 and 13.9% of those age 65 or over.


Arizona State Route 95 runs through Parker, entering the town from the northeast as Rio Vista Highway then turning south in the intersection with California Ave. To the north of the intersection in California Ave. is the State Route 95 Truck spur, which leads to the Colorado River bridge and the eastern terminus of California State Route 62 in Earp.

Avi Suquilla Airport ( FAA LID : P20) is a public use airport located one nautical mile (1.8 km) east of the central business district of Parker. It is owned by the Colorado River Indian Tribes.

The Arizona & California Railroad is headquartered in the railroad depot in Parker, after replacing the Santa Fe Railway in 1991 as owner and operator of the railroad line through the town. It crosses over the Colorado River in a five span truss bridge in the town's northwestern limits, and is parallel to the road bridge.

See also

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  1. 1 2 U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Parker, Arizona
  2. "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved Jul 18, 2017.
  3. 1 2 "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau . Retrieved 2014-08-31.
  4. 1 2 "Population and Housing Unit Estimates" . Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  5. "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  6. U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Parker
  7. Will C. Barnes, Arizona Place Names, University of Arizona Bulletin, Vol. VI, No.1, University of Arizona, Tucson, 1935, p.319
  8. John and Lillian Theobald, Arizona Territory Post Offices & Postmasters, The Arizona Historical Foundation, Phoenix, 1961.
  9. Richard E. Lingenfelter, Steamboats on the Colorado River, 1852-1916, University of Arizona Press, Tucson, 1978 Archived 2016-01-18 at the Wayback Machine .
  10. Daily Alta California, Volume 22, Number 7248, 24 January 1870, p.1, col. 5, Arizona; Terrific Conflagration at Camp Colorado
  11. Parker, Arizona, 7.5 Minute Topographic Quadrangle, USGS, 1970 (1985 rev.)
  12. Climatography of the United States No. 20 – 1971-2000: Parker, AZ (COOP ID 026250)
  13. 1 2 PARKER, ARIZONA Period of Record General Climate Summary – Precipitation
  14. PARKER, ARIZONA Period of Record General Climate Summary – Temperature
  15. "Census of Population and Housing". Retrieved June 4, 2016.
  16. "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on September 11, 2013. Retrieved 2008-01-31.

See also