Carver County, Minnesota

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Carver County
Carver County Sheriff's Office and Justice Center in Chaska, Minnesota
Carver County Sheriff's Office and Justice Center in Chaska, Minnesota
Map of Minnesota highlighting Carver County
Location within the U.S. state of Minnesota
Map of the United States highlighting Minnesota
Minnesota's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 44°49′N 93°48′W / 44.82°N 93.8°W / 44.82; -93.8
Country United States
State Minnesota
FoundedFebruary 20, 1855[1]
Named forJonathan Carver
SeatChaska
Largest cityChaska
Area
 • Total376 sq mi (970 km2)
 • Land354 sq mi (920 km2)
 • Water22 sq mi (60 km2)  5.8%%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total106,922
 • Estimate 
(2021)
108,626 Increase
 • Density302/sq mi (117/km2)
Time zoneUTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional districts3rd, 6th
Websitewww.co.carver.mn.us

Carver County is a county in the U.S. state of Minnesota. The county is mostly farmland and wilderness with many unincorporated townships.[2] As of the 2020 census, the population was 106,922.[3] Its county seat is Chaska.[4] Carver County is named for explorer Jonathan Carver, who in 1766–67, traveled from Boston to the Minnesota River and wintered among the Sioux near the site of New Ulm.[5] Carver County is part of the Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Statistics[edit]

In 2017, Carver County was ranked by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as the healthiest county in the State of Minnesota for the fifth year in a row.[6][7][8][9][10][11] The foundation explained health outcomes represent “how healthy counties are within the state,” whereas health factors represent “an estimate of the future health of counties as compared with other counties within a state,” based on health behaviors, clinical care, and other environmental factors.[11] Carver County continued to rank as the number one healthiest county throughout the state for 2018,[12] 2019,[13] and 2020.[14]

In 2018, Carver County was ranked as the #1 "Happiest Place in America" according to a study conducted by the data firm Smart Asset.[15] Carver County was one of three United States counties to receive a top 5 ranking for the third straight year.[15] The other two counties were Loudoun and Fairfax counties in Virginia.[15] The study compared counties across the country using the following eight factors: unemployment rate, poverty rate, affordability ratio, marriage rate, divorce rate, bankruptcy rate, life expectancy, and physical activity rate.[15] In particular, Carver County scored well thanks to strong economic conditions with an unemployment rate of only 3.1% and a poverty rate of only 4.1%.[15] Additionally, according to the data, 62% of residents were married and only 8% divorced.[15] In each of those metrics, Carver ranked in the top 40 in the country.[15]

Geography[edit]

The Minnesota River flows east-northeasterly along the county's southern border. The South Fork of the Crow River flows northeasterly through the upper western and central portions of the county. Carver Creek flows southeasterly from the county's central area, discharging into the Minnesota at the county's southern border. The terrain consists of low rolling hills, dotted with lakes in the eastern portion. The area is devoted to agriculture.[2]

Soils of Carver County[16]

The terrain slopes to the east and south, with its northwest corner at 1,024' (312m) ASL.[17] A small hill 1.6 miles (2.6 km) northeast of Miller Lake[2] rises to 1,080' (329m) ASL, for the county's highest point.[18]

The county has a total area of 376 square miles (970 km2), of which 354 square miles (920 km2) is land and 22 square miles (57 km2) (5.8%) is water.[19] It is Minnesota's second-smallest county by land area and third-smallest by total area.

Carver is one of seven southern Minnesota counties with no forest soils; only prairie ecosystems of savannas and prairies can be found in Carver County. It is also one of 17 Minnesota counties where savanna soils dominate.

