Grays Harbor County is a county in the U.S. state of Washington. As of the 2010 census, the population was 72,797. The county seat is Montesano, and its largest city is Aberdeen. The county is named after a large estuarine bay near its southwestern corner. On May 7, 1792, Boston fur trader Robert Gray crossed the bar into the bay he called Bullfinch Harbor, but which later cartographers would label Chehalis Bay, and then Grays Harbor.
The county, originally named Chehalis County, was formed out of Thurston County on April 14, 1854. Its name was subsequently changed to Grays Harbor County by the Washington legislature, effective June 9, 1915. The name change helped eliminate confusion resulting from the fact that the city named Chehalis was in Lewis County.
Grays Harbor County comprises the Aberdeen, WA Micropolitan Statistical Area.
|Grays Harbor County, Washington|
Grays Harbor County Courthouse
Location in the U.S. state of Washington
Washington's location in the U.S.
|Founded||April 14, 1854|
|Named for||Grays Harbor|
|• Total||2,224 sq mi (5,760 km2)|
|• Land||1,902 sq mi (4,926 km2)|
|• Water||322 sq mi (834 km2), 14%|
|• Density||37/sq mi (14/km2)|
|Time zone||Pacific: UTC−8/−7|
|U.S. Decennial Census
As of the census of 2000, there were 67,194 people, 26,808 households, and 17,907 families residing in the county. The population density was 35 people per square mile (14/km²). There were 32,489 housing units at an average density of 17 per square mile (7/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 88.30% White, 0.34% Black or African American, 4.66% Native American, 1.22% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 2.27% from other races, and 3.10% from two or more races. 4.85% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 16.3% were of German, 11.9% United States or American, 9.9% English, 9.2% Irish, and 6.1% Norwegian ancestry. 94.1% spoke English and 3.9% Spanish as their first language.
There were 26,808 households out of which 30.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.70% were married couples living together, 11.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.20% were non-families. 26.70% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.60% 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 2.98.
In the county, the population was spread out with 25.70% under the age of 18, 7.90% from 18 to 24, 26.00% from 25 to 44, 25.00% from 45 to 64, and 15.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 98.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.20 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $34,160, and the median income for a family was $39,709. Males had a median income of $35,947 versus $24,262 for females. The per capita income for the county was $16,799. 16.10% of the population and 11.90% of families were below the poverty line. 21.60% of those under the age of 18 and 9. 40% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 72,797 people, 28,579 households, and 18,493 families residing in the county. The population density was 38.3 inhabitants per square mile (14.8/km2). There were 35,166 housing units at an average density of 18.5 per square mile (7.1/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 84.9% white, 4.6% American Indian, 1.4% Asian, 1.1% black or African American, 0.3% Pacific islander, 3.9% from other races, and 3.9% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 8.6% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 21.0% were German, 13.5% were Irish, 11.7% were English, 6.8% were Norwegian, and 4.2% were American.
Of the 28,579 households, 28.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.8% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, 35.3% were non-families, and 27.6% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.45 and the average family size was 2.94. The median age was 41.9 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $41,899 and the median income for a family was $49,745. Males had a median income of $42,998 versus $34,183 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,656. About 11.7% of families and 16.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 23.1% of those under age 18 and 7.9% of those age 65 or over.
Grays Harbor County was one of the most consistently Democratic in the nation. Until 2016, the last Republican Presidential candidate to carry the county was Herbert Hoover in 1928 and the last Republican gubernatorial candidate to carry the county was Daniel J. Evans in 1964. However, Donald Trump carried the county in the 2016 Presidential Election.
In the United States House of Representatives Grays Harbor is part of Washington's 6th congressional district, which has a Cook Partisan Voting Index of D+5 and is represented by Derek Kilmer. In the Washington State Legislature it lies in the 19th, 24th, and 35th districts. In the Washington State Senate it is represented by Brian Hatfield, James Hargrove, and Tim Sheldon. In the Washington House of Representatives it is represented by Brian Blake, Fred Finn, Kathy Haig, Lynn Kessler, Dean Takko, and Kevin Van De Wege. All of these politicians are of the Democratic Party.
The principal economic activities are