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Spencer County, Indiana
Spencer County Courthouse in Rockport
Spencer County courthouse in Rockport
Map of Indiana highlighting Spencer County
Location in the state of Indiana
Map of USA IN
Indiana's location in the U.S.
Founded January 10, 1818
Named for Spier Spencer
Seat Rockport
Largest town Santa Claus
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

401.43 sq mi (1,040 km²)
396.74 sq mi (1,028 km²)
4.68 sq mi (12 km²), 1.17%
 - (2010)
 - Density

53/sq mi (20.29/km²)
Congressional district 8th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Footnotes: Indiana county number 74

Spencer County is a county located in the U.S. state of Indiana. As of the 2010 census, the population was 20,952.[1] The county seat is Rockport.[2]


Spencer County was formed in 1818 from parts of Warrick County and Perry County. It was named for Captain Spier Spencer, killed at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811.[3]

The Spencer County courthouse was built in 1921. It is the fifth courthouse to serve the county.[