Nevada County, California


Nevada County, California
County of Nevada
—  County  —

Seal
Location in the state of California
California's location in the United States
Country  United States
State  California
Region Sierra Nevada, Greater Sacramento
Incorporated 1851
County seat Nevada City
Area
 – Total 974 sq mi (2,522.6 km2)
 – Land 957 sq mi (2,478.6 km2)
 – Water 17 sq mi (44 km2)
Population (2010)
 – Total 98,764
 – Density 101.4/sq mi (39.2/km2)
Time zone Pacific Standard Time (UTC-8)
 – Summer (DST) Pacific Daylight Time (UTC-7)
Website www.mynevadacounty.com

Nevada County is a county located in the Sierra Nevada of California, in the Mother Lode country. As of 2010 its population was 98,764. The county seat is Nevada City.

Contents

History

Martis Creek Lake and Dam at the southern end of Nevada County near Truckee. At full pool the lake extends into Placer County in the distance to the south.
Martis Creek Lake and Dam in Nevada County. This picture was actually taken over Placer County, looking north into Nevada County.

Nevada County was created in 1851 from parts of Yuba County.

The county was named after the mining town of Nevada City, a name derived from the term "Sierra Nevada." The word nevada in Spanish means "snowy" or "snowcovered."[1]

Nevada City was the first to use the word "Nevada" as its name. In 1851 the newly formed Nevada County mimicked the name. The State of Nevada used the name 10 years later in 1861. The region came to life in the gold rush of 1849. Many historical sites remain to mark the birth of this important region in California's formative years. Among them are the Nevada Theatre in Nevada City, the oldest theater built in California in the year of 1865. It operates to this day and once hosted Mark Twain among other historical figures. The old 5-mile (8.0 km) house stagecoach stop built in 1890, also operates to this day as a provider of hospitality spanning three centuries. This historical site still features "The stagecoach safe" that is on display outside the present day restaurant and is the source of many legends of stagecoach robbers and notorious highwaymen in the California gold rush era. The gold industry in Nevada County thrived into the post WWII days.

Gold nugget of about 6 troy ounces, from the Yuba River placers of Nevada County. Size: 8.3 x 2.8 x 2.3 cm.

The county had many firsts and historic technological moments. The first long-distance telephone in the world, built in 1877 by the Ridge Telephone Company, connected French Corral with French Lake, 58 miles (93 km) away.[2] It was operated by the Milton Mining Company from a building on this site that had been erected about 1853. The Pelton wheel, designed to power gold mines, still drives hydro-electric generators today. Nevada City and Grass Valley were among the first California towns with electric lights. The Olympics, NASA, and virtually every television station around the country utilizes video/broadcasting equipment designed and manufactured by Grass Valley Group, founded in Grass Valley. Electronic medical dosing equipment was first developed and manufactured in Nevada County.[citation needed] The first commercially viable picture-phone was developed in Nevada City.[citation needed] More than fifty high tech and applied tech companies, and more than one thousand hardware and software design and development professionals call Nevada County home. The county is sometimes referred to as the "Silicon Valley of the Sierras." The arcade video game was born in Nevada County, with Pong.

The Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad was built in 1876, and was the only railroad in the West that was never robbed, even though its primary freight was gold. (Builder-owner John Flint Kidder's reputation made it clear that he would personally hunt down and kill anyone who tried.) The rail line closed in 1942 and was torn up for scrap.

In Grass Valley the historic Holbrooke Hotel opened in 1851 and housed Mark Twain, Bret Harte, and four U.S. presidents (U.S. Grant, Grover Cleveland, Benjamin Harrison, and James A. Garfield).

The Community of Rough and Ready seceded from the Union for a time and became the Great Republic of Rough and Ready.


Geography and ecology

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 974.49 square miles (2,523.9 km2), of which 957.61 square miles (2,480.2 km2) (or 98.27%) is land and 16.88 square miles (43.7 km2) (or 1.73%) is water.[3]

The western part of the county is defined by the course of several rivers and the irregular boundaries of adjoining counties. When the county was created, the founders wanted to include access to the transcontinental railroad, so a rectangular section was added that includes the railroad town of Truckee. What is remarkable about this is that the final shape of the county closely resembles the Deringer pocket pistol, a favorite at the time of the more urbane residents of this gold rush county.

