- Adams County, Colorado
Infobox U.S. County
county = Adams County
state = Colorado
map size = 250
founded date = April 15
founded year = 1901
seat wl = Brighton
largest city wl = Thornton
area percentage = 0.48%
census yr = 2000
pop = 363857
web = www.co.adams.co.us
named for = Alva Adams
Fifth most populous Colorado county
Adams County is the fifth most populous of the 64 counties of the
State of Coloradoof the United States. The United States Census Bureauestimates that the county population was 414,338 in 2006, a 13.87% increase since U.S. Census 2000.cite web | url = http://www.census.gov/popest/counties/files/CO-EST2006-ALLDATA.csv | title = Annual County Population Estimates and Estimated Components of Change: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2006 (CO-EST2006-alldata) | format = CSV | work = 2006 Population Estimates | publisher = United States Census Bureau, Population Division | date = 2007-03-22| accessdate = 2007-05-08] Adams County is named for Alva Adams, Governor of the State of Colorado 1887-1889, 1897-1899, and 1905.cite book|title=The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States|year=1905|pages=23|author=Gannett, Henry|url=http://books.google.com/books/pdf/The_Origin_of_Certain_Place_Names_in_the.pdf?id=BqwPAAAAIAAJ&output=pdf&sig=3IVIg6u-evPGlrv4j1uDL7rQ09c] The county seatis Brighton. Adams County is part of the Denver-Aurora Metropolitan Statistical Areaand the Denver-Aurora-Boulder Combined Statistical Area.
On May 30, 1854, the
Kansas-Nebraska Actcreated the Territory of Nebraskaand Territory of Kansas, divided by the Parallel 40° North (168th Avenue in present-day Adams County). The future Adams County, Colorado, occupied a strip of northern Arapahoe County, Kansas Territory, immediately south of the Nebraska Territory.
In 1859, John D. "Colonel Jack" Henderson built a ranch, trading post, and hotel on Henderson Island in the
South Platte Riverin Arapahoe County, Kansas Territory. Jack Henderson was the former editor and proprietor of the Leavenworth ( Kansas Territory) Journal and an outspoken pro-slavery politician who had been accused of vote fraud in eastern Kansas. Henderson sold meat and provisions to gold seekers on their way up the South Platte River Trail to the gold fields during the Pike's Peak Gold Rush. Henderson Island was the first permanent settlement in the South Platte River Valley between Fort Saint Vrainin the Nebraska Territoryand the Cherry Creek Diggings in the Kansas Territory. Jack Henderson eventually returned to eastern Kansas and (ironically) fought for the Union in the American Civil War. Henderson Island is today the site of the Adams County Regional Park and Fairgrounds.
The eastern portion of the
Kansas Territorywas admitted to the Union as the State of Kansas on January 29, 1861, and on February 28, 1861, the remaining western portion of the territory was made part of the new Colorado Territory.cite web | date = April 18, 2001 | url = http://www.colorado.gov/dpa/doit/archives/arcgov.html | title = State Government History | format = HTML| publisher = State of Colorado, Department of Personnel & Administration, Colorado State Archives | accessdate = November 28 | accessyear = 2006] The Colorado Territorycreated Arapahoe County, on November 1, 1861, and Colorado was admitted to the Union on August 1, 1876.
In 1901, the
Colorado General Assemblyvoted to split Arapahoe County into three parts: a new Adams County, a new consolidated City and County of Denver, and the remainder of the Arapahoe County to be renamed South Arapahoe County. A ruling by the Colorado Supreme Court, subsequent legislation, and a referendumdelayed the creation of Adams County until November 15, 1902. Governor James Bradley Ormandesignated Brighton as the temporary Adams County Seat. Adams County originally stretched 160 miles (258 kilometers) from present-day Sheridan Boulevard to the Kansasstate border. On May 12, 1903, the eastern 88 miles (142 kilometers) of Adams County was transferred to the new Washington County and the new Yuma County, reducing the length of Adams County to the present 72 miles (116 kilometers). On November 8, 1904, Adams County voters chose Brighton as the permanent county seat.
A 1989 vote transferred 53 square miles (137 square kilometers) of Adams County to the City and County of Denver for the proposed
Denver International Airport, leaving the densely populated western portion of the county as two oddly-shaped peninsulas. Adams County lost the tip of its northwest corner when the consolidated City and County of Broomfield was created on November 15, 2001.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,198
square miles (3,102 km²), of which, 1,192 square miles (3,087 km²) of it is land and 6 square miles (15 km²) of it (0.48%) is water.
Adams County surrounds (and surrendered the land for) most of
Denver International Airportwhich is in the City and County of Denver, Colorado.
*City and County of Denver, Colorado - south
*City and County of Broomfield, Colorado - northwest
As of the
censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 363,857 people, 128,156 households, and 92,144 families residing in the county. The population densitywas 305 people per square mile (118/km²). There were 132,594 housing units at an average density of 111 per square mile (43/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 77.29% White, 2.97% Black or African American, 1.19% Native American, 3.21% Asian, 0.12% Pacific Islander, 11.73% from other races, and 3.49% from two or more races. 28.19% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 128,156 households out of which 37.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.80% were married couples living together, 12.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.10% were non-families. 21.20% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.27.
In the county the population was spread out with 28.60% under the age of 18, 10.30% from 18 to 24, 34.00% from 25 to 44, 19.40% from 45 to 64, and 7.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 31 years. For every 100 females there were 102.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 102.10 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $47,323, and the median income for a family was $52,517. Males had a median income of $36,499 versus $28,053 for females. The
per capita incomefor the county was $19,944. About 6.50% of families and 8.90% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.90% of those under age 18 and 7.30% of those age 65 or over.
Cities and town
Seven cities and one town (Bennett) have been established in the county. Portions of most of these municipalities lie in adjacent counties as well:
Community development organizations
National wildlife refuge
Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge
Barr Lake State Park
South Platte Trail
American Discovery Trail
Big Dry Creek National Recreation Trail
Highline Canal National Recreation Trail
Platte River Greenway National Recreation Trail
Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Recreation Trail
License plate code
Adams County has used the following county codes on Colorado
license platesissued to passenger vehicles in the county: TE-UF, GA-GG, SAA-SEW, and SEY-TZZ. [http://www.15q.net/coco.html]
Arapahoe County, Kansas Territory
Arrappahoe County, Jefferson Territory
Arapahoe County, Colorado Territory
Colorado census statistical areas
Colorado metropolitan areas
Denver-Aurora Metropolitan Statistical Area
Denver-Aurora-Boulder Combined Statistical Area
Front Range Urban Corridor
* [http://www.co.adams.co.us/ Adams County Government website]
** [http://www.co.adams.co.us/index.cfm?d=standard&b=3&c=71&s=245&p=587 History of Adams County, Colorado]
* [http://www.rootsweb.com/~coadams/forgottenpast-2/henderson.htm Biography of John D. Henderson]
* [http://www.stanwyck.com/cogenweb/cocounties.html Colorado County Evolution by Don Stanwyck]
* [http://www.coloradohistory.org/ Colorado Historical Society]
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