Merced County, California


Merced County, California
County of Merced
—  County  —

Seal
Location in the state of California
California's location in the United States
Country  United States
State  California
Region San Joaquin Valley
Incorporated 1855
County seat Merced
Area
 – Total 1,971.87 sq mi (5,107.1 km2)
 – Land 1,928.69 sq mi (4,995.3 km2)
 – Water 43.18 sq mi (111.8 km2)
Population (2010)
 – Total 255,793
 – Density 129.7/sq mi (50.1/km2)
Time zone Pacific Standard Time (UTC-8)
 – Summer (DST) Pacific Daylight Time (UTC-7)
Website co.merced.ca.us

Merced County (pronounced /mərˈsɛd/ mər-SED), is a county located in the Central Valley of the U.S. state of California, north of Fresno and southeast of San Jose. As of the 2010 census, the population was 255,793, up from 210,554 at the 2000 census. The county seat is Merced. The county is named after the Merced River.

Contents

History

The county derives its name from the Merced River, or El Río de Nuestra Señora de la Merced (River of Our Lady of Mercy); named in 1806 by an expedition, headed by Gabriel Moraga, which came upon it at the end of a hot dusty ride.

Between 1841 and 1844, during the era when California was a province of independent Mexico, four Mexican grants were made in what became Merced County: Orestimba, Panoche de San Juan y Los Carrisalitos, San Luis Gonzaga and Sanjon de Santa Rita

Merced County was formed in 1855 from parts of Mariposa County. Parts of its territory were given to Fresno County in 1856.

Geography

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 1,971.87 square miles (5,107.1 km2), of which 1,928.69 square miles (4,995.3 km2) (or 97.81%) is land and 43.18 square miles (111.8 km2) (or 2.19%) is water.[1]

Cities and towns

Cities over 10,000 population

Incorporated cities under 10,000 population

Unincorporated communities

Adjacent counties

National protected areas

Transportation infrastructure

Major highways

Public transportation

Airports

Merced Regional Airport, located two miles (3km) southwest of downtown Merced, provides passenger air service. General aviation airports in the county include Castle Airport, Gustine Airport, and Los Banos Municipal Airport.

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1860 1,141
1870 2,807 146.0%
1880 5,656 101.5%
1890 8,085 42.9%
1900 9,215 14.0%
1910 15,148 64.4%
1920 24,579 62.3%
1930 36,748 49.5%
1940 46,988 27.9%
1950 69,780 48.5%
1960 90,446 29.6%
1970 104,629 15.7%
1980 134,560 28.6%
1990 178,403 32.6%
2000 210,554 18.0%
2010 255,793 21.5%
[2][3][4]

2010

The 2010 United States Census reported that Merced County had a population of 255,793. The racial makeup of Merced County was 148,381 (58.0%) White, 9,926 (3.9%) African American, 3,473 (1.4%) Native American, 18,836 (7.4%) Asian, 583 (0.2%) Pacific Islander, 62,665 (24.5%) from other races, and 11,929 (4.7%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 140,485 persons (54.9%).[5]

Population reported at 2010 United States Census
The County
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Merced County 255,793 148,381 9,926 3,473 18,836 583 62,665 11,929 140,485
Incorporated
city
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Atwater 28,168 18,410 1,225 364 1,416 76 5,300 1,377 14,808
Dos Palos 4,950 3,377 167 62 37 4 1,075 228 3,075
Gustine 5,520 3,875 73 54 95 8 1,191 224 2,769
Livingston 13,058 5,263 106 348 2,223 18 4,547 553 9,547
Los Banos 35,972 20,846 1,354 512 1,162 134 10,123 1,841 23,346
Merced 78,958 41,177 4,958 1,153 9,342 174 17,804 4,350 39,140
Census-designated
place
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Ballico 406 237 2 3 11 2 128 23 210
Bear Creek 290 156 4 2 14 0 93 21 170
Cressey 394 253 1 3 15 1 95 26 195
Delhi 10,755 5,655 118 157 405 30 3,930 460 7,706
Dos Palos Y 323 225 1 8 1 0 82 6 197
El Nido 330 162 0 7 9 0 147 5 245
Franklin 6,149 3,455 273 77 931 12 1,072 329 3,250
Hilmar-Irwin 5,197 4,475 15 23 87 1 439 157 916
Le Grand 1,659 869 19 35 17 1 659 59 1,357
McSwain 4,171 3,196 56 34 282 9 422 172 1,081
Planada 4,584 1,681 22 23 46 1 2,725 86 4,347
Santa Nella 1,380 832 22 25 31 0 433 37 968
Snelling 231 206 0 3 6 0 13 3 33
South Dos Palos 1,620 809 135 21 36 10 552 57 1,262
Stevinson 313 228 4 0 0 0 73 8 133
Tuttle 103 77 6 0 6 0 9 5 31
University of California, Merced 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Volta 246 201 7 0 1 4 29 4 132
Winton 10,613 5,696 175 140 701 8 3,455 438 7,566
Unincorporated
communities
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
All others not CDPs (combined) 40,403 27,020 1,183 419 1,962 90 8,269 1,460 18,001

