Hennepin County, Minnesota

Hennepin County, Minnesota

Infobox U.S. County
county = Hennepin County
state = Minnesota

founded year = 1852 [http://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/hinfo/govseries/No32.htm]
founded date = March 6
seat wl = Minneapolis
largest city wl = Minneapolis
area_total_sq_mi = 606
area_total_km2 = 1571
area_land_sq_mi = 557
area_land_km2 = 1442
area_water_sq_mi = 50
area_water_km2 = 129
area percentage = 8.21%
census yr = 2000
pop = 1116200
density_sq_mi = 2005
density_km2 = 774
time zone = Central
UTC offset = -6
DST offset = -5
footnotes =
web = www.hennepin.us
named for = Louis Hennepin, a Franciscan missionary, explorer, and author.

Hennepin County is the most populous county in the U.S. state of Minnesota. The county is bordered by the Mississippi River on the east and north and the Minnesota River on the south. Hennepin County is at the center of seven-county Minneapolis-St. Paul, the sixteenth largest metropolitan area in the United States with about 3.2 million residents. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the population of Hennepin County at 1,122,093 in 2006. [cite web|url=http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/GCTTable?-ds_name=PEP_2006_EST&-mt_name=PEP_2006_EST_GCTT1_ST2&-geo_id=04000US27&-format=ST-2&-tree_id=806&-context=gct | title=2006 Census Estimates | publisher=U.S. Census Bureau | date=2006 |accessdate=2008-07-07] The county seat is MinneapolisGR|6, the largest city in the state. The center of population of Minnesota is located in the city of Rogers [ [http://www.census.gov/geo/www/cenpop/statecenters.txt Population and Population Centers by State: 2000] ] .

The county is named in honor of the 17th-century French explorer Father Louis Hennepin. A Franciscan missionary, explorer, and author, his early published account of Saint Anthony Falls and the subsequent milling enterprise put Hennepin County ahead of nearby Ramsey County and Saint Paul, the state's capital.


Hennepin County was created in 1852 by the Minnesota Territorial Legislature. Father Louis Hennepin's name was chosen as he originally named Saint Anthony Falls and recorded some of the earliest accounts of the area for the Western world. Hennepin County's early history is closely linked to the establishment of the cities of Minneapolis and St. Anthony. [cite web | url = http://www.mpls.lib.mn.us/history/index.asp | title = History of Minneapolis | author = JoEllen Haugo and Mary Jo Laakso | publisher = Minneapolis Public Library | date= 2001 | accessdate = 2007-09-07]

Law and government

Like all counties in Minnesota, Hennepin is governed by an elected and nonpartisan board of commissioners. In Minnesota, county commissions usually have five members, but Hennepin, Ramsey, and St Louis counties have seven members. Each commissioner represents a district of equal population. In Hennepin the county commission appoints the medical examiner, county auditor-treasurer and . The sheriff and county attorney are also elected on a nonpartisan ticket. The county government's headquarters are in downtown Minneapolis in the Hennepin County Government Center. The county oversees the Hennepin County Library system, which in 2008 merged with and incorporated the Minneapolis Public Library system.

The county commission elects a chair who presides at meetings.Commissioners as of February 2008


1860= 12849
1870= 31566
1880= 67013
1890= 185294
1900= 228340
1910= 333480
1920= 415419
1930= 517785
1940= 568899
1950= 676579
1960= 842854
1970= 960080
1980= 941411
1990= 1032431
2000= 1116200
As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 1,116,200 people, 456,129 households, and 267,291 families residing in the county. The population density was 2,005 people per square mile (774/km²). There were 468,824 housing units at an average density of 842 per square mile (325/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 80.53% White, 8.95% Black or African American, 1.00% Native American, 4.80% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 2.06% from other races, and 2.60% from two or more races. 4.07% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 22.8% were of German, 12.0% Norwegian, 7.6% Irish and 7.2% Swedish ancestry according to Census 2000.There were 456,129 households out of which 28.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.30% were married couples living together, 9.90% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.40% were non-families. 31.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.39 and the average family size was 3.07.

In the county the population was spread out with 24.00% under the age of 18, 9.70% from 18 to 24, 33.70% from 25 to 44, 21.70% from 45 to 64, and 11.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 97.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $51,711, and the median income for a family was $65,985. Males had a median income of $42,466 versus $32,400 for females. The per capita income for the county was $28,789. About 5.00% of families and 8.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.50% of those under age 18 and 5.90% of those age 65 or over.

Hennepin County is the wealthiest county in the state of Minnesota and one of 100 Highest-income counties in the United States.

Cities and towns

† While mostly in Hennepin County, the city extends beyond the county border.
‡ Located in another county, but a part of the city extends into Hennepin County.

Colleges and universities

* Augsburg College
* University of St. Thomas Business and Law schools
* Dunwoody College of Technology in downtown west, Minneapolis
* Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park, Eden Prairie, and Plymouth
* Minneapolis Community and Technical College in downtown west, Minneapolis
* Metropolitan State University in Minneapolis
* North Central University
* Normandale Community College
* College of St. Catherine Minneapolis Campus
* Crown College
* Minneapolis College of Art and Design
* North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park
* Normandale Community College in Bloomington
* University of Minnesota, Twin Cities Campus in northeast Minneapolis

Miscellaneous topics

Library merger

In 2008, the Minneapolis Public Library system was merged into the Hennepin County Library system. [ [http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2007/03/13/librarymerger/ MPR: Will merger solve library's problems? ] ]

Smoking ban

In May 2005, Hennepin County enacted a county-wide indoor smoking ban. Bar business depressed over the short run, as smokers went into neighboring counties to light up, but has since returned closer to normal, especially in the downtown Minneapolis clubs that are among the most popular live music venues in the state. In December, to great controversy, county officials responded to lobbying efforts from bar owners and returned smoking to bars located outside of Minneapolis, Bloomington and Golden Valley, which have their own municipal smoking bans. In 2007 those community smoking bans became moot when Minnesota enacted its own state wide smoking ban.

Twins Ballpark

In August 2006, the Board voted 4-3 to levy a 0.15% sales tax within the county to fund the majority of the cost for a baseball stadium for the Minnesota Twins. Legislation passed by the Minnesota Legislature in the waning hours of the 2005-2006 session, and signed by Governor Tim Pawlenty, authorized the county to levy the tax without a voter referendum. It also created the Minnesota Ballpark Authority which will construct and manage the stadium on behalf of the county. The tax will be in effect for 30 years, with clauses allowing it to be increased by the board of commissioners.


External links

* [http://www.co.hennepin.mn.us Hennepin County Government website]
* [http://www.hclib.org/ Hennepin County Library website]

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