Geauga County, Ohio

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Geauga County, Ohio
Chardon Courthouse.jpg
Geauga County Courthouse
Seal of Geauga County, Ohio
Map of Ohio highlighting Geauga County
Location in the state of Ohio
Map of the United States highlighting Ohio
Ohio's location in the U.S.
Founded March 1, 1806[1]
Named for a Native American word for "raccoon"
Seat Chardon
Largest city Chardon
 • Total 408 sq mi (1,057 km2)
 • Land 400 sq mi (1,036 km2)
 • Water 8.1 sq mi (21 km2), 2.0%
 • (2010) 93,389
 • Density 233/sq mi (90/km²)
Congressional district 14th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Geauga County (/ˈɔːɡə/ jee-AW-gə) is a county located in the U.S. state of Ohio. As of the 2010 census, the population was 93,389.[2] The county seat is Chardon.[3] The county is named for a Onondaga or Seneca language word meaning 'raccoon',[4] originally the name of the Grand River.

Geauga County is part of the Cleveland-Elyria, OH Metropolitan Statistical Area.

In 2008, Forbes Magazine ranked Geauga County as the fourth best place in America to raise a family.[5]


Geauga County is named after the Onondaga word jyo’ä·gak or Seneca jo’ä·ka, both meaning 'raccoon' (originally the name of the Grand River).

After the discovery of the New World, the land that became Geauga County was originally part of the French colony of Canada (New France), which was ceded in 1763 to Great Britain and renamed Province of Quebec. In the late 18th century the land became part of the Connecticut Western Reserve in the Northwest Territory, and then was purchased by the Connecticut Land Company in 1795.

Geauga County was founded on March 1, 1806 as the second county in the Connecticut Western Reserve, originating from Trumbull County, Ohio. In 1808, the size of Geauga County was reduced by the creation of Ashtabula County, Cuyahoga County, and Lake County.

The present-day boundaries were established in 1840 following the creation of Lake County. A disagreement about the location of the county seat began in 1808 when commissioners from Trumbull County began the process of identifying the seat of justice.[6] Residents in the northern townships wanted the seat in Champion, renamed Painesville, Ohio in 1832.[7] Residents in southern townships desired a centrally located county seat and took advantage of a tract of land donated by Peter Chardon Brooks called Chardon, Ohio. Despite Chardon being selected in 1809, the argument was never really settled. Over the next two decades, population growth in the seven northern townships exceeded the remaining sixteen southern townships, further fueling the disagreement. On January 21, 1840, a petition to create Lake County from seven townships in northern Geauga County and Willoughby Township from Cuyahoga County were presented to the Ohio House of Representatives.[7] Seabury Ford presented petitions against its creation. Lake County was established in March 1840 by the Ohio state legislature. As the newly formed Lake County did not have sufficient territory to meet the requirements for a county, the northern border included submerged land beneath the waters of Lake Erie.

The first settlement in Geauga was at Burton, Ohio in the year 1798, when three families settled there from Connecticut.[8]


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 408 square miles (1,060 km2), of which 400 square miles (1,000 km2) is land and 8.1 square miles (21 km2) (2.0%) is water.[9]

Geauga County receives the most precipitation of any county in northern Ohio, with most of the county receiving over 42 inches annually in an average year, and some parts exceeding 44 inches.[10]

Drainage system[edit]

The geography of Geauga County was radically changed by Illinoian and Wisconsinan glaciation, which is evident in the deranged drainage system, landscape change, and glacial till. The headwaters of three watercourses in the Lake Erie basin are located in Geauga County. These include the Cuyahoga River, Chagrin River, and Grand River. Portions of all three are designated Ohio Scenic Rivers.[11]

Point sources of the east branch of the Cuyahoga River are located in Hambden Township, Claridon Township, and Burton Township,.[12][13] The point source of the west branch of the Cuyahoga River is near the intersection of Pond and Rapids Roads in Burton Township.[14][15]

