List of counties in Washington


There are 39 counties in the US state of Washington Washington came from what was the western part of Washington Territory and was admitted to the Union as the 42nd state in 18891 The first counties were created from unorganized territory in 18452 Eight of the counties were created by Oregon governments prior to the organization of Washington Territory, 26 were created during Washington's territorial period, and five more were created after Washington became a state Benton, Chelan, Grant, Ferry, and Pend Oreille3

Article XI of the Washington State Constitution addresses the organization of counties New counties must have a population of at least 2,000 and no county can be reduced to a population below 4,000 due to partitioning to create a new county4 At least one early county, named Quillehuyte, was disestablished by the territorial government due to low population5 To alter the area of a county, the state constitution requires a petition of the "majority of the voters" in that area A number of county partition proposals in the 1990s interpreted this as a majority of people who voted, until a 1998 ruling by the Washington Supreme Court clarified that they would need a majority of registered voters6

The Federal Information Processing Standard FIPS code, used by the United States government to uniquely identify counties, is provided with each entry The FIPS code links in the table point to U S Census "quick facts" pages for each county

Washington's postal abbreviation is WA and its FIPS state code is 53

Contents

  • 1 List
  • 2 Former county names
  • 3 Former counties
  • 4 Proposed counties
  • 5 Notes
  • 6 References
  • 7 External links

