|Leelanau County, Michigan|
From left to right: Leelanau countryside and Woolsey airport, near the tip of the Leelanau peninsula
Location in the U.S. state of Michigan
Michigan's location in the U.S.
|o Total||2,532 sq mi (6,558 km2)|
|o Land||347 sq mi (899 km2)|
|o Water||2,185 sq mi (5,659 km2), 86%|
|o Density||63/sq mi (24/km2)|
Leelanau County ( LEE-l?-naw) is a county located in the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2010 United States Census, the population was 21,708. The county seat was until recently the unincorporated community of Leland. On 3 August 2004, county voters approved a proposal to move the county seat to Suttons Bay, closer to the county's geographic center. In 2008, the county offices completed their move to a new government center built on 45 acres (180,000 m²) of county-owned land, one mile east of the unincorporated village of Lake Leelanau, where a new county law enforcement center was completed.
Traditionally, the county's name was said to be a Native American word meaning "delight of life", but it is a neologism from Indian agent and ethnographer Henry Schoolcraft, who sometimes gave the name "Leelinau" to Native American women in his tales. He created many faux Indian place names in Michigan, using syllables of Ojibwe, Latin and Arabic. This source contends that the Ojibwas did not use the letter "L".See, List of Michigan county name etymologies.
More recently, however, scholars have established that Leelinau was first used as a pen name by Henry's wife, Jane Johnston Schoolcraft, in writings for The Literary Voyager, a family magazine which they co-wrote in the 1820s. Jane Johnston was of Ojibwa and Scots-Irish descent, and wrote in Ojibwe and English. While her writing was not published formally in her lifetime (except as Schoolcraft appropriated it under his own name), Jane Johnston Schoolcraft has been recognized as "the first Native American literary writer, the first known Indian woman writer, the first known Indian poet, the first known poet to write poems in a Native American language, and the first known American Indian to write out traditional Indian stories. In 2008 Jane Johnston Schoolcraft was inducted into the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame.
The county was set off in 1840, and organized in 1863.
There are 26 wineries on the peninsula. The Leelanau Peninsula sits close to the 45th parallel, a latitude known for growing prestigious grapes. The two Grand Traverse Bays provide the ideal maritime climate and the rich soil does the rest. Northern Michigan specializes in growing white grapes and is known for its rieslings which grow well in the summer months and late fall. The local wineries host an annual harvest fest in October. Some riesling grapes are spared being picked in the fall to be picked when they freeze, from which Ice Wine is made. Wineries in the Leelanau Peninsula AVA include Leelanau Cellars, Silver Leaf Vineyard and Winery, Raftshol Vineyards, Circa Estate Winery, Forty-Five North Vineyard and Winery, Good Harbor Vineyards, Chateau Fontaine, Boskydel Vineyards, Black Star Farms, L. Mawby Vineyards, Ciccone Vineyard and Winery, Willow Vineyards, Chateau de Leelanau Winery and Cidery, Shady Lane Cellars, Cherry Republic Winery, Longview Winery, and Bel Lago Winery.
According to the US Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 2,532 square miles (6,560 km2), of which 347 square miles (900 km2) is land and 2,185 square miles (5,660 km2) (86%) is water. The county is coextensive with the Leelanau Peninsula.
The county has the second-highest proportion of water area of any county in the United States, behind only Keweenaw County, Michigan. Lake Leelanau is the county's largest body of inland water, formed from the Leland River dam near Leland. Glen Lake, located within the boundaries of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, is considered one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. A substantial portion of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore lies within the county's borders, including North Manitou and South Manitou Islands. Leelenau has been party to substantial efforts to protect itself from growth, and to foster a nature conservancy.
Leelanau County has been reliably Republican since its organization. Since 1884, the Republican Party nominee has carried the county vote in 88% (30 of 34) of the national elections through 2016.
Leelanau County operates the County jail, maintains rural roads, operates the major local courts, records deeds, mortgages, and vital records, administers public health regulations, and participates with the state in the provision of social services. The county board of commissioners controls the budget and has limited authority to make laws or ordinances. In Michigan, most local government functions - police and fire, building and zoning, tax assessment, street maintenance etc. - are the responsibility of individual cities and townships.
Leelenau County recently completed construction of a new jail.
(information as of September 2018)
As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 21,119 people, 8,436 households, and 6,217 families residing in the county. The population density was 61 people per square mile (23/km²). There were 13,297 housing units at an average density of 38 per square mile (15/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 93.52% White, 0.25% Black or African American, 3.66% Native American, 0.24% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 1.34% from other races, and 0.97% from two or more races. 3.29% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 23.3% were of German, 11.5% English, 9.9% Polish, 9.0% Irish, 6.0% French and 5.2% American ancestry according to Census 2000. 95.1% spoke English and 2.9% Spanish as their first language.
There were 8,436 households out of which 29.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 63.60% were married couples living together, 7.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.30% were non-families. 22.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 2.89.
The county population contained 24.40% under the age of 18, 5.70% from 18 to 24, 24.20% from 25 to 44, 28.30% from 45 to 64, and 17.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.10 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $47,062, and the median income for a family was $53,228. Males had a median income of $35,719 versus $25,778 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,686. About 3.30% of families and 5.40% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.40% of those under age 18 and 4.50% of those age 65 or over.