The point sources of the east branch of the Chagrin River are at Bass Lake in Munson Township and the southwest corner of the City of Chardon.[16][17] McFarland Creek in Bainbridge Township, sometimes referred to as Chagrin Falls because of the postal zip code, is a tributary of the Aurora branch of the Chagrin River.[18]

Point sources of the Grand River are located in Parkman Township, Troy Township, and Swine Creek in Middlefield Township.[19][20]

While the majority of waterways in Geauga County are part of the Lake Erie watershed, the Silver Creek in Troy Township is a tributary to the west branch of the Mahoning River, part of the Ohio River watershed, the largest tributary to the Mississippi River.[21] There is another Silver Creek in Geauga County located in Russell Township, which is a tributary to the east branch of the Chagrin River.[22]

Adjacent counties[edit]


Historical population
Census Pop.
1810 2,917
1820 7,791 167.1%
1830 15,813 103.0%
1840 16,297 3.1%
1850 17,827 9.4%
1860 15,817 −11.3%
1870 14,190 −10.3%
1880 14,251 0.4%
1890 13,489 −5.3%
1900 14,744 9.3%
1910 14,670 −0.5%
1920 15,036 2.5%
1930 15,414 2.5%
1940 19,430 26.1%
1950 26,646 37.1%
1960 47,573 78.5%
1970 62,977 32.4%
1980 74,474 18.3%
1990 81,129 8.9%
2000 90,895 12.0%
2010 93,389 2.7%
Est. 2014 94,295 [23] 1.0%
U.S. Decennial Census[24]
1790-1960[25] 1900-1990[26]
1990-2000[27] 2010-2014[2]

As of the census of 2010,[28] there were 93,389 people, 34,264 households, and 25,654 families residing in the county. The population density was 231.1 people per square mile (89.3/km²). There were 34,264 occupied housing units at an average density of 84.8 per square mile (32.8/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.0% White, 1.4% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.6% Asian, 0.001% Pacific Islander, 0.3% from other races, and 0.8% from two or more races. 88.1% spoke English, 4.6% German, 1.2% Spanish, and 3.3% spoke other West Germanic languages.[29]

There were 34,264 households out of which 31.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 63.8% were married couples living together, 7.70% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.50% had a male householder with no wife present, and 25.10% were non-families. 25.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.70 and the average family size was 3.16.

In the county the population was spread out with 26.0% under the age of 18, 6.60% from 18 to 24, 20.1% from 25 to 44, 31.8% from 45 to 64, and 15.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43.3 years. For every 100 females there were 96.85 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.72 males.

As of the census[30] of 2000, 0.59% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race, 26.8% were of German, 15.3% Irish, 14.3% English, 10.8% Italian 7.5% Polish and 5.2% American ancestry. According to Census 2000, 89.4% spoke English, 5.1% German, 1.5% Pennsylvania Dutch and 1.0% Spanish as their first language.

As of the census[30] of 2000, the median income for a household in the county was $60,200, and the median income for a family was $67,427. Males had a median income of $48,443 versus $30,567 for females. The per capita income for the county was $27,944. About 2.80% of families and 4.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.10% of those under age 18 and 5.10% of those age 65 or over. The median household income and per capita income were the second highest among Ohio counties after Delaware, and 74th and 79th in the country, respectively.


U.S. highways[edit]

State highways[edit]

An official Geauga County Road Map

Public transportation[edit]

The mostly rural nature of Geauga County limits the feasibility of a fixed-route transit system. Instead, Geauga County Transit offers a demand-responsive door-to-door transit system within the County with some out-of-county service. As of 2015, one-way fares for door-to-door service were $6.00, with 50% discounts for the elderly, disabled, or children 6 years to 17 years old. Children 5-years and younger are free. Out-of-county fares are two times the posted in-county fares. Service is provided 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM Monday through Friday. Reservations are suggested with at least three days notice, but can be made up to one week in advance.[31]


Main article: Geauga County Airport

Geauga County is home to one public airport located in Middlefield, Ohio.[32] The Geauga County Airport call sign is 7G8. It is home to Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter 5.[33]

The Geauga County Airport sits on 41 acres purchased by the Middlefield Chamber of Commerce and donated to Geauga County. Ground was broken August 31, 1967 and it was officially opened September 29, 1968. The airport has one 3500' long by 65' wide runway. Runway numbers are 11 on the west end and 29 on the east end. There are two T-hangars, one private hangar, two community hangars, a pilot lounge and restroom facility.[34][35]


Public school districts[edit]

Geauga County is home to seven public school districts as illustrated in this list of school districts in Ohio.

