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Jackson County, Michigan
Seal of Jackson County, Michigan
Map of Michigan highlighting Jackson County
Location in the state of Michigan
Map of the U.S. highlighting Michigan
Michigan's location in the U.S.
Organized August 1, 1832
Seat Jackson
Largest city Jackson
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

723.76 sq mi (1,875 km²)
706.60 sq mi (1,830 km²)
17.17 sq mi (44 km²), 2.37%
 - (2010)
 - Density

225/sq mi (87/km²)

Jackson County is a county in the U.S. state of Michigan. Its population was 160,248 as of the 2010 Census. This county is the sole county in the Jackson Metropolitan Statistical Area. The county seat is Jackson[1]. It is named for U.S. President Andrew Jackson. It is considered to be one of Michigan's "Cabinet counties", named for members of Jackson's Cabinet. The Jackson County Courthouse was designed by Claire Allen, a prominent southern Michigan architect. Jackson County is also home to the Michigan Whitetail Hall Of Fame.

Government[edit | edit source]

The county government operates the county jail, maintains township 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.

Elected officials[edit | edit source]

(information as of January 28, 2009)

Demographics[edit | edit source]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1840 13,130
1850 19,431 48.0%
1860 26,671 37.3%
1870 36,047 35.2%
1880 42,031 16.6%
1890 45,031 7.1%
1900 48,222 7.1%
1910 53,426 10.8%
1920 72,539 35.8%
1930 92,304 27.2%
1940 93,108 0.9%
1950 108,168 16.2%
1960 131,994 22.0%
1970 143,274 8.5%
1980 151,495 5.7%
1990 149,756 −1.1%
2000 158,422 5.8%
Est. 2010 160,248 1.2%

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 158,422 people, 58,168 households, and 40,833 families residing in the county. The population density was 224 people per square mile (87/km²). There were 62,906 housing units at an average density of 89/sq mi (34/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 88.54% White, 7.92% Black or African American, 0.40% Native American, 0.53% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.83% from other races, and 1.74% from two or more races. 2.20% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 21.7% were of German, 12.8% English, 11.5% American, 9.9% Irish and 8.1% Polish ancestry according to Census 2000. 95.9% spoke English and 2.1% Spanish as their first language.

There were 58,168 households out of which 33.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.80% were married couples living together, 12.00% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.80% were non-families. 24.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.03.

In the county the population was spread out with 25.60% under the age of 18, 8.10% from 18 to 24, 30.40% from 25 to 44, 23.00% from 45 to 64, and 12.90% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 104.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 103.70 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $43,171, and the median income for a family was $50,970. Males had a median income of $38,919 versus $26,448 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,171. About 6.50% of families and 9.00% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.40% of those under age 18 and 6.10% of those age 65 or over.

Local Parks and State Parks and Preserves and Campgrounds[edit | edit source]