Ecology

The county has substantial areas of forest, grassland, savanna, riparian area and other ecosystems. Forests include both coniferous as well as oak dominated woodland types. There are also numerous understory forbs and wildflowers including the Yellow Mariposa Lily (Calochortus luteus).[4]

National protected areas

Cities and towns

Cities over 10,000 population

Cities under 10,000 population

Towns over 10,000 population

Towns under 10,000 population

Adjacent counties

Nevada County is one of four counties in the United States to border a state with which it shares a name (the other three counties are Texas County, Oklahoma, Delaware County, Pennsylvania, and Ohio County, West Virginia).

Transportation Infrastructure

Major highways

Public Transportation

  • Gold Country Stage runs bus service in Grass Valley, Nevada City, Cedar Ridge and Colfax. A connection is available between Grass Valley and Auburn (Placer County).
  • Tahoe Area Rapid Transit, operated by Placer County, has a route connecting Truckee with Lake Tahoe and the state of Nevada. Truckee also has its own local bus service.
  • Greyhound and Amtrak stop in Truckee and Colfax.

Airports

Nevada County Air Park is a general aviation airport located just east of Grass Valley.
Truckee Tahoe Airport is a general aviation airport in Truckee, partially in Nevada County and partially in Placer County.

Demographics

2010

The 2010 United States Census reported that Nevada County had a population of 98,764. The racial makeup of Nevada County was 90,233 (91.4%) White, 389 (0.4%) African American, 1,044 (1.1%) Native American, 1,187 (1.2%) Asian, 110 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 2,678 (2.7%) from other races, and 3,123 (3.2%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8,439 persons (8.5%).[5]

Population reported at 2010 United States Census
The County
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Nevada County 98,764 90,233 389 1,044 1,187 110 2,678 3,123 8,439
Incorporated
cities and towns
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Grass Valley 12,860 11,493 46 208 188 9 419 497 1,341
Nevada City 3,068 2,837 26 28 46 0 40 91 205
Truckee 16,180 13,992 60 95 241 15 1,431 346 3,016
Census-designated
places
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
Alta Sierra 6,911 6,436 18 55 73 9 122 198 488
Floriston 73 67 0 4 0 0 0 2 0
Graniteville 11 11 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kingvale‡ 141 133 1 1 0 1 2 3 6
Lake of the Pines 3,917 3,669 5 20 65 7 24 127 246
Lake Wildwood 4,991 4,726 17 46 56 10 32 104 272
North San Juan 269 224 1 12 11 0 0 21 9
Penn Valley 1,621 1,434 9 34 23 0 31 90 143
Rough and Ready 963 886 3 6 16 6 11 35 56
Soda Springs 81 79 0 2 0 0 0 0 7
Washington 185 166 1 4 0 0 4 10 11
Unincorporated
communities
Total
Population
White
African
American
Native
American
Asian
Pacific
Islander
other
races
two or
more races
Hispanic
or Latino
(of any race)
All others not CDPs (combined) 47,493 44,080 202 529 468 53 562 1,599 2,639
‡ Note: these numbers reflect only the portion of this CDP in Nevada County

2000

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 92,033 people, 36,894 households, and 25,936 families residing in the county. The population density was 96 people per square mile (37/km²). There were 44,282 housing units at an average density of 46 per square mile (18/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 93.39% White, 0.28% Black or African American, 0.88% Native American, 0.78% Asian, 0.09% Pacific Islander, 1.94% from other races, and 2.64% from two or more races. 5.65% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 16.4% were of German, 16.3% English, 11.1% Irish, 6.8% Italian and 6.6% American ancestry according to Census 2000. 94.0% spoke English and 4.2% Spanish as their first language.