Lakes[edit]

Carver County is home to seven lakes of 235 acres or larger. The largest is Lake Waconia, Minnesota's 73rd largest lake and the Twin Cities' second largest lake, with an area of 2,996 acres.[20]

Lake Waconia
Township Lakes
Benton Township Barlous Lake, Benton Lake, Maria Lake, Meuwissen Lake, Myers Lake, Rice Lake, Winkler Lake
Camden Township Berliner Lake, Eagle Lake, Smith Lake
Dahlgren Township Aue Lake
Hancock Township Assumption Lake, Gaystock Lake, Maria Lake, Miller Lake,
Hollywood Township Lippert Lake
Laketown Township Carl Krey Lake, Lake Auburn, Lake Virginia, Lake Waconia, Lake Zumbra, Lunsten Lake, Marsh Lake, Parley Lake, Piersons Lake, Reitz Lake, Schutz Lake, Stieger Lake, Sunny Lake, Turbid Lake, Wasserman Lake, Lake Bavaria
San Francisco Township Hallquist Lake, Kelly Lake, Long Lake, Scott Lake,
Waconia Township Burandt Lake, Donders Lake, Goose Lake, Hydes Lake, Lake Minnewashta, Lake Patterson, Lake Waconia, Rutz Lake, Swan Lake
Watertown Township Buck Lake, Goose Lake, Lippert Lake, Mud Lake, Oak Lake, Swede Lake
Young America Township Barnes Lake, Brand Lake, Braunworth Lake, Tiger Lake, Young America Lake

Major highways[edit]

Soils of the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum area

Adjacent counties[edit]

Protected areas[edit]

  • Assumption State Wildlife Management Area
  • Carver Park Preserve
  • Gravel Pit State Wildlife Management Area
  • Lake Minnewashta Regional Park
  • Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
  • Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge (part)
  • Minnesota Valley State Recreation Area (part)
  • Waconia State Wildlife Management Area

[2]

Climate and weather[edit]

In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Chaska have ranged from a low of 4 °F (−16 °C) in January to a high of 81 °F (27 °C) in July, although a record low of −41 °F (−41 °C) was recorded in January 1970 and a record high of 105 °F (41 °C) was recorded in July 1988. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 0.66 inches (17 mm) in February to 5.05 inches (128 mm) in August.[21]

Climate chart for Carver County, Minnesota
Chaska, Minnesota
Climate chart (explanation)
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
 
 
0.7
 
 
22
4
 
 
0.7
 
 
28
9
 
 
1.7
 
 
40
21
 
 
2.5
 
 
57
34
 
 
3.7
 
 
69
46
 
 
4.6
 
 
78
56
 
 
3.5
 
 
81
60
 
 
5.1
 
 
78
58
 
 
3.4
 
 
71
49
 
 
2.5
 
 
58
36
 
 
1.6
 
 
41
23
 
 
1
 
 
26
8
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: The Weather Channel[21]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
18605,106
187011,586126.9%
188014,14022.0%
189016,53216.9%
190017,5446.1%
191017,455−0.5%
192016,946−2.9%
193016,936−0.1%
194017,6064.0%
195018,1553.1%
196021,35817.6%
197028,33132.6%
198037,04630.8%
199047,91529.3%
200070,20546.5%
201091,04229.7%
2020106,92217.4%
2021 (est.)108,626[22]1.6%
U.S. Decennial Census[23]
1790–1960[24] 1900–1990[25]
1990–2000[26] 2010–2020[27]
Age pyramid of county residents based on 2000 U.S. census data

2020 census[edit]

Carver County, Minnesota - Demographic Profile
(NH = Non-Hispanic)
Race / Ethnicity Pop 2010[28] Pop 2020[29] % 2010 % 2020
White alone (NH) 82,536 91,443 90.67% 85.52%
Black or African American alone (NH) 1,068 2,173 1.12% 2.03%
Native American or Alaska Native alone (NH) 186 193 0.20% 0.18%
Asian alone (NH) 2,456 3,617 2.70% 3.38%
Pacific Islander alone (NH) 9 15 0.01% 0.01%
Some Other Race alone (NH) 69 284 0.76% 0.27%
Mixed Race/Multi-Racial (NH) 1,203 3,889 1.32% 3.64%
Hispanic or Latino (any race) 3,515 5,308 3.86% 4.96%
Total 91,042 106,922 100.00% 100.00%

Note: the US Census treats Hispanic/Latino as an ethnic category. This table excludes Latinos from the racial categories and assigns them to a separate category. Hispanics/Latinos can be of any race.

