Bernalillo County, New Mexico

Bernalillo County, New Mexico

Infobox U.S. County
county = Bernalillo County
state = New Mexico

map size = 200
founded = 1852
seat = Albuquerque | area_total_sq_mi =1169
area_land_sq_mi =1166
area_water_sq_mi =3
area percentage = 0.22%
census yr = 2000
pop = 556678
density_km2 =184
web =

Bernalillo County is the most populated county in the U.S. state of New Mexico. [ Bernalillo County] from the website of the New Mexico Office of the State Historian] It is located within the Albuquerque, New Mexico Metropolitan Statistical Area and had a population of 556,678 at the 2000 census; in 2006, the population was estimated at 615,099. [ [ Bernalillo County QuickFacts] from the US Census Bureau] The county seat is AlbuquerqueGR|6.


Bernalillo County is in central New Mexico, and "stretches from the East Mountain area (just north of the Sandia Mountains) to the Volcano Cliffs on the west mesa." [ [ Bernalillo County Extension Office] from a New Mexico State University website] According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,169 square miles (3,027 km²), of which, 1,166 square miles (3,020 km²) of it is land and 3 square miles (7 km²) of it (0.22%) is water.

Adjacent counties

* Sandoval County, New Mexico - north
* Santa Fe County, New Mexico - east
* Torrance County, New Mexico - east
* Valencia County, New Mexico - south
* Cibola County, New Mexico - west


A local geographical oddity is that the town of Bernalillo, north of Albuquerque, is not actually in Bernalillo County. It is the county seat of Sandoval County.




*Los Ranchos de Albuquerque

Census-designated places

*Cedar Crest
*Isleta Village Proper
*North Valley
*South Valley

Other communities

*Isleta Pueblo


Bernalillo County was one of seven "partidos" established during Mexican rule; in 1852, within two years of the creation of the New Mexico Territory, Bernalillo became one of that territory's nine original counties.

In 1906, years after the Land Revision Act of 1891 provided for the setting aside of forest reserves, the parts of Bernalillo County's currently known as Cibola National Forest were established as reserves. [ [ Southwestern Region Initial Forest Reserves and National Forests] , from a U.S. Forest Service website] .

USS "Bernalillo County", a World War II tank landing ship, was named after the county in 1942 and later participated in the Allied invasion of Italy. Sandia Mountain Wilderness was created in 1978 and the Petroglyph National Monument was established in June 1990.


As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 556,678 people, 220,936 households, and 141,178 families residing in the county, making Bernalillo the most populated county in the state. The population density was 477 people per square mile (184/km²). There were 239,074 housing units at an average density of 205 per square mile (79/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 70.75% White, 2.77% Black or African American, 4.16% Native American, 1.93% Asian, 0.10% Pacific Islander, 16.07% from other races, and 4.22% from two or more races. 41.96% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 220,936 households out of which 31.40% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.00% were married couples living together, 12.90% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.10% were non-families. 28.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.06.

In the county the population was spread out with 25.30% under the age of 18, 10.30% from 18 to 24, 30.40% from 25 to 44, 22.40% from 45 to 64, and 11.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 95.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.90 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $38,788, and the median income for a family was $46,613. Males had a median income of $33,720 versus $26,318 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,790. About 10.20% of families and 13.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.90% of those under age 18 and 9.10% of those age 65 or over.


Darren White is the sheriff of Bernalillo County, and the Republican candidate for the U.S. representative from New Mexico's 1st congressional district, competing to earn the seat vacated by fellow Republican Heather Wilson.

Fernando de Baca, the county chairman of the Republican Party, resigned because of comments he made to BBC News about why he thought John McCain would do well in the 2008 presidential election. He told a BBC reporter that "the truth is that Hispanics came here as conquerors...African-Americans came here as slaves" and the Latino emphasis on hard work and family values and the Catholic Church's opposition to abortion made the community naturally conservative. [ [ Republican quits in Hispanic row] , a September 2008 BBC News article]


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