Columbia County, Pennsylvania
|Columbia County, Pennsylvania|
The Columbia County courthouse in Bloomsburg
Location in the state of Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania's location in the U.S.
|Founded||March 22, 1813|
|Named for||Christopher Columbus|
490 sq mi (1,269 km²)
486 sq mi (1,259 km²)
4 sq mi (10 km²), 0.87%
138/sq mi (53.4/km²)
Columbia County was created on March 22, 1813, from part of Northumberland County and named for Columbia, a poetic name for the United States that alludes to Christopher Columbus. Its county seat is Bloomsburg.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 490 square miles (1,269.1 km2), of which 486 square miles (1,258.7 km2) is land and 4 square miles (10.4 km2) (0.87%) is water. The southern tip of Columbia County is part of the Coal Region. The area of the county from the Susquehanna River south to several miles south of Numidia is mostly farmland and state game lands. Around the Susquehanna River, there are several communities, such as Bloomsburg and Catawissa. From the Susquehanna River north as far as Waller, the county is mostly farmland with several patches of forest. North of Waller, the county is mostly state game lands and mountains.
Adjacent counties 
- Sullivan County (north)
- Luzerne County (east and northeast)
- Schuylkill County (south and southeast)
- Northumberland County (southwest)
- Montour County (west)
- Lycoming County (northwest)
State Park 
|Red Rock Mountain||721 meters|
|Central Mountain||685 meters|
|Chimneystack Rock||684 meters|
|Catawissa Mountain||571 meters|
|Knob Mountain||534 meters|
|Lee Mountain||486 meters|
|McCauley Mountain||479 meters|
|Long Hill||412 meters|
|Bunker Hill||410 meters|
|St. Gabriel Hill||405 meters|
|Bald Hill||403 meters|
As of the census of 2000, there were 64,151 people, 24,915 households, and 16,568 families residing in the county. The population density was 132 people per square mile (51/km²). There were 27,733 housing units at an average density of 57 per square mile (22/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.59% White, 0.80% Black or African-American, 0.15% Native American, 0.52% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.33% from other races, and 0.58% from two or more races. 0.95% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 33.2% were of German, 10.0% American, 9.4% Irish, 8.1% Italian, 6.7% Polish and 6.2% English ancestry according to Census 2000.
There were 24,915 households out of which 27.70% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.80% were married couples living together, 8.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.50% were non-families. 26.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.42 and the average family size was 2.90.
In the county, the population was spread out with 20.80% under the age of 18, 14.30% from 18 to 24, 25.90% from 25 to 44, 23.10% from 45 to 64, and 15.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 90.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.80 males.
Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, townships, and, in at most two cases, towns. The following town, boroughs and townships are located in Columbia County:
Census-designated places 
Census-designated places are geographical areas designated by the U.S. Census Bureau for the purposes of compiling demographic data. They are not actual jurisdictions under Pennsylvania law. Other unincorporated communities, such as villages, may be listed here as well.
Unincorporated Communities 
Colleges and universities 
Public school districts 
- Benton Area School District
- Berwick Area School District (also in Luzerne County)
- Bloomsburg Area School District
- Central Columbia School District
- Millville Area School District
- Mount Carmel Area School District (also in Northumberland County)
- North Schuylkill School District (also in Schuylkill County)
- Southern Columbia Area School District (also in Northumberland County)
Public Vo-Tech schools 
Charter school 
- SusQ Cyber Charter School - Bloomsburg
Private schools 
- Bald Hill School - Millville
- Bloomsburg Christian School - Bloomsburg
- Bloomsburg University Special Education Institute
- Columbia Co Christian Academy - Bloomsburg
- Greenwood Friends School - Millville
- Heritage Christian Academy - Berwick
- Holy Family Consolidate - Berwick
- Keystone National High School - Bloomsburg
- New Story - Berwick
- Pennsylvania Institute For Conservation Education - Bloomsburg
- Rainbow Hill School - Benton
- St Columba School - Bloomsburg
- Saint Matthews - Bloomsburg
- Turkey Ridge School - Bloomsburg
- Bloomsburg Public Library
- Columbia County Traveling Library
- McBride Memorial Library
- Orangeville Public Library
Politics and government 
As of November 2011, there are 41,026 registered voters in Columbia County.
While the county registration tends to be evenly matched between Democrats and Republicans, the county trends Republican in statewide elections. While John McCain received 51.6% of its vote to 47.1% for Barack Obama, this was a far-closer margin than the 20 points that George W. Bush carried it by in 2004. Each of the three row-office statewide winners carried Columbia in 2008. In 2006, Democrat Bob Casey Jr. received 51% of its vote when he unseated incumbent Republican US Senator Rick Santorum and Ed Rendell received 50.6% of the vote against Lynn Swann.
For many years Columbia County was represented in the State House by a conservative Democrat in the 109th district until John Gordner changed parties to Republican in 2001. He was elected to the State Senate in 2003 and succeeded by Republican David R. Millard. Columbia is in the 27th Senate district and 11th Congressional district.
County commissioners 
- David Kovach, Democrat
- Rich Ridgway, Republican
- Chris Young, Republican
Other county officials 
- Chief Clerk, Gail Kipp, Democrat
- Clerk of Courts and Prothonotary, Tami B. Kline, Republican
- Coroner, Lori Masteller, Republican
- Judge, Gary Norton, Republican
- Recorder of Deeds and Register of Wills, Beverly Michael, Democrat
- Sheriff, Tim Chamberlain, Democrat
- Treasurer, Shirley Turner, Republican
Pennsylvania State Senate 
Pennsylvania House of Representatives 
|109||David R. Millard||Republican|
United States House of Representatives 
|11||Lou Barletta||Republican Party|
United States Senate 
See also 
- List of municipal authorities in Columbia County, Pennsylvania
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Columbia County, Pennsylvania
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14.
- "Voter registration statistics archives". Pennsylvania Department of State. 8 November 2011. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
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