2010[edit]

The ethnic makeup of the county, according to the 2010 census, was the following:

There were 33,486 households, out of which 42.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.9% were married couples living together, 7.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.9% were non-families. 21.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.74 and the average family size was 3.22.

The median income for a household in the county was $83,773, and the median income for a family was $96,913. Males had a median income of $66,150 versus $46,696 for females. The per capita income for the county was $37,457. About 3.3% of families and 4.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.5% of those under age 18 and 7.8% of those age 65 or over.[30]

2000[edit]

As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 70,205 people, 24,356 households, and 18,778 families in the county. The population density was 198/sqmi (76.6/km2). There were 24,883 housing units at an average density of 70.3/sqmi (27.1/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 95.95% White, 0.59% Black or African American, 0.18% Native American, 1.56% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.87% from other races, and 0.82% from two or more races. 2.55% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 44.3% were of German, 12.1% Norwegian, 7.1% Irish and 6.2% Swedish ancestry.

There were 24,356 households, out of which 45.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 66.40% were married couples living together, 7.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.90% were non-families. 18.10% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.84 and the average family size was 3.26.

The county population contained 31.50% under the age of 18, 6.90% from 18 to 24, 34.70% from 25 to 44, 19.50% from 45 to 64, and 7.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 100.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $65,540, and the median income for a family was $73,577 (these figures had risen to $78,035 and $89,100 respectively as of a 2007 estimate). Males had a median income of $47,271 versus $32,107 for females. The per capita income for the county was $28,486. About 2.30% of families and 3.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.60% of those under age 18 and 6.90% of those age 65 or over.

Government and politics[edit]

Government[edit]

Like all counties in Minnesota, Carver is governed by an elected and nonpartisan board of commissioners. Each commissioner represents a district of approximately equal population.

County commissioners[edit]

The county commission elects a chair, who presides at meetings. Commissioners as of January 2020:[31]

District Commissioner In office since Next election Area served
1st Gayle O. Degler (Vice Chair)[32] 2002 2022 Chaska, Chanhassen
2nd Tom Workman[33] 2002 2022 Chanhassen, Victoria
3rd Matt Udermann[34][35] 2020 2024 Chaska, Victoria
4th Tim Lynch (Chairperson)[36] 2004 2022 Hollywood Twp, Watertown Twp, Waconia Twp, Mayer, Waconia, Watertown
5th John P. Fahey[35][37] 2020 2024 Benton Twp, Camden Twp, Dalgren Twp, Hancock Twp, Laketown Twp, San Francisco Twp, Young America Twp, Carver, Cologne, Hamburg, New Germany, Norwood Young America

Politics[edit]

As Carver County becomes more suburban and less rural in character, with 90% of its residents now living in its cities, it is becoming more of a battleground territory, especially in the eastern half of the county and in its two largest cities, Chaska and Chanhassen. Traditionally, the county has tended to vote for Republicans. Since World War II, the county has never voted for a Democratic candidate for president. The last time Carver County voted for a Democrat was in 1932, Franklin D. Roosevelt's landslide win against incumbent Herbert Hoover,[38] and the only other occurrence since 1896 was Woodrow Wilson in 1912, when the Republicans were bitterly divided. As a measure of how Republican the county has been over the years, it was one of only four counties in the entire state to support Barry Goldwater in 1964 over Lyndon Johnson. This is one of only five times since 1932 that a Democrat has managed 40 percent of the county's vote.