  • Blackman Park: a small park on Michigan Avenue in the middle of the city of Jackson. There is a statue in the middle of the park honoring soldiers from the civil war, and there are a few benches and some foliage.
  • Bloomfield Park: a small park in the Jackson city limits on Michigan Avenue. There are picnic tables and a small playground.
  • Camp Storer: a campground in Napoleon Township in the eastern part of the county. It is located on Stony Lake in a wooded area with wetlands.
  • Camp Teetonkah: a campground for Boy Scout troops. It was created in 1912 and is the second oldest Boy Scout camp in America. Usually every spring, all the local Boy Scout troops in the area come and compete against each other for the weekend. The campground is on the shores of Big Wolf Lake and consists of 240 acres (0.97 km2) of forest and wetlands. It has a dining hall and bathrooms with showers. It is located in Leoni Township in the eastern part of the county.
  • Cascade Falls Park: one of the larger parks in the country. It has two golf courses, one with 18 holes and a short course with 9 hole, as well as two large play structures. It is famous for its Cascade Manor House and Cascade Falls which are one of the largest man-made falls in the world. The park is also home to the Cascades Ice Cream Co. which opens when there is usually still snow on the ground and stays open until October. Every late August, the Annual Civil War Muster is held there. There are some man-made ponds, and wetlands with many types of water fowl. Part of it is in the city limits of Jackson, but most is in Summit Township.
  • Dahlem Environmental Education Center: an educational place for children. It is located in Summit Township in the southern part of the county. It has an educational center, many ponds, wetlands, and forest area.
  • Ella Sharp Park: one of the county's larger parks. It consists of a golf course, a miniature golf course, a public swimming pool, the Peter Hurst Planetarium, and the Ella Sharp Museum. It is located right outside the city limits of Jackson.
  • Green Park: a small park on the northern part of the Jackson city limits in Blackman Township its right by Interstate 94. The Grand River goes through the outskirts of the park, the Penn Central Transportation Company railroad track also goes through the park. An old train engine car lies in the park as a monument. The park consist of some ponds and many water fowl.
  • Loomis Park: a small park in the Jackson city limits. It consist of picnic tables, and a large wooden playground. There are a lot of trees but not enough to be considered woods.
  • MacCready Reserve: a fairly large nature preserve on the west side of the township. It has six and a half miles of hiking trails and 408 acres (1.651 km2). The property used to be owned by Thomas C. MacCready in the late 19th century, and after three generations of family, Douglas, Lynn, and Willis MacCready donated the land to Michigan State University in 2001. The area has five hiking trails, some easy and some more difficult ones. The area is managed by the Departments of Forestry, Fisheries and Wildlife, MSU Extension, and MSU Land Management Office. The area contains many forests, rolling hills, and wetlands and even a natural spring. The area is meant to be forest studies and hiking.
  • Martin Luther King Park: a small park in the Jackson city limits. It has picnic tables, a playground, and a Recreation Area with some trees and foliage.
  • Meridian Baseline Historical Park: a historical park in Henrietta Township in the northern part of the county. The park is on Pleasant Lake.
  • Snyder Park: a small park in the small unincorporated village of Horton in Hanover Township in the southwestern part of the county. The park has a gazebo, picnic tables, and a small man-made waterfall that connects to a pond called Mill Pond which is part of the Northern Branch of the Kalamazoo River. The area is also wetland, forest, and the village of Horton.
  • Sharonville State Game Area: a wilderness wildlife area consisting of forest and swamps. It is located in Norvell Township in the eastern part of the county and in part of Washtenaw County.
  • Twin Pines Campground: a large campground in Pulaski Township in the southwestern part of the county. The campground is on the South Branch Kalamazoo River. There is a playground and a basketball court. The campground allows campers and RVs, as well as traditional camping in a tent. They feature a dining and activity hall. There is the Kalamazoo River, wetlands, and forest.
  • Vandercook Lake County Park: a small park on Vandercook Lake in the Village area of Vandercook Lake in Summit Township. It consists of a beach, picnic tables, playground, and some woods.
  • Waterloo State Recreation Area: the only State Park in Jackson County. It covers about 21,000-acre (85 km2); it is also the largest State Park in the Lower Peninsula and the third largest in Michigan. The area contains 17 lakes, many ponds and streams, and numerous woods. They have RV or tent camping there. The park offers swimming on Portage Lake, canoeing, fishing, boating, picnicking, and biking. Waterloo State Recreation Area is located in the eastern part of Jackson County and the western part of Washtenaw County.
  • William Nixon Memorial Park: a small park in the middle of the city of Jackson. It has skateboard ramps, a public water park, including two large water slides.
  • 4-H Camp McGregor: a small campground, mainly a place for children in Liberty Township. The area has swamps, ponds and forests. It is on the shoreline of Crispell Lake.

Major Rivers that go through the county[edit | edit source]

  • Kalamazoo River- the Kalamazoo is made up of the North Branch and South Branch.

The North Branch starts in Jackson County in Hanover Township. It starts in Pine Hills Lake and Farewell Lake and flows through a small part of Liberty Township and then back into Hanover Township. It then flows into Spring Arbor Township and Concord Township. It then flows out of Jackson County and into Calhoun County before it goes through the town of Albion where the North Branch connects with the South Branch and they form to be one river.

The South Branch starts in the wetlands near the town North Adams in Hillsdale County and flows through the rest of Hillsdale County. It enters Jackson County and goes through a small part of Hanover Township before reentering Hillsdale County and then reentering Jackson County where it goes through Pulaski Township. It then enters Calhoun County and connects with the Northern Branch when it reaches the town of Albion.

When the South Branch and North Branch connect to form just the Kalamazoo River, it then flows through the rest of Calhoun County. It then enters Kalamazoo County and then Allegan County. When it reaches the towns of Saugatuck and Douglas it stops and enters Lake Michigan. In total the Kalamazoo River is 166 miles (267 km) long, and its watershed drains a total of 2,020 miles (3,250 km) and drains into 8 counties.

Geography[edit | edit source]

According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 723.76 square miles (1,874.5 km2), of which 706.60 square miles (1,830.1 km2) (or 97.63%) is land and 17.17 square miles (44.5 km2) (or 2.37%) is water.[3]

Adjacent counties[edit | edit source]

Highways[edit | edit source]

Interstates[edit | edit source]

US highways[edit | edit source]

  • US 127.svg US-127
  • Business plate.svg
    US 127.svg US-127 Business Route serves as a loop route through downtown Jackson.

Michigan state trunklines[edit | edit source]

Cities, villages, and townships[edit | edit source]


See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

Coordinates: 42°15′N 84°25′W / 42.25, -84.42

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