Douglas County, Kansas
Douglas County, KS Events Directory
 
About Douglas County, KS
Douglas County, Kansas
County
Douglas county kansas courthouse.jpg
Douglas County Courthouse in Lawrence
Map of Kansas highlighting Douglas County
Location in the U.S. state of Kansas
Map of the United States highlighting Kansas
Kansas's location in the U.S.
Coordinates: 38°52?N 95°14?W / 38.867°N 95.233°W / 38.867; -95.233
Founded August 25, 1855
Named for Stephen Douglas
Seat Lawrence
Largest city Lawrence
Area
 o Total 475 sq mi (1,230 km2)
 o Land 456 sq mi (1,181 km2)
 o Water 19 sq mi (49 km2), 4.0%
Population (est.)
 o (2016) 119,440
 o Density 243/sq mi (94/km²)
Area code(s) 785
Congressional district 2nd
Central: UTC-6/-5
Website douglascountyks.org

Douglas County (county code DG) is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 110,826,[1] making it the fifth-most populous county in Kansas. Its county seat and most populous city is Lawrence.[2]

History

Early history

For millennia, the Great Plains of North America was inhabited by nomadic Native Americans. From the 16th century to 18th century, the Kingdom of France claimed ownership of large parts of North America. In 1762, after the French and Indian War, France secretly ceded New France to Spain, per the Treaty of Fontainebleau.

19th century

In 1802, Spain returned most of the land to France, but keeping title to about 7,500 square miles. In 1803, most of the land for modern day Kansas was acquired by the United States from France as part of the 828,000 square mile Louisiana Purchase for 2.83 cents per acre.

In 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized, then in 1861 Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. In 1855, Douglas County was established. Douglas County was opened for settlement on May 15, 1854, and was named for Stephen A. Douglas,[3] a senator from Illinois. The county was practically at the center of the Bleeding Kansas years as leaders in Lecompton, the territorial capital, wanted Kansas to be a slave state and leaders in Lawrence wanted Kansas to be a free state. Because of this, multiple events took place, including the drafting of the Lecompton Constitution admitting Kansas as a slave state, the sacking of Lawrence, and the Battle of Black Jack.[]

The first railroad in Douglas County, the Union Pacific, was built through that territory in 1864.[4]

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 475 square miles (1,230 km2), of which 456 square miles (1,180 km2) is land and 19 square miles (49 km2) (4.0%) is water.[5] It is the fifth-smallest county in Kansas by land area. Much of its northern boundary is defined by the Kansas River, which flows through Lawrence and provides hydropower at the Bowersock Dam.

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Douglas County comprises the Lawrence, KS Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Kansas City-Overland Park-Kansas City, MO-KS Combined Statistical Area.

As of the 2000 census,[11] there were 99,962 people, 38,486 households, and 21,167 families residing in the county. The population density was 219 people per square mile (84/km²). There were 40,250 housing units at an average density of 88 per square mile (34/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 86.1% White, 4.2% Black or African American, 2.6% Native American, 3.1% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 1.2% from other races, and 2.7% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.3% of the population.

There were 38,486 households out of which 27.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.1% were married couples living together, 8.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 45.0% were non-families. 28.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.97.

In the county, the population was spread out with 20.4% under the age of 18, 26.4% from 18 to 24, 28.3% from 25 to 44, 16.9% from 45 to 64, and 7.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 27 years. For every 100 females there were 98.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $37,547, and the median income for a family was $53,991. Males had a median income of $35,577 versus $27,225 for females. The per capita income for the county was $19,952. About 6.2% of families and 15.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.0% of those under age 18 and 7.3% of those age 65 or over.

