Ontonagon County (/ˌɒntəˈnɑːɡən/ on-tə-nah-gən) is a county in the Upper peninsula of the U.S. state of Michigan. As of the 2010 census, the population was 6,780.[2] The county seat is Ontonagon.[1][3] The county was set off in 1843, and organized in 1848.[1]It had been part of Chippewa and Mackinac counties, and it was thereafter split to create Gogebic County.[1][4] The name is said to be derived from a Native American word "Nondon-organ" meaning "hunting river"[1] and which appeared as named for a river called "Nantounagon" on a 1670 French map. Alternatively, it is said to be derived from theOjibwa "onagon" which means "dish" or "bowl."[5] 
IMG 20140825 135900


Geography Edit

According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 3,740.82 square miles (9,688.7 km2), of which 1,311.23 square miles (3,396.1 km2) (or 35.05%) is land and 2,429.59 square miles (6,292.6 km2) (or 64.95%) is water.[6]

At a longitude of 89.5°W, it is the westernmost county in the United States contained entirely within the Eastern Time Zone.

Geographic features Edit

Highways Edit

  • US 45
  • M‑26
  • M‑28
  • M‑38
  • M‑64

Adjacent counties Edit

  • Keweenaw County (northeast, water boundary only, in Lake Superior)
  • Houghton County (east)
  • Iron County (southeast)
  • Gogebic County (south)
  • Ashland County, Wisconsin (west, water boundary only, in Lake Superior)
  • Cook County, Minnesota (northwest, water boundary only, in Lake Superior)

National protected areas Edit

Demographics Edit

Historical population
1850 389
1860 4,568 1,074.3%
1870 2,845 −37.7%
1880 2,565 −9.8%
1890 3,756 46.4%
1900 6,197 65.0%
1910 8,650 39.6%
1920 12,428 43.7%
1930 11,114 −10.6%
1940 11,359 2.2%
1950 10,282 −9.5%
1960 10,584 2.9%
1970 10,548 −0.3%
1980 9,861 −6.5%
1990 8,854 −10.2%
2000 7,818 −11.7%
2010 6,780 −13.3%
Est. 2012 6,413 −5.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[7]
2012 Estimate[8]

The 2010 United States Census[9] indicates Ontonagon County had a population of 6,780. This is a decrease of 1038 people from the2000 United States Census. This is a -13.3% change in population. In 2010 there were 3,258 households and 1,954 families residing in the county. The population density was 6 people per square mile (2/km²). There were 5,672 housing units at an average density of 4 per square mile (2/km²). 97.3% of the population were White, 1.1% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.1% Black or African American, 0.1% of some other race and 1.3% of two or more races. 0.9% were Hispanic or Latino (of any race). 28.6% were of Finnish, 12.5%German, 10.6% American, 7.2% French,French Canadian or Cajun, 7.0% Irish, 6.2%English and 5.0% Polish ancestry.[10]

There were 3,258 households out of which 15.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.3% were married couples living together, 6.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.0% were non-families. 34.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 17.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.06 and the average family size was 2.61.

In the county the population was spread out with 15.8% under the age of 18, 4.1% from 18 to 24, 16.7% from 25 to 44, 37.0% from 45 to 64, and 26.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 52.7 years. The population is 51.6% male and 48.4% female.

The median income for a household in the county was $34,786, and the median income for a family was $46,845. The per capita income for the county was $22,195. About 9.0% of families and 14.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.2% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.

Government Edit

The county government operates the jail, maintains rural roads, operates the major local courts, keeps files of deeds and mortgages, maintains vital records, administers public health regulations, and participates with the state in the provision of welfare and other social services. The county board of commissioners controls the budget but has only limited authority to make laws or ordinances. In Michigan, most local government functions — police and fire, building and zoning, tax assessment, street maintenance, etc. — are the responsibility of individual cities and townships.

Ontonagon County elected officials Edit

(information as of June 2013)[11]

Communities and townships Edit

Village Edit

Unincorporated communities Edit

Townships Edit

Ghost town Edit

See also Edit