Listedit

County
FIPS County Code
7
County seat
8
Established
8
Origin
2
Etymology
2
Population
8
Area
8
Map
Adams County 001 Ritzville 1883 Whitman County John Adams 1735–1826, 2nd US President 7004187280000000000♠18,728 7003192500000000000♠1,925 sq mi
7003498600000000000♠4,986 km2
Asotin County 003 Asotin 1883 Garfield County The Nez Percé name for Eel Creek 7004216230000000000♠21,623 7002636000000000000♠636 sq mi
7003164700000000000♠1,647 km2
Benton County 005 Prosser 1905 Yakima and Klickitat Counties Thomas Hart Benton 1782–1858, a Missouri US Senator 7005175177000000000♠175,177 7003170300000000000♠1,703 sq mi
7003441100000000000♠4,411 km2
Chelan County 007 Wenatchee 1899 Okanogan and Kittitas Counties A Native American word meaning "deep water", likely referring to Lake Chelan 7004724530000000000♠72,453 7003292200000000000♠2,922 sq mi
7003756800000000000♠7,568 km2
Clallam County 009 Port Angeles 1854 Jefferson County A Klallam word meaning "the strong people" 7004714040000000000♠71,404 7003174500000000000♠1,745 sq mi
7003452000000000000♠4,520 km2
Clark County 011 Vancouver 1845 Original county William Clark 1770–1838, the co-captain of the Lewis and Clark Expedition 7005425363000000000♠425,363 7002628000000000000♠628 sq mi
7003162700000000000♠1,627 km2
Columbia County 013 Dayton 1875 Walla Walla County The Columbia River 7003407800000000000♠4,078 7002869000000000000♠869 sq mi
7003225100000000000♠2,251 km2
Cowlitz County 015 Kelso 1854 Original county Cowlitz, an Indian tribe 7005102410000000000♠102,410 7003113900000000000♠1,139 sq mi
7003295000000000000♠2,950 km2
Douglas County 017 Waterville 1883 Lincoln County Stephen A Douglas 1813–1861, US Senator from Illinois 7004384310000000000♠38,431 7003182100000000000♠1,821 sq mi
7003471600000000000♠4,716 km2
Ferry County 019 Republic 1899 Stevens County Elisha P Ferry 1825–1895, 1st Governor of Washington State 7003755100000000000♠7,551 7003220400000000000♠2,204 sq mi
7003570800000000000♠5,708 km2
Franklin County 021 Pasco 1883 Whitman County Benjamin Franklin 1706–1790, writer, orator, inventor, and US Founding Father 7004781630000000000♠78,163 7003124200000000000♠1,242 sq mi
7003321700000000000♠3,217 km2
Garfield County 023 Pomeroy 1881 Columbia County James A Garfield 1831–1881, 20th US President 7003226600000000000♠2,266 7002710000000000000♠710 sq mi
7003183900000000000♠1,839 km2
Grant County 025 Ephrata 1909 Douglas County Ulysses S Grant 1822–1885, 18th US President 7004891200000000000♠89,120 7003268100000000000♠2,681 sq mi
7003694400000000000♠6,944 km2
Grays Harbor County 027 Montesano 1854 Thurston County Grays Harbor, a body of water named after explorer and merchant Robert Gray 1755–1806 7004727970000000000♠72,797 7003191700000000000♠1,917 sq mi
7003496500000000000♠4,965 km2
Island County 029 Coupeville 1853 Thurston County Whidbey and Camano Islands 7004785060000000000♠78,506 7002209000000000000♠209 sq mi
7002541000000000000♠541 km2
Jefferson County 031 Port Townsend 1852 Thurston County Thomas Jefferson 1743–1826, 3rd US President and principal author of the Declaration of Independence 7004298720000000000♠29,872 7003180900000000000♠1,809 sq mi
7003468500000000000♠4,685 km2
King County 033 Seattle 1852 Thurston County William R King 1786–1853, US Vice President under Franklin Pierce; officially renamed in 1986 after Martin Luther King, Jr 1929–1968 7006193124900000000♠1,931,249 7003212600000000000♠2,126 sq mi
7003550600000000000♠5,506 km2
Kitsap County 035 Port Orchard 1857 King and Jefferson Counties Chief Kitsap d 1860, leader of the Suquamish tribe 7005251133000000000♠251,133 7002396000000000000♠396 sq mi
7003102600000000000♠1,026 km2
Kittitas County 037 Ellensburg 1883 Yakima County Kittitas tribe word of uncertain meaning, with popular translations ranging from "white chalk" to "land of the plenty" 7004409150000000000♠40,915 7003229700000000000♠2,297 sq mi
7003594900000000000♠5,949 km2
Klickitat County 039 Goldendale 1859 Walla Walla County Klickitat Tribe 7004203180000000000♠20,318 7003187200000000000♠1,872 sq mi
7003484800000000000♠4,848 km2
Lewis County 041 Chehalis 1845 Original county Meriwether Lewis 1774–1809, the co-captain of the Lewis and Clark Expedition 7004754550000000000♠75,455 7003240800000000000♠2,408 sq mi
7003623700000000000♠6,237 km2
Lincoln County 043 Davenport 1883 Whitman County Abraham Lincoln 1809–1865, 16th US President 7004105700000000000♠10,570 7003231100000000000♠2,311 sq mi
7003598500000000000♠5,985 km2
Mason County 045 Shelton 1854 King County Charles H Mason 1830–1859, 1st Secretary of Washington Territory 7004606990000000000♠60,699 7002961000000000000♠961 sq mi
7003248900000000000♠2,489 km2
Okanogan County 047 Okanogan 1888 Stevens County A Salish Native American word meaning "rendezvous" 7004411200000000000♠41,120 7003526800000000000♠5,268 sq mi
7004136440000000000♠13,644 km2
Pacific County 049 South Bend 1851 Lewis County The Pacific Ocean 7004209200000000000♠20,920 7002975000000000000♠975 sq mi
7003252500000000000♠2,525 km2
Pend Oreille County 051 Newport 1911 Stevens County The Pend d'Oreille Native American tribe 7004130010000000000♠13,001 7003140000000000000♠1,400 sq mi
7003362600000000000♠3,626 km2
Pierce County 053 Tacoma 1852 Thurston County Franklin Pierce 1804–1869, 14th US President 7005795225000000000♠795,225 7003167600000000000♠1,676 sq mi
7003434100000000000♠4,341 km2
San Juan County 055 Friday Harbor 1873 Whatcom County San Juan Island 7004157690000000000♠15,769 7002175000000000000♠175 sq mi
7002453000000000000♠453 km2
Skagit County 057 Mount Vernon 1883 Whatcom County The Skagit Native American tribe 7005116901000000000♠116,901 7003173500000000000♠1,735 sq mi
7003449400000000000♠4,494 km2
Skamania County 059 Stevenson 1854 Clark County A Chinookan word meaning "swift water" 7004110660000000000♠11,066 7003165600000000000♠1,656 sq mi
7003428900000000000♠4,289 km2
Snohomish County 061 Everett 1861 Island County The Snohomish tribe 7005713335000000000♠713,335 7003209000000000000♠2,090 sq mi
7003541300000000000♠5,413 km2
Spokane County 063 Spokane 1879 a Stevens County The Spokane Native American tribe 7005471221000000000♠471,221 7003176400000000000♠1,764 sq mi
7003456900000000000♠4,569 km2
Stevens County 065 Colville 1863 Walla Walla County Isaac Stevens 1818–1862, 1st Governor of the Washington Territory 7004435310000000000♠43,531 7003247800000000000♠2,478 sq mi
7003641800000000000♠6,418 km2
Thurston County 067 Olympia 1852 Lewis County Samuel Thurston 1815–1851, the Oregon Territory's first delegate to US Congress 7005252264000000000♠252,264 7002727000000000000♠727 sq mi
7003188300000000000♠1,883 km2
Wahkiakum County 069 Cathlamet 1854 Cowlitz County Leader of Wahkiakum "Tall Timber", Native American tribe 7003397800000000000♠3,978 7002264000000000000♠264 sq mi
7002684000000000000♠684 km2
Walla Walla County 071 Walla Walla 1854 Skamania County The Walla Walla Native American tribe, and also another name for running water 7004587810000000000♠58,781 7003127000000000000♠1,270 sq mi
7003328900000000000♠3,289 km2
Whatcom County 073 Bellingham 1854 Island County Nooksack word meaning "noisy water" 7005201140000000000♠201,140 7003212000000000000♠2,120 sq mi
7003549100000000000♠5,491 km2
Whitman County 075 Colfax 1871 Stevens County Marcus Whitman 1802–1847, a Methodist missionary 7004447760000000000♠44,776 7003215900000000000♠2,159 sq mi
7003559200000000000♠5,592 km2
Yakima County 077 Yakima 1865 Ferguson County defunct The Yakama Native American tribe 7005243231000000000♠243,231 7003429600000000000♠4,296 sq mi
7004111270000000000♠11,127 km2