2000

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 210,554 people, 63,815 households, and 49,775 families residing in the county. The population density was 109 people per square mile (42/km²). There were 68,373 housing units at an average density of 36 per square mile (14/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 56.21% White, 3.83% Black or African American, 1.19% Native American, 6.80% Asian, 0.19% Pacific Islander, 26.13% from other races, and 5.65% from two or more races. 45.34% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 6.6% were of Portuguese and 6.0% German ancestry according to Census 2000. 55.1% spoke English, 35.3% Spanish, 3.2% Hmong, 2.9% Portuguese and 1.0% Punjabi as their first language.

There were 63,815 households out of which 45.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.8% were married couples living together, 14.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.0% were non-families. 17.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.25 and the average family size was 3.69.

In the county the population was spread out with 34.5% under the age of 18, 10.3% from 18 to 24, 27.9% from 25 to 44, 17.8% from 45 to 64, and 9.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29 years. For every 100 females there were 99.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.6 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $35,532, and the median income for a family was $38,009. Males had a median income of $31,721 versus $23,911 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,257. About 16.9% of families and 21.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 28.4% of those under age 18 and 10.7% of those age 65 or over.

As of 2008, according to the Lao Family Community, a nonprofit organization, about 8,000 Hmong lived in Merced County.[7]

Politics

Merced County vote
by party in presidential elections
Year GOP DEM Others
2008 45.0% 28,704 53.3% 34,031 1.7% 1,073
2004 56.5% 32,773 42.3% 24,491 1.2% 696
2000 51.8% 26,102 45.1% 22,726 3.2% 1,590
1996 44.4% 20,847 46.4% 21,786 9.2% 4,305
1992 36.5% 17,981 40.9% 20,133 22.7% 11,170
1988 51.2% 21,717 47.4% 20,105 1.4% 592
1984 58.9% 24,997 40.1% 17,012 1.1% 468
1980 48.8% 18,043 42.9% 15,886 8.3% 3,067
1976 46.1% 14,842 51.7% 16,637 2.3% 729
1972 54.3% 17,737 42.6% 13,914 3.5% 997
1968 40.9% 11,595 51.0% 14,453 8.1% 2,301
1964 31.2% 8,814 68.7% 19,431 0.1% 24
1960 43.4% 11,990 56.2% 15,545 0.4% 111
1956 46.0% 11,430 53.8% 13,366 0.2% 56
1952 53.3% 13,512 45.9% 11,639 0.9% 219
1948 42.6% 7,721 55.0% 9,959 2.5% 444
1944 41.3% 6,518 58.3% 9,192 0.4% 69
1940 36.4% 6,101 62.6% 10,501 1.1% 182
1936 25.5% 3,230 72.7% 9,208 1.8% 230
1932 27.2% 2,920 67.1% 7,202 5.7% 612
1928 60.2% 4,644 38.5% 2,970 1.4% 104
1924 52.9% 3,573 10.5% 710 36.5% 2,466
1920 63.0% 3,457 28.0% 1,537 9.0% 494

Merced is considered a bellwether county. The last Democrat to win a majority in the county was Barack Obama in 2008 and the last Republican was George W. Bush in 2004.

Merced is part of California's 18th congressional district, which is held by Democrat Dennis Cardoza. Merced was previously represented by Democratic representatives Gary Condit and Tony Coelho. In the state legislature Merced is in the 17th Assembly district, which is held by Democrat Cathleen Galgiani, and the 12th Senate district, which is held by Republican Anthony Cannella.

According to the California Secretary of State, as of October 20, 2008, there are 97,179 registered voters in Merced County. Of those, 44,704 (46.0%) are registered Democratic, 35,955 (37.0%) are registered Republican, 3,090 (3.2%) are registered with other political parties, and 13,430 (13.8%) declined to state a political party. Atwater and the unincorporated areas of Merced County have Republican plurality registration advantages. All of the other cities and towns in the county have Democratic pluralities or majorities in voter registration.

Places of interest

Castle Air Force Base and United States Penitentiary, Atwater are located in an unincorporated area near Atwater.

See also

California Central Valley county map.svg California Central Valley portal

References

External links

Coordinates: 37°11′N 120°43′W / 37.19°N 120.71°W / 37.19; -120.71


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