Government

Presidential Elections Results[12]
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2016 29.3% 14,688 62.3% 31,195 8.4% 4,204
2012 35.9% 17,401 60.4% 29,267 3.7% 1,796
2008 33.4% 17,929 64.1% 34,398 2.5% 1,314
2004 41.0% 20,544 57.1% 28,634 1.9% 933
2000 42.8% 17,062 45.8% 18,249 11.4% 4,527
1996 42.6% 16,116 47.9% 18,116 9.4% 3,568
1992 30.6% 12,949 46.0% 19,439 23.4% 9,877
1988 49.9% 16,149 48.7% 15,752 1.4% 460
1984 58.9% 18,975 40.0% 12,880 1.2% 378
1980 49.0% 14,106 32.5% 9,360 18.5% 5,318
1976 51.3% 14,277 42.8% 11,922 5.9% 1,643
1972 55.6% 15,316 42.3% 11,646 2.1% 565
1968 53.8% 10,533 35.4% 6,936 10.8% 2,114
1964 45.1% 7,825 54.3% 9,416 0.7% 112
1960 66.4% 11,337 33.3% 5,690 0.2% 38
1956 71.9% 11,029 27.9% 4,283 0.3% 39
1952 74.3% 11,095 25.2% 3,765 0.4% 64
1948 64.3% 9,287 33.1% 4,778 2.7% 389
1944 67.5% 8,224 31.9% 3,886 0.7% 79
1940 70.3% 9,146 28.6% 3,727 1.1% 141
1936 62.2% 8,324 37.1% 4,961 0.7% 96
1932 58.7% 7,346 38.6% 4,833 2.7% 342
1928 78.7% 8,887 20.3% 2,297 1.0% 108
1924 75.3% 8,052 18.0% 1,922 6.8% 726
1920 73.2% 6,266 25.7% 2,197 1.1% 94
1916 53.9% 4,975 41.5% 3,834 4.6% 426
1912 21.8% 1,133 36.3% 1,888 41.9% 2,182
1908 60.6% 3,279 37.2% 2,010 2.2% 119
1904 74.3% 3,574 20.6% 989 5.2% 249
1900 58.6% 3,453 39.6% 2,333 1.9% 111
1896 57.4% 3,582 41.2% 2,573 1.4% 85
1892 57.3% 3,114 42.7% 2,320
1888 60.0% 3,189 31.4% 1,669 8.6% 455

The Democratic Party is dominant in Douglas County. Democrats control all County-wide offices in the County, except for the position of Sheriff. Douglas County is currently served by county commissioners Mike Gaughan, Nancy Thellman, and Michelle Derusseau. Gaughan and Thellman are Democrats, while Derusseau is the lone Republican on the commission.

Democratic state representatives of the county include John Wilson (10th District), Barbara Ballard (44th District), and Dennis Highberger (46th District); Republican state representatives include Jim Karleskint (42nd District), Tom Sloan (45th District) and Ken Corbet (54th District). The three state senators representing the county, Marci Francisco (2nd District), Tom Holland (3rd District), and Anthony Hensley (19th District), are all Democrats.[13]

Douglas County has a political history more typical of the Yankee Northeast than of the Great Plains, as can be seen from its voting history (except for 1912) exactly paralleling that of Vermont or Cheshire County, New Hampshire. This is due to the strongly New England heritage of the county, and its status as Kansas' leading academic centre. Douglas County voted for the Republican Party candidate in every Presidential election between 1864 and 1960, except in 1912 when it supported Progressive Theodore Roosevelt. The Republican Presidential nominee obtained over sixty percent of Douglas County's vote in every election between 1920 and 1960 (except 1932 when Herbert Hoover received 58.7 percent), before the anti-Yankee sentiment and Southern leanings of Barry Goldwater drove the county into Lyndon B. Johnson's hands in 1964. With more moderate GOP candidates the party carried the county in every election between 1968 and 1988, before the growing transformation of Lawrence into a liberal academic bastion turned the county solidly Democratic from 1992 onwards and especially since the 2004 election.

Transportation

2005 KDOT Map of Douglas County (map legend)

Major highways

  • Interstate 70, as part of the Kansas Turnpike, runs east to west just north of Lawrence.
  • U.S. Highway 59 runs north to south through the middle of the county and the middle of Lawrence.
  • U.S. Highway 40 virtually follows the Oregon Trail heading west out of Lawrence.
  • U.S. Highway 56 runs east to west in the southern half of the county, going through Baldwin City and skirts the Santa Fe Trail.
  • K-10 runs from the I-70 Lecompton Exchange along the south and west border of Lawrence to US-59 then north until 23rd Street where it heads east out of town into Johnson County.
  • Other major highways include: US-24 which is in Grant township leading from Leavenworth to Jefferson County; K-32 starts just outside Lawrence and leads into Leavenworth County and K-33 is in extreme southeast Douglas County and leads into Franklin County.

County Highways

Douglas County also maintains an extensive network of county highways to serve the rural areas of the county. None of these county highways is in the Lawrence city limits.

Education

Scenic view of Rural Douglas County

Unified school districts

Douglas County is served by seven school districts.

Universities and colleges

The University of Kansas's main campus is located in Lawrence as is Haskell Indian Nations University. Baker University, the state's oldest university, is located in Baldwin City.