Former county namesedit

  • Chehalis County, originally named for the Chehalis people, was renamed Grays Harbor County in 1915910
  • Sawamish County, originally named for the Sahewamish Native American tribe, was renamed Mason County in 186411
  • Slaughter County, originally named for Lieutenant William A Slaughter who was killed during the Indian Wars, was renamed Kitsap County shortly after its formation in 185712 The initial proposals for this county called it Madison County or Kitsap County13
  • Vancouver County, originally named for George Vancouver, was renamed Clark County in 18491415

Former countiesedit

  • Ferguson County, named for Washington legislator James L Ferguson, was established on January 23, 1863 from Walla Walla County and dissolved on January 18, 1865 Yakima County was established in its place1617
  • Quillehuyte County was split from Jefferson and Clallam counties in 1868 and returned to those counties a year later5

Proposed countiesedit

See also: List of US county secession proposals: Washington
  • The representatives at the Cowlitz Convention of 1851 discussed a proposal to form Columbia Territory, which included a number of new counties in what later became Washington The next session of the Oregon Territorial Legislature created only one of counties: Thurston County which was originally proposed as Simmons County1819
  • Buchanan County was proposed in 1856 as a division of Clark County20
  • Other proposed counties during Washington's statehood have included with proposal dates: Big Bend 1891, Palouse 1891 and 1903, Sherman 1891, Washington 1891, McKinley 1903, Steptoe 1903, Coulee 190521

Notesedit

  • ^a A first attempt to organize Spokane County in 1858 failed It was re-organized in 1859 but then annexed into Stevens County in 1864 before finally reappearing in 187922

Referencesedit

  1. ^ "Historical Timeline of Events Leading to the formation of Washington State" Retrieved 2008-08-09 
  2. ^ Smith 1913, p 1 As noted on p 15, Pend Oreille County was not included in this tally because it was organized after the article was first published in 1909
  3. ^ Article XI, Section 3 "New Counties" of the Washington State Constitution
  4. ^ a b Smith 1913, p 11
  5. ^ Hal Spencer February 6, 1998 "New counties dealt major blow" The Spokesman-Review AP p B8 
    "Cedar County Committee v Munro No 64958-8" FindLaw February 5, 1998 
  6. ^ "EPA County FIPS Code Listing" US Environmental Protection Agency Retrieved 2008-05-06 
  7. ^ a b c d National Association of Counties "NACo - Find A County" Retrieved 2011-03-04 
  8. ^ Ott, Jen July 1, 2008 "Chehalis -- Thumbnail History" HistoryLinkorg Retrieved 2012-09-26 
  9. ^ "Chapter 77 SB 297, Changing Name of Chehalis County" Session Laws of the State of Washington 1915 p 250 
  10. ^ Wilma, David April 19, 2006 "Washington Territorial Legislature creates Sawamish Mason County on April 15, 1854" HistoryLinkorg Retrieved 2012-03-05 
  11. ^ Wilma, David July 27, 2006 "Slaughter County is renamed Kitsap County on July 13, 1857" HistoryLinkorg Retrieved 2012-03-16 
  12. ^ Smith 1913, pp 7–8
  13. ^ Smith 1913, pp 1–2
  14. ^ Holman 1910, pp 3–5
  15. ^ Becker, Paula September 20, 2005 "Ferguson County is established on January 23, 1863" HistoryLinkorg Retrieved 2012-03-05 
  16. ^ "Milestones for Washington State History -- Part 2: 1851 to 1900" HistoryLinkorg March 6, 2003 Retrieved 2012-03-05 
  17. ^ Smith 1913, pp 3–4
  18. ^ Meany 1922, pp 11–12
  19. ^ Smith 1913, p 7
  20. ^ Smith 1913, pp 13–14
  21. ^ Smith 1913, p 9

Works

  • Holman, Frederick V March 1910 "History of the Counties of Oregon" Oregon Historical Quarterly Portland, Oregon: Ivy Press XI
  • Meany, Edmond S January 1922 "The Cowlitz Convention: Inception of Washington Territory" The Washington Historical Quarterly Seattle, Washington: University of Washington XIII
  • Smith, Charles W October 1913 1909, The Naming of Counties in the State of Washington, Seattle, Washington: University of Washington 

External linksedit

  • Washington State and County Maps and Atlases, includes a step-by-step map showing the evolution of the counties


List of counties in Washington Information about


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