|Whitley County, Indiana|
Whitley County courthouse in Columbia City, Indiana
Location in the U.S. state of Indiana
Indiana's location in the U.S.
|Named for||William Whitley|
|Largest city||Columbia City|
|o Total||337.91 sq mi (875 km2)|
|o Land||335.57 sq mi (869 km2)|
|o Water||2.34 sq mi (6 km2), 0.69%|
|o Density||99/sq mi (38/km2)|
|Footnotes: Indiana county number 92|
Whitley County is a rural county located in the U.S. state of Indiana. As of the 2015 census, the population was 33,330. Whitley County is the 49th largest county in Indiana. The county seat is Columbia City. The county has the highest county number (92) on Indiana license plates, as it is alphabetically the last in the state's list of counties.
According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 337.91 square miles (875.2 km2), of which 335.57 square miles (869.1 km2) (or 99.31%) is land and 2.34 square miles (6.1 km2) (or 0.69%) is water.
The first non-Native American settlers arrived in what is now Whitley County in 1835. They arrived as a result of the end of the Black Hawk War as well as the completion of the Erie Canal. They consisted entirely of settlers from New England. These were "Yankee" settlers, that is to say they were descended from the English Puritans who settled New England in the colonial era. They were primarily members of the Congregational Church though due to the Second Great Awakening many of them had converted to Methodism and some had become Baptists before coming to what is now Whitley County. When the New England settlers arrived in what is now Whitley County there was nothing but a dense virgin forest and wild prairie. Whitley County was formed in 1838. It was named for Col. William Whitley, who was killed in the Battle of the Thames in the War of 1812. In the late 1870s immigrants began arriving from Germany and Ireland.
|Columbia City, Indiana|
|Climate chart (explanation)|
In recent years, average temperatures in Columbia City have ranged from a low of 14 °F (-10 °C) in January to a high of 83 °F (28 °C) in July, although a record low of -24 °F (-31 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 103 °F (39 °C) was recorded in June 1988. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 1.80 inches (46 mm) in February to 4.44 inches (113 mm) in June.
County Council: The county council is the legislative branch of the county government and controls all the spending and revenue collection in the county. Representatives are elected from county districts. The council members serve four-year terms. They are responsible for setting salaries, the annual budget, and special spending. The council also has limited authority to impose local taxes, in the form of an income and property tax that is subject to state level approval, excise taxes, and service taxes.
Board of Commissioners: The executive body of the county is made of a board of commissioners. The commissioners are elected county-wide, in staggered terms, and each serves a four-year term. One of the commissioners, typically the most senior, serves as president. The commissioners are charged with executing the acts legislated by the council, collecting revenue, and managing the day-to-day functions of the county government.
Court: The county maintains a small claims court that can handle some civil cases. The judge on the court is elected to a term of four years and must be a member of the Indiana bar. The judge is assisted by a constable who is also elected to a four-year term. In some cases, court decisions can be appealed to the state level circuit court.
County Officials: The county has several other elected offices, including sheriff, coroner, auditor, treasurer, recorder, surveyor, and circuit court clerk. Each of these elected officers serves a term of four years and oversees a different part of county government. Members elected to county government positions are required to declare party affiliations and to be residents of the county.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 33,292 people, 13,001 households, and 9,228 families residing in the county. The population density was 99.2 inhabitants per square mile (38.3/km2). There were 14,281 housing units at an average density of 42.6 per square mile (16.4/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 97.6% white, 0.3% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 0.3% black or African American, 0.4% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.5% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 38.2% were German, 12.6% were Irish, 12.5% were American, and 9.3% were English.
Of the 13,001 households, 32.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.4% were married couples living together, 9.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 29.0% were non-families, and 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 2.99. The median age was 40.1 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $47,697 and the median income for a family was $63,487. Males had a median income of $44,883 versus $30,724 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,644. About 5.1% of families and 6.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.2% of those under age 18 and 7.6% of those age 65 or over.