Crow Wing County, Minnesota
|Crow Wing County, Minnesota|
Location in the U.S. state of Minnesota
Minnesota's location in the U.S.
|Founded||May 23, 1857 (created)|
|Named for||Crow Wing River|
|• Total||1,157 sq mi (2,997 km2)|
|• Land||999 sq mi (2,587 km2)|
|• Water||157 sq mi (407 km2), 14%|
|• Density||55/sq mi (21/km2)|
|Time zone||Central: UTC−6/−5|
Crow Wing County is a county located in central part of the U.S. state of Minnesota. As of the 2010 census, the population was 62,500. Its county seat is Brainerd. The county was formed in 1857 and organized in 1870.
Crow Wing County is included in the Brainerd, MN Micropolitan Statistical Area.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Communities
- 5 Politics
- 6 See also
- 7 References
- 8 External links
This area was long occupied by the Ojibwe people, known as Chippewa in the United States. In addition, numerous Dakota people lived in central and southern Minnesota before European settlement. Crow Wing County was established by European Americans on May 23, 1857 and formally organized March 3, 1870. It is named for the Crow Wing River, which is itself named for an island in the river that resembles a crow's wing.
European Americans established a trading post by 1837 in this area, on the east side of the Mississippi River opposite the mouth of the Crow Wing River. A few years later the post had become a center of trading with the Chippewa (also known as Ojibwe) and other Native Americans on the region. It was the site of the general supply store for the area. By 1866, the village contained about 600 whites and Chippewa; it was one of the major population centers in Minnesota and was designated as the county seat.
Brainerd township was founded in 1870 when the Northern Pacific Railroad selected this site for a crossing of the Mississippi. It attracted development and population, soon surpassing Crow Wing. It was also designated as the new county seat, drawing off more residents and businesses from what became known as a ghost town, Old Crow Wing. Crow Wing State Park encompasses much of the former village site along the river.
Brainerd was incorporated as a city on November 19, 1881. The name was chosen in honor of Lawrence Brainerd, the father-in-law of J. Gregory Smith, the first president of the Northern Pacific Railroad Company. Smith had served as governor of Vermont (1863-1865) before moving west. He is called the father and founder of Brainerd. Lawrence Brainerd was the first president of the Vermont Central Railroad.
The Northern Pacific Railroad ran a special train as its first service to Brainerd on March 11, 1871. Its regular passenger service began the next September. The first passenger train from the Twin Cities, by way of Sauk Rapids, did not arrive until November 1, 1877.
The part of Crow Wing County that is west of the Mississippi was annexed from Cass County by an act of the Legislature on February 18, 1887, doubling the former area of the county.
Topography and vegetation
Crow Wing County has two state forests, the Crow Wing State Forest and the Emily State Forest. The Cuyuna Lakes State Trail lies in the Upper Mississippi River Basin. The topography of the region is gently rolling to flat, with waters and wetlands generously interspersed with the woodlands that cover the landscape. It is home to an abundance of wildlife. Visitors may see white-tailed deer, cottontail rabbit, snowshoe hare, raccoon, red fox, gray fox, coyote, mink, muskrat, squirrels, and beaver. Occasionally, American black bears may be observed. Bald eagles and osprey frequent the area, and many species of waterfowl also take advantage of the abundant aquatic habitat found in the marshes and lakes of the county.
