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Malheur County, Oregon

Malheur County is a county located in the U.S. State of Oregon. It was named for Malheur River[?], which flows through it. As of 2000, the population is 31,615. Its county seat is Vale6.

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Economy The county is 94 percent rangeland. The Bureau of Land Management is landlord of 72% of the county. Irrigated fields in the county's northeast corner, known as Western Treasure Valley, are the center of intensive and diversified farming. Malheur County's economy also depends on tourism.

Geography According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 25,719 km² (9,930 mi²). 25,607 km² (9,887 mi²) of it is land and 111 km² (43 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 0.43% water.

Demographics As of the census of 2000, there are 31,615 people, 10,221 households, and 7,348 families residing in the county. The population density is 1/km² (3/mi²). There are 11,233 housing units at an average density of 0/km² (1/mi²). The racial makeup of the county is 75.78% White, 1.22% African American, 1.02% Native American, 1.96% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 17.38% from other races, and 2.56% from two or more races. 25.62% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There are 10,221 households out of which 36.20% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.30% are married couples living together, 10.40% have a female householder with no husband present, and 28.10% are non-families. 23.70% of all households are made up of individuals and 12.00% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.77 and the average family size is 3.28.

In the county, the population is spread out with 27.60% under the age of 18, 10.60% from 18 to 24, 27.20% from 25 to 44, 21.00% from 45 to 64, and 13.70% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 34 years. For every 100 females there are 116.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 121.20 males.

The median income for a household in the county is $30,241, and the median income for a family is $35,672. Males have a median income of $25,489 versus $21,764 for females. The per capita income for the county is $13,895. 18.60% of the population and 14.60% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 25.80% are under the age of 18 and 11.60% are 65 or older.

History Malheur County was created February 17, 1887, from the southern portion of Baker County. It was first settled by miners and stockmen in the early 1860s. The discovery of gold in 1863 created an interest in this area which resulted in the establishment of settlements and stock ranches. Basques settled in the region in the 1890s and were mainly engaged in sheep raising.

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