Parks

Clinton Lake, completed in 1980, offers boating, fishing and other water sports and various parks surrounding the lake provides camping and trails for mountain biking, hiking and horseback riding.[14]

Lone Star Lake is a small country lake to the southwest of Lawrence offers fishing, boating and camping. Just northwest of Baldwin City is Douglas State Fishing Lake which provides hunting, fishing and limited camping. Other parks around the county include Black Jack Park which includes the Ivan Boyd Prairie Preserve and Robert Hall Pearson Memorial Park, Broken Arrow Park in Lawrence and Wells Overlook Park just south of Lawrence.[15]

Events

Major events in the county include the Maple Leaf Festival in Baldwin City every third full weekend in October.[16]Lecompton's Territorial Days take place every year in June[17] and Lawrence has many parades throughout the year including Christmas and St. Patrick's Day.[18][19]

Communities

Incorporated cities

Unincorporated communities

Townships

Douglas County is divided into nine townships. The city of Lawrence is considered governmentally independent and is excluded from the census figures for the townships. In the following table, the population center is the largest city (or cities) of significant size included in that township's population total.

Township FIPS Population
center
Population Population
density
/km² (/sq mi)
Land area
km² (sq mi)
Water area
km² (sq mi)
Water % Geographic coordinates
Clinton 14325 531 7 (17) 80 (31) 26 (10) 24.41% 38°54?18?N 95°24?20?W / 38.90500°N 95.40556°W / 38.90500; -95.40556
Eudora 21700 Eudora 5,571 43 (113) 128 (49) 2 (1) 1.57% 38°55?42?N 95°6?15?W / 38.92833°N 95.10417°W / 38.92833; -95.10417
Grant 27650 442 10 (27) 43 (16) 0 (0) 0.74% 39°0?8?N 95°13?19?W / 39.00222°N 95.22194°W / 39.00222; -95.22194
Kanwaka 36075 1,317 12 (30) 114 (44) 8 (3) 6.69% 38°57?37?N 95°23?16?W / 38.96028°N 95.38778°W / 38.96028; -95.38778
Lecompton 39175 Lecompton 1,761 20 (51) 90 (35) 2 (1) 2.45% 39°2?31?N 95°24?27?W / 39.04194°N 95.40750°W / 39.04194; -95.40750
Marion 44700 836 5 (12) 185 (72) 1 (0) 0.52% 38°49?4?N 95°24?35?W / 38.81778°N 95.40972°W / 38.81778; -95.40972
Palmyra 54225 Baldwin City 5,760 27 (70) 212 (82) 2 (1) 0.79% 38°47?0?N 95°10?40?W / 38.78333°N 95.17778°W / 38.78333; -95.17778
Wakarusa 74400 2,237 19 (49) 119 (46) 2 (1) 1.81% 38°55?49?N 95°14?43?W / 38.93028°N 95.24528°W / 38.93028; -95.24528
Willow Springs 79500 1,409 10 (26) 141 (54) 1 (0) 0.54% 38°47?23?N 95°18?17?W / 38.78972°N 95.30472°W / 38.78972; -95.30472
Sources: "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files". U.S. Census Bureau, Geography Division. Archived from the original on 2002-08-02. 

Historic Townships

Map of Douglas County, 1889. From History of Kansas.

The county originally had only four townships. Lecompton comprised the area of Lecompton, Kanwaka, and Clinton townships; Washington took the place of Marion and Willow Springs townships; Wakarusa comprised both Wakarusa and Eudora townships; and Calhoun was the original name of Palmyra township. Grant township was annexed from Jefferson County in 1874.

Notable people

  • Isaac F. Hughes, Douglas County commissioner and City Council member in both Lawrence, Kansas, and Los Angeles, California.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on July 9, 2011. Retrieved 2015. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on 2011-05-31. Retrieved . 
  3. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 108. 
  4. ^ Blackmar, Frank Wilson (1912). Kansas: A Cyclopedia of State History, Embracing Events, Institutions, Industries, Counties, Cities, Towns, Prominent Persons, Etc. Standard Publishing Company. p. 539. 
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved . 
  6. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved 2017. 
  7. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved 2014. 
  8. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved 2014. 
  9. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2014. 
  10. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2014. 
  11. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved . 
  12. ^ http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS
  13. ^ Douglas County - State Officials Archived August 14, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-02-15. Retrieved . 
  15. ^ http://douglas-county.org/depts/pw/pw_countyparks.aspx?category_id=[permanent dead link]
  16. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-03-27. Retrieved . 
  17. ^ http://www.lecomptonterritorialdays.com/
  18. ^ http://lawrencestpatricksdayparade.com/
  19. ^ http://www.lawrencechristmasparade.org/

Further reading

County
State

External links

County
Other
Maps

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.


Douglas_County,_Kansas



 

Top US Cities