There were 36,894 households out of which 28.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.6% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.7% were non-families. 22.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.88.

In the county the population was spread out with 23.1% under the age of 18, 6.1% from 18 to 24, 24.1% from 25 to 44, 29.3% from 45 to 64, and 17.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 98.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.7 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $45,864, and the median income for a family was $52,697. Males had a median income of $40,742 versus $27,173 for females. The per capita income for the county was $24,007. About 5.5% of families and 8.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.5% of those under age 18 and 4.9% of those age 65 or over.

Politics

Nevada County vote
by party in presidential elections
Year GOP DEM Others
2008 46.2% 25,663 51.5% 28,617 2.1% 1,138
2004 53.4% 28,790 44.9% 24,220 1.7% 910
2000 54.8% 25,998 37.2% 17,670 8.0% 3,811
1996 50.4% 21,784 35.6% 15,369 14.0% 6,066
1992 39.2% 17,343 34.9% 15,433 25.9% 11,425
1988 57.8% 21,383 40.5% 14,980 1.8% 660
1984 62.4% 19,809 35.3% 11,198 2.4% 761
1980 57.9% 15,207 29.0% 7,605 13.1% 3,449
1976 48.4% 8,170 47.0% 7,926 4.7% 785
1972 54.7% 8,004 38.9% 5,693 6.4% 941
1968 51.4% 6,061 39.1% 4,607 9.6% 1,126
1964 43.3% 4,899 56.5% 6,397 0.2% 22
1960 53.4% 5,419 45.7% 4,633 0.9% 89
1956 59.7% 5,475 40.0% 3,667 0.3% 31
1952 64.0% 6,819 35.1% 3,735 0.9% 94
1948 47.1% 3,917 47.0% 3,914 5.9% 495
1944 44.4% 2,648 54.8% 3,266 0.8% 47
1940 32.7% 2,863 66.0% 5,782 1.3% 114
1936 26.8% 1,913 71.9% 5,128 1.3% 90
1932 32.9% 1,842 63.3% 3,544 3.8% 210
1928 52.0% 2,173 46.9% 1,959 1.1% 47
1924 42.2% 1,513 8.6% 307 49.2% 1,763
1920 65.0% 2,055 23.6% 747 11.4% 361

As of April 21, 2009, there are 25,601 registered Republicans, 21,548 registered Democrats, and 12,184 Declined to State voters in Nevada County. The American Independent and Green Parties have under 2,000 registered voters each. In both 2000 and 2004, George W. Bush won a majority of the votes in the county. In 2008, Barack Obama carried the county with a 51.5%-46.2% margin. 2008 marked the first time Nevada County went for a Democrat since Lyndon Johnson in 1964.

Nevada County is part of California's 4th congressional district, which is held by Republican Tom McClintock. In the state legislature, Nevada County is represented by Doug LaMalfa (Rep) of the 4th Senate District and Ted Gaines (Rep) of the 1st Senate District. Dan Logue (Rep) holds the seat for the 3rd Assembly District.

On November 4, 2008 Nevada County voted for Proposition 8, which amended the California Constitution to ban same-sex marriages, by 3 votes.

Noted residents

Herbert Hoover, President of the United States. Hoover lived in Nevada City as a young mining engineer after graduating from Stanford University. Chuck Yeager, Pilot, first man to break the Sound Barrier. Clint Walker, Actor. Lyman Gilmore, a contemporary of the Wright Brothers, developed early powered aircraft and operated the world's first commercial air field in Grass Valley. There is also evidence he may have flown before the Wright brothers.

Charles Litton Sr., a resident and entrepreneur of Nevada County, assisted Raytheon in the development of the magnetron tube.

National Football League star Ricky Williams lives in the county.

The former actor and television announcer Edwin W. Reimers resided in Nevada City at the time of his death in 1986.

Former Troubled Assets Relief Program head Neel Kashkari lives in the county as part of his "Washington detox."[7]

Books

See also

References

External links

Coordinates: 39°18′N 120°46′W / 39.30°N 120.77°W / 39.30; -120.77


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