FLATHEAD County, MT
Flathead County is in the U.S. state of Montana. At the 2020 United States Census, its population was 104,357, making it the state's fourth most populous county. Its county seat is Kalispell. Its numerical designation (used in the issuance of license plates) is 7. Its northern border is on the state's north border, making it contiguous with the Canada–US border, facing British Columbia.
Flathead County comprises the Kalispell, Montana Micropolitan Statistical Area, with neighboring Lake County following soon after.
Flathead County was founded in 1893. Some sources cite the supposed practice of the Salish tribe flattening infants' heads as the origin of the name Flathead, but there is no record of Salish Indians ever having that appearance.
The county includes much of Flathead Lake, the Flathead Valley, and the Flathead River. These natural treasures, originated by glaciers, are named for the unique geological formation of a broad flat valley surrounded by mountains at the head of a deep glacial lake. Several tribes have long used the Flathead Lake, and the Bitterroot Salish, Kootenai, and Pend d'Oreilles tribes are represented on the Flathead Reservation. The western part of Glacier National Park is located in the county.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of , of which is land and (3.2%) is water. It is the third-largest county in Montana by land area and second-largest by total area.
Wildlife includes bobcats, black bears, coyotes, deer, elk, grizzly bears, lynx, mountain lions, and wolves.
National protected areas
As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 74,471 people, 29,588 households, and 20,415 families living in the county. The population density was 15 people per square mile (6/km2). There were 34,773 housing units at an average density of 7 per square mile (3/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 96.26% White, 0.15% Black or African American, 1.15% Native American, 0.46% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.41% from other races, and 1.50% from two or more races. 1.42% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 21.7% were of German, 11.3% Irish, 11.0% Norwegian, 10.3% English and 9.1% United States or American ancestry.
There were 29,588 households, out of which 32.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.90% were married couples living together, 8.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.00% were non-families. 25.20% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.90% 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 2.97.
The county population contained 25.90% under 18, 7.40% from 18 to 24, 27.40% from 25 to 44, 26.40% from 45 to 64, and 13.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.10 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $34,466, and the median income for a family was $40,702. Males had a median income of $31,908 versus $20,619 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,112. About 9.40% of families and 13.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.70% of those under age 18 and 8.60% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 90,928 people, 37,504 households, and 24,817 families living in the county. The population density was . There were 46,963 housing units at an average density of . The racial makeup of the county was 95.5% white, 1.1% American Indian, 0.6% Asian, 0.2% black or African American, 0.1% Pacific islander, 0.4% from other races, and 2.1% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 2.3% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 28.1% were German, 15.0% were English, 14.8% were Irish, 9.3% were Norwegian, and 4.6% were American.
Of the 37,504 households, 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.8% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.8% were non-families, and 27.2% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.40, and the average family size was 2.91. The median age was 41.2 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $44,998, and the median income for a family was $53,940. Males had a median income of $39,767 versus $28,026 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,721. About 8.4% of families and 11.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.8% of those under age 18 and 7.7% of those age 65 or over.
Along with Yellowstone County (home to Billings), Flathead County is one of Montana's more populous counties that leans heavily Republican. It has last voted Democratic in 1964, and has voted over 60% Republican in every presidential election since 1996 save 2008.
Other unincorporated communities
In popular culture
Miami Herald columnist Dave Barry frequently cites the police blotter of the Flathead Beacon in Flathead County as a source of humorous material. It is written in a spare, surrealist style by local man Justin Franz, following the pattern set by earlier writer Christie Burns.
This page uses material from the Wikipedia article Flathead County, MT, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 4.0.