List of the most populous counties in the United States

List of the most populous counties in the United States

This is a list of the 100 largest counties in the United States by population. The list is based on the population estimates for July 1, 2007, the most recently released estimates from the United States Census Bureau. [cite web | title = 100 Largest Counties | work = Population Division | publisher = U.S. Census Bureau | url = | accessdate = 2008-06-11] It is not based on an actual count of population, as the United States conducts a head count census only once every ten years, most recently in 2000. To create this estimate, the Census Bureau starts with the base number as determined during the most recent decennial census, and then estimates births, deaths, and net migration based on various sources to establish the final number. [cite web | title = State and County Total Resident Population Estimates Method: July 1, 2006 | work = Population Division | publisher = U.S. Census Bureau | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-22]

The estimates released by the Census Bureau are not final, and are often disputed. Numerous local jurisdictions challenged their 2006 population estimate. For example, Baltimore City successfully challenged its original census estimate, resulting in a revised population estimate that moved Baltimore two places higher on the list. [cite web | title = 2006 challenges | work = Population Division | publisher = U.S. Census Bureau | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-22] As of June 11, 2008, there have been no successful challenges to the 2007 estimates. In addition to challenging official Census estimates, several states perform population estimates using a different methodology than the Census Bureau. California, for example, has released population estimates that generally exceed Census figures significantly. [cite web | title = E-2. California County Population Estimates and Components of Change | work = Department of Finance | publisher = State of California | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-22]

Many of the counties on the list include major cities or metropolitan areas. Two of the listed counties have consolidated city and county government, namely the City and County of Honolulu and the City and County of San Francisco. [cite web | title = This Is Your City and County of Honolulu Government | publisher = City and County of Honolulu | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-23] [cite web | title = City and County Organizational Chart | publisher = City and County of San Francisco | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-23] Baltimore, Maryland is identified as a city but is considered to be a county-equivalent by the Census Bureau, and is therefore included in the list. Queens County, Kings County, New York County, and Bronx County, New York are coterminous with boroughs of New York City, fall under the jurisdiction of the combined city government, and therefore lack a county seat. Each of these counties is listed instead with the location of its county courthouse.

List of most populous counties


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