The Geauga County Educational Service Center provides collaborative programs and services for the seven local school districts in Geauga County, leveraging resources to reduce overall costs to each district. The ESC has formed a P-16 bridge initiative whose mission is to create workforce readiness in our youth and adults through substantive partnerships between educators, businesses, community organizations, parents focusing on important transitions experienced at each level. Geauga County P-16 will develop a sustainable process and program to insure its continued success.[36]

District Location Communities served
Berkshire Local School District Burton, Ohio Burton Township, Burton Village, most of Claridon Township, Troy Township, Welshfield
Cardinal Local School District Middlefield, Ohio Huntsburg Township, Middlefield Township, Middlefield Village, Parkman Township, small part of Mespotamia (Trumbull County)
Chardon Local School District Chardon, Ohio Aquilla Village, Chardon City, Chardon Township, part of Claridon Township, Hambden Township, most of Munson Township, very small part of Concord Township (Lake County)
Kenston Local School District Bainbridge Township, Ohio Auburn Township, most of Bainbridge Township
Ledgemont Local School District Thompson, Ohio Montville Township, Thompson Township, small part of Huntsburg Township. Ledgemont LSD merged with Berkshire LSD effective 2015-2016.[37]
Newbury Local School District Newbury, Ohio Newbury Township
West Geauga County Local School District Chester Township, Ohio Chester Township, Chesterland, small part of Hunting Valley, part of Munson Township, unincorporated part of Russell Township
Map of school districts in Geauga County with township boundaries superimposed

In addition, there are five neighboring public school districts that serve portions of Geauga County residents.

District Location Communities served in Geauga County
Chagrin Falls Exempted Village School District Chagrin Falls, Ohio and South Russell, Ohio South Russell Village; small parts of Bainbridge and Russell Townships
Kirtland Local School District Kirtland, Ohio small part of Chardon Township
Madison Local School District Madison, Ohio small part of Thompson Township
Mentor Exempted Village School District Mentor, Ohio small part of Chardon Township
Riverside Local School District Painesville, Ohio small part of Chardon Township

Joint Vocational School District[edit]

Taxpayers in six of the seven school districts in Geauga County support a Joint Vocational School District (JVSD) at the Auburn Career Center in Concord Township, Ohio. The career center offers a variety of programs in health, education, and hands-on technology.

Private and parochial schools[edit]

Geauga County is home to eight private, parochial, and/or specialized schools.

District Location Communities served
Agape Christian Academy Burton Township, Ohio and Troy Township, Ohio Accepts applications prior to the start of each school year
Hawken School Gates Mills, Ohio College preparatory day school: online application, site visit and testing
Hershey Montessori Farm School Huntsburg Township, Ohio parent-owned, and chartered by Ohio Department of Education: application deadline January each year
Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin Munson Township, Ohio Roman Catholic Diocese of Cleveland: open to 8th grade students who have attended a Catholic elementary school and others who have not
Solon/Bainbridge Montessori School of Languages Bainbridge Township, Ohio nonsectarian Montessori School: quarterly enrollment periods
Saint Anselm School Chester Township, Ohio Roman Catholic Diocese of Cleveland K - 8th grade; preschool
Saint Helen's School Newbury, Ohio Roman Catholic Diocese of Cleveland K - 8th grade; parishioners and non-parishioners
Saint Mary's School Chardon, Ohio Roman Catholic Diocese of Cleveland preschool - 8th grade; parishioners and non-parishioners
Laurel School Butler Campus Russell Township, Ohio Private K-12 Girls Only School, College Preparatory

Higher education[edit]

Geauga County has one institution of higher learning:


Congressional representation[edit]

U.S. representation[edit]

Seal of the United States House of Representatives.svg Ohio's 14th Congressional District

Seal of the United States Senate.svg U.S. Senate

State representation[edit]

Seal of Ohio.svg 76th Ohio House District - Official Web site

Seal of Ohio.svg 99th Ohio House District - Official Web site

Seal of Ohio.svg 18th Ohio Senate District - Official Web site

Seal of Ohio.svg 32nd Ohio Senate District - Official Web site


US-CourtOfAppeals-6thCircuit-Seal.png U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals - Official Web site

Ohio 11th District Courts of Appeals - Official Web site


Map of Geauga County, Ohio with Municipal and Township Labels




Census-designated places[edit]

Unincorporated communities[edit]

Notable people[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Ohio County Profiles: Geauga County" (PDF). Ohio Department of Development. Retrieved 2011-08-20. 
  2. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 8, 2015. 
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  4. ^ Historical Society of Geauga County, O. (1880). Pioneer and General History of Geauga County: With Sketches of Some of the Pioneers and Prominent Men. Historical Society of Geauga County. p. 24. 
  5. ^ "America's Best Places To Raise A Family". Forbes. June 30, 2008. 
  6. ^ Stith, B.A. (1989). Lake County, Ohio: 150 Years of Tradition. Northridge, CA: Windsor Publications. 
  7. ^ a b Stith, B.A. "A Vision Divided" (PDF). Case Western Reserve University. Retrieved August 21, 2011. 
  8. ^ Howe, Henry (1852). Historical Collections of Ohio. Cincinnati, Ohio: Bradley & Anthony. pp. 187–190. 
  9. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved February 8, 2015. 
  10. ^ "Average Annual Precipitation: Ohio", Map, Published by Western Regional Climate Center, Data from 1961-1990.
  11. ^ "Scenic Rivers". Ohio Scenic Rivers Program. Ohio Dept of Natural Resources (ODNR). Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  12. ^ "Cuyahoga River". The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  13. ^ "East Branch Cuyahoga River (ID:1039937)". Geographic Names Information System (GNIS). U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  14. ^ "Upper Cuyahoga State Scenic River". Ohio State Scenic Rivers. ODNR. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Cuyahoga River (ID:1072205)". Geographic Names Information System (GNIS). U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  16. ^ "Chagrin River". The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History. Case Western Reserve University. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  17. ^ "East Branch Chagrin River (ID:1039937)". Geographic Names Information System (GNIS). U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  18. ^ "Aurora Branch Chagrin River (ID:1066554)". Geographic Names Information System. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  19. ^ "Grand State Wild and Scenic River". Ohio State Scenic Rivers. ODNR. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Grand River (ID:1066727)". Geographic Names Information System. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Silver Creek (ID: 1046276)". Geographic Names Information System. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  22. ^ "Silver Creek (ID: 1046273)". Geographic Names Information System. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved August 28, 2011. 
  23. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  24. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 8, 2015. 
  25. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved February 8, 2015. 
  26. ^ Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved February 8, 2015. 
  27. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved February 8, 2015. 
  28. ^ "American Factfinder". Geauga County, Ohio. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-09-10. 
  29. ^
  30. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  31. ^ Geauga County Transit
  32. ^ Geauga Airport Authority
  33. ^ Experimental Aircraft Association Chapter 5
  34. ^ The official airport Web site
  35. ^ Airnav Statistics Web site
  36. ^ "P-16 Bridge". Geauga ESC. Geauga ESC. Retrieved August 20, 2011. 
  37. ^ "Berkshire-Ledgemont Territory Transfer Information.". Berkshire Merger. Berkshire LSD. Retrieved May 17, 2015. 
  38. ^
  39. ^ a b Scobey, FE and Doty, EW. (1904). Biographical Annals of Ohio: A handbook of the government and institutions o the State of Ohio. Springfield, Ohio: The Springfield Publishing Company. p. 262. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 41°30′N 81°10′W / 41.50°N 81.17°W / 41.50; -81.17