Carver's Republican bent is not limited to presidential elections. The county regularly rejects Democrats in gubernatorial races as well. Since 1944, the only time Carver County voted for a non-Republican candidate in a gubernatorial race was in 1998, Jesse Ventura’s third-party upset.[39]

Carver County is split between two congressional districts. The eastern area, adjacent to Hennepin County and Scott County and including Chaska and Chanhassen, is in Minnesota's 3rd congressional district (CPVI D+6); the remainder of the county is in Minnesota's 6th congressional district (CPVI R+12).

United States presidential election results for Carver County, Minnesota[40][41]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 34,009 51.25% 30,774 46.37% 1,578 2.38%
2016 29,056 52.17% 21,508 38.62% 5,132 9.21%
2012 31,155 58.90% 20,745 39.22% 999 1.89%
2008 28,156 56.67% 20,654 41.57% 873 1.76%
2004 28,510 62.78% 16,456 36.24% 445 0.98%
2000 20,790 59.36% 12,462 35.58% 1,769 5.05%
1996 12,380 43.95% 11,554 41.02% 4,234 15.03%
1992 10,201 38.34% 8,349 31.38% 8,054 30.27%
1988 12,560 59.17% 8,439 39.75% 229 1.08%
1984 11,963 63.60% 6,725 35.75% 121 0.64%
1980 9,909 53.62% 6,621 35.83% 1,951 10.56%
1976 8,199 50.16% 7,574 46.33% 574 3.51%
1972 8,546 61.46% 4,852 34.89% 507 3.65%
1968 6,649 56.44% 4,590 38.96% 541 4.59%
1964 5,424 51.37% 5,123 48.52% 11 0.10%
1960 6,231 60.93% 3,982 38.94% 14 0.14%
1956 6,226 72.49% 2,334 27.17% 29 0.34%
1952 6,674 75.43% 2,159 24.40% 15 0.17%
1948 4,582 61.24% 2,816 37.64% 84 1.12%
1944 5,823 78.40% 1,565 21.07% 39 0.53%
1940 6,528 78.62% 1,753 21.11% 22 0.26%
1936 3,095 42.44% 2,814 38.59% 1,383 18.97%
1932 2,508 36.34% 4,328 62.71% 66 0.96%
1928 3,983 57.72% 2,885 41.81% 33 0.48%
1924 2,214 40.20% 358 6.50% 2,936 53.30%
1920 5,073 87.31% 562 9.67% 175 3.01%
1916 1,950 65.57% 960 32.28% 64 2.15%
1912 742 26.86% 1,008 36.50% 1,012 36.64%
1908 1,739 60.03% 1,101 38.00% 57 1.97%
1904 1,735 70.44% 672 27.28% 56 2.27%
1900 1,775 59.54% 1,146 38.44% 60 2.01%
1896 1,856 58.25% 1,268 39.80% 62 1.95%
1892 1,191 40.35% 1,462 49.53% 299 10.13%


State Legislature (2018–2020)
Position Name Affiliation District
  Senate David Osmek[42] Republican District 33
  Senate Scott Jensen[43] Republican District 47
  House of Representatives Kelly Morrison[44] Democrat District 33B
  House of Representatives Jim Nash[45] Republican District 47A
  House of Representatives Greg Boe[46] Republican District 47B
U.S Congress (2018–2020)
Position Name Affiliation District
  House of Representatives Dean Phillips[47] Democrat 3rd
  House of Representatives Tom Emmer[48] Republican 6th
  Senate Amy Klobuchar[49] Democrat N/A
  Senate Tina Smith[50] Democrat N/A

Communities[edit]

Cities[edit]

Unincorporated communities[edit]

[2]

Townships[edit]

