Ely, Minnesota

Ely, Minnesota

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Ely, Minnesota
settlement_type = City
nickname =
motto =

imagesize =
image_caption =


mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location of Ely, Minnesota

mapsize1 =
map_caption1 =

subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = United States
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_name1 = Minnesota
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name2 = St. Louis

government_footnotes =
government_type =
leader_title =
leader_name =
leader_title1 =
leader_name1 =
established_title =
established_date =

unit_pref = Imperial
area_footnotes =
area_magnitude =
area_total_km2 = 7.1
area_land_km2 = 7.0
area_water_km2 = 0.0
area_total_sq_mi = 2.7
area_land_sq_mi = 2.7
area_water_sq_mi = 0.0

population_as_of = 2000
population_footnotes =
population_total = 3724
population_density_km2 = 528.8
population_density_sq_mi = 1369.5

timezone = Central (CST)
utc_offset = -6
timezone_DST = CDT
utc_offset_DST = -5
elevation_footnotes =
elevation_m = 435
elevation_ft = 1427
latd = 47 |latm = 54 |lats = 8 |latNS = N
longd = 91 |longm = 51 |longs = 21 |longEW = W

postal_code_type =
postal_code =
area_code = 218
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 27-19142GR|2
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 0661205GR|3
website =
footnotes =

Ely (pronounced ['iːli] , rhyming with "freely") is a city in St. Louis County, Minnesota, USA. The population was 3,724 at the 2000 census. It is located in the Vermilion Iron Range, and was historically home to several Iron ore mines. Today the city is best known as a popular entry point for the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and the home to the International Wolf Center. The city's main street is lined with outfitters, outdoor clothing stores, and restaurants.

State Highway 1 and State Highway 169 are two of the main routes in the city.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.7 square miles (7.0 km²), all of it land.

The famed Echo Trail St. Louis County Road 116, a former logging road running north and west out of Ely and providing the primary access to the lakes of the western Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW), is a 72-mile roller coaster ride on asphalt and gravel through the untrammeled wilderness of the Superior National Forest and Kabetogama State Forest. Numerous trailheads and canoe portages along the Echo Trail provide access to the BWCAW. A sidetrip presses north to the resort village of Crane Lake, a gateway to Voyageurs National Park. Special attractions: Unmatched views of sharply rolling forest, lakes, wetlands, rivers, and granite crags in one of the most remote areas in the Continental U.S.; canoeing, fishing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, and primitive camping in the Superior National Forest and Boundary Waters; opportunity to see wildlife such as bald eagles, ospreys, moose, bears, and beavers; blueberry picking and wildflower viewing.

Famous Hoaxes

People from Ely have created various hoaxes as a way of garnering free publicity for the city. Currently the Chamber of Commerce website ely.org lists a controversy about the family that "paints the leaves" leaving the business, which followed a popular YouTube video about the same fabricated controversy. Previously, they released a story about Ely seceding from the U.S. to be part of Canada.


As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 3,724 people, 1,912 households, and 916 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,369.5 people per square mile (528.6/km²). There were 1,912 housing units at an average density of 703.2/sq mi (271.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.86% White, 0.86% African American, 0.54% Native American, 0.19% Asian, 0.30% from other races, and 1.26% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.67% of the population.

There were 1,912 households out of which 21.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 41.6% were married couples living together, 8.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 45.9% were non-families. 39.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 21.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.05 and the average family size was 2.72.

In the city the population was spread out with 17.8% under the age of 18, 16.2% from 18 to 24, 21.6% from 25 to 44, 22.9% from 45 to 64, and 21.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 101.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 102.6 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $27,615, and the median income for a family was $36,047. Males had a median income of $34,559 versus $18,833 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,855. About 9.5% of families and 14.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.9% of those under age 18 and 12.5% of those age 65 or over.


* Ely Memorial High School
* Vermilion Community College

Notable residents

* Jessica Biel - Actress
* Jim Brandenburg - Most published photographer at National Geographic
* Dorothy Louise Molter - the Root Beer Lady
* Joe Seliga - Canoe builder
* Sigurd F. Olson - Naturalist and author
* Will Steger - Explorer

ee also

*Minnesota Highway 1
*Minnesota Highway 169


External links

* [http://wikitravel.org/en/Ely_%28Minnesota%29 Ely, MN (WikiTravel)]
* [http://www.ely.org/ Ely Chamber of Commerce]
* [http://www.holry.org/essays/joecanoe.html Joe Seliga's Canoe]
* [http://www.wolf.org/ The International Wolf Center]
* [http://www.bear.org/ The North American Bear Center]
* [http://www.vcc.edu/ Vermilion Community College]
* [http://www.wely.com/ WELY 94.5 MHz FM Radio Station]

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