There are many lakes and rivers in Crow Wing County. The main river is the Mississippi River, and there are several smaller streams in the county. It has about 417 recognized lakes. The top ten ranked according to size are:
- Gull Lake – 9,419 acres (38.12 km2)
- Pelican Lake – 8,254 acres (33.40 km2)
- Upper and Lower White Fish Lake – 7,372 acres (29.83 km2)
- North Long Lake – 5,997 acres (24.27 km2)
- Lake Edward – 2,576 acres (10.42 km2)
- Bay Lake – 2,393 acres (9.68 km2)
- Cross Lake (Minnesota) – 1,752 acres (7.09 km2)
- Round Lake – 1,645 acres (6.66 km2)
- Big Trout Lake – 1,343 acres (5.43 km2)
- Lower South Long Lake – 1,312 acres (5.31 km2)
Superfund site and environmental damage
The presence of railroads increased development in the county. Longterm, they contributed to environmental problems as well. The Burlington Northern (Brainerd/Baxter) United States Environmental Protection Agency Superfund site is located here, between the cities of Brainerd and Baxter. Burlington Northern Railroad had a treatment plant here for railroad ties, to strengthen and protect the wood from weather and insects. Wastewater generated from the wood-treating process was sent to two shallow, unlined ponds. This created a sludge, which contaminated both the underlying soils and the groundwater with creosote and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).
- U.S. Route 169
- Minnesota State Highway 6
- Minnesota State Highway 18
- Minnesota State Highway 25
- Minnesota State Highway 210
- Minnesota State Highway 309
- Minnesota State Highway 371
- Aitkin County (northeast)
- Mille Lacs County (southeast)
- Morrison County (southwest)
- Cass County (northwest, north)
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the 2000 census, there were 55,099 people, 22,250 households, and 15,174 families residing in the county. The population density was 55 people per square mile (21/km²). There were 33,483 housing units at an average density of 34 per square mile (13/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.64% White, 0.31% Black or African American, 0.78% Native American, 0.28% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.20% from other races, and 0.78% from two or more races. 0.69% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 32.5% were of German, 16.4% Norwegian, 9.4% Swedish, 6.2% Irish and 5.2% American ancestry.
There were 22,250 households out of which 30.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.70% were married couples living together, 8.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.80% were non-families. 26.40% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.70% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 2.93.
In the county, the population was spread out with 24.80% under the age of 18, 8.10% from 18 to 24, 25.60% from 25 to 44, 24.40% from 45 to 64, and 17.10% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 96.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.50 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $37,589, and the median income for a family was $44,847. Males had a median income of $33,838 versus $22,896 for females. The per capita income for the county was $19,174. About 6.50% of families and 9.80% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.40% of those under age 18 and 9.90% of those age 65 or over.
- Bay Lake Township
- Center Township
- Crow Wing Township
- Daggett Brook Township
- Deerwood Township
- Fairfield Township
- Fort Ripley Township
- Gail Lake Township
- Garrison Township
- Ideal Township
- Irondale Township
- Jenkins Township
- Lake Edwards Township
- Little Pine Township
- Long Lake Township
- Maple Grove Township
- Mission Township
- Nokay Lake Township
- Oak Lawn Township
- Pelican Township
- Perry Lake Township
- Platte Lake Township
- Rabbit Lake Township
- Roosevelt Township
- Ross Lake Township
- Sibley Township (former)
- St. Mathias Township
- Timothy Township
- Wolford Township
Other unincorporated communities
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Crow Wing County, Minnesota
- List of Superfund sites in Minnesota
- "Minnesota Place Names". Minnesota Historical Society. Retrieved March 17, 2014.
- "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved August 31, 2013.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on May 31, 2011. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- Warren Upham (1920). Minnesota Geographic Names: Their Origin and Historic Significance. Minnesota Historical Society. p. 154.
- Ripley, George; Dana, Charles A., eds. (1879). "Crow Wing". The American Cyclopædia.
- Nelson, Steven (2011).Savanna Soils of Minnesota. Minnesota: Self. pp. 53 - 56. ISBN 978-0-615-50320-2.
- "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on September 21, 2013. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "Burlington Northern (Brainerd/Baxter) Fact Sheet" Archived December 5, 2012, at the Wayback Machine., EPA, 07/13/12
- "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
- "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
- Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved 10 April 2018.
|Wikisource has the text of the 1879 American Cyclopædia article Crow Wing.|