Notable residents[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Minnesota Place Names". Minnesota Historical Society. Archived from the original on June 20, 2012. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e Carver County MN Google Maps (accessed 6 March 2019)
  3. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Carver County, Minnesota". www.census.gov. United States Census Bureau. Retrieved March 30, 2022.
  4. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  5. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 70.
  6. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2017. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  7. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2016. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  8. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2015. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  9. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2014. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  10. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2013. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  11. ^ a b Raddatz, Kate (March 29, 2017). "Carver County Ranked As Minnesota's Healthiest". CBS Local. CBS Minnesota. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  12. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2018. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  13. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2019. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  14. ^ "Minnesota Health Outcomes - Overall Rank". County Health Rankings & Roadmaps. County Health Rankings. 2020. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g Miller, Derek (June 12, 2018). "The Happiest Places in America – 2018 Edition". Smart Asset. Smart Asset. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  16. ^ Nelson, Steven (2011). Savanna Soils of Minnesota. Minnesota: Self. pp. 49–52. ISBN 978-0-615-50320-2.
  17. ^ ""Find an Altitude/Carver County MN" Google Maps (accessed March 6, 2019)". Archived from the original on May 21, 2019. Retrieved March 6, 2019.
  18. ^ Carver County High Point, Minnesota. PeakBagger.com (accessed May 5, 2019)
  19. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  20. ^ "Fisheries Lake Surveys – MN Dept of Natural Resources". www.dnr.state.mn.us. Retrieved April 17, 2018.
  21. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Chaska MN". The Weather Channel. Retrieved November 6, 2011.
  22. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Counties: April 1, 2020 to July 1, 2021". Retrieved March 30, 2022.
  23. ^ "US Decennial Census". US Census Bureau. Archived from the original on April 12, 2013. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  24. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  25. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". US Census Bureau. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  26. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). US Census Bureau. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  27. ^ "2020 Population and Housing State Data". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 12, 2021.
  28. ^ "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2010: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Carver County, Minnesota". United States Census Bureau.
  29. ^ "P2 HISPANIC OR LATINO, AND NOT HISPANIC OR LATINO BY RACE - 2020: DEC Redistricting Data (PL 94-171) - Carver County, Minnesota". United States Census Bureau.
  30. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved December 8, 2018.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  31. ^ "County Board of Commissioners". Carver County, MN. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  32. ^ "Gayle Degler, Vice Chair (District 1)". Carver County, MN. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  33. ^ "Tom Workman (District 2)". Carver County, MN. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  34. ^ "Matt Udermann, (District 3)". Carver County, MN. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  35. ^ a b "2020 Primary Election Results". Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  36. ^ "Tim Lynch, Chair (District 4)". Carver County, MN. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  37. ^ "John P. Fahey, (District 5)". Carver County, MN. Retrieved January 16, 2020.
  38. ^ Sullivan, Robert David; ‘How the Red and Blue Map Evolved Over the Past Century’; America Magazine in The National Catholic Review; June 29, 2016
  39. ^ "Election Results – Minnesota Legislative Reference Library". www.leg.state.mn.us. Retrieved April 17, 2018.
  40. ^ Leip, David. "Atlas of US Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved April 17, 2018.
  41. ^ The leading "other" candidate, Progressive Theodore Roosevelt, received 933 votes, while Socialist candidate Eugene Debs received 41 votes, Prohibition candidate Eugene Chafin received 30 votes, and Socialist Labor candidate Arthur Reimer received 8 votes.
  42. ^ "MN State Senate". www.senate.mn. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  43. ^ "MN State Senate". www.senate.mn. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  44. ^ "Rep. Kelly Morrison (33B) – Minnesota House of Representatives". www.house.leg.state.mn.us. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  45. ^ "Rep. Jim Nash (47A) – Minnesota House of Representatives". www.house.leg.state.mn.us. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  46. ^ "Rep. Greg Boe (47B) – Minnesota House of Representatives". www.house.leg.state.mn.us. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  47. ^ "Representative Dean Phillips". Representative Dean Phillips. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  48. ^ "Congressman Tom Emmer". Congressman Tom Emmer. Retrieved June 25, 2020.
  49. ^ "U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar". www.klobuchar.senate.gov. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  50. ^ "Home". Senator Tina Smith. Retrieved June 24, 2020.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 44°49′N 93°48′W / 44.82°N 93.80°W / 44.82; -93.80