White Pine County, Nevada

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White Pine County, Nevada
White Pine County Courthouse in Ely.jpg
White Pine County Courthouse in Ely
Map of Nevada highlighting White Pine County
Location in the state of Nevada
Map of the United States highlighting Nevada
Nevada's location in the U.S.
Founded 1869
Seat Ely
Largest city Ely
 • Total 8,897 sq mi (23,043 km2)
 • Land 8,876 sq mi (22,989 km2)
 • Water 21 sq mi (54 km2), 0.2%
 • (2010) 10,030
 • Density 1.1/sq mi (0/km²)
Congressional district 4th
Website www.whitepinecounty.net
Wheeler Peak, elevation 13,065 feet (3,982 m), in Great Basin National Park.
Timber Creek in the Schell Creek Range

White Pine County is a county located in the U.S. state of Nevada. As of the 2010 census, the population was 10,030.[1] Its county seat is Ely.[2]

It is the home of Great Basin National Park. The name "White Pine" is an old name for the Limber Pine, a common tree in the county's mountains. In 2009, White Pine County ranked ninth in the United States for suicide rates.[3] In 2014, the county ranked fifth for suicide, out of more than 3,100 U.S. counties.[4]


White Pine County was established in 1869 from Lander County and named after the heavy growth of Limber Pine trees in the area which were at the time called white pine. Hamilton was the first county seat from 1869 to 1887 when it was replaced after a fire by Ely.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 8,897 square miles (23,040 km2), of which 8,876 square miles (22,990 km2) is land and 21 square miles (54 km2) (0.2%) is water.[5]

Several sections of the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest exist within the county, within the Snake Range, Egan Range, White Pine Range, Ruby Mountains, and Schell Creek Range. The county also contains Ward Charcoal Ovens State Historic Park and Cave Lake State Park.

In the southeastern part of the county within Great Basin National Park lies 13,065 ft (3982 m) Wheeler Peak, the tallest independent mountain within Nevada and the second highest point within the state (the highest point being Boundary Peak).[6] It is also the most topographically prominent peak in the county and the second most prominent peak in Nevada (after Mount Charleston).

Major highways[edit]


White Pine County is home to a number of designated wilderness areas. They were created on December 20, 2006, by the "White Pine County Conservation, Recreation, and Development Act of 2006."[7] About half are integral parts of Humboldt National Forest. The rest are managed by the Bureau of Land Management. One is shared between the two agencies. Some extend into neighboring counties, as indicated.

Adjacent counties[edit]

National protected areas[edit]


Historical population
Census Pop.
1870 7,189
1880 2,682 −62.7%
1890 1,721 −35.8%
1900 1,961 13.9%
1910 7,441 279.4%
1920 8,935 20.1%
1930 11,771 31.7%
1940 12,377 5.1%
1950 9,424 −23.9%
1960 9,808 4.1%
1970 10,150 3.5%
1980 8,167 −19.5%
1990 9,264 13.4%
2000 9,181 −0.9%
2010 10,030 9.2%
Est. 2014 10,034 [8] 0.0%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]
1790-1960[10] 1900-1990[11]
1990-2000[12] 2010-2013[1]

As of the census[13] of 2000, there were 9,181 people, 3,282 households, and 2,159 families residing in the county. The population density was 1.0 people per square mile (0.40/km²). There were 4,439 housing units at an average density of 0.50 per square mile (0.19/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 86.35% White, 4.14% Black or African American, 3.29% Native American, 0.78% Asian, 0.24% Pacific Islander, 3.09% from other races, and 2.10% from two or more races. 10.98% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 3,282 households out of which 31.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.80% were married couples living together, 9.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.2% were non-families. 29.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.5% 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 3.01.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.2% under the age of 18, 7.6% from 18 to 24, 29.9% from 25 to 44, 24.8% from 45 to 64, and 13.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 128.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 138.5 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $36,688, and the median income for a family was $44,136. Males had a median income of $36,083 versus $26,425 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,309. About 10.3% of families and 11.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.8% of those under age 18 and 7.6% of those age 65 or over.


From the late 19th century until near the end of the 20th century, the major industry was mining the region's deposits of copper, silver, and gold. The most notable of these operations included a series of open-pit copper mines near the town of Ruth, and a copper smelter in McGill, run by the Kennecott Utah Copper Corporation.


Steam excursion train at the Nevada Northern Railway Museum's East Ely depot

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 23, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ McCoy, Cara (November 9, 2009). "Analysis of suicide numbers puts Nevada high on list". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved November 15, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Suicide a big concern in White Pine County". The Ely Times. November 13, 2015. Retrieved November 15, 2015. 
  5. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Wheeler Peak, Nevada". Peakbagger.com. 
  7. ^ Fast facts about America's wilderness - Wilderness.net
  8. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015. 
  9. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 20, 2014. 
  13. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°26′N 114°54′W / 39.44°N 114.90°W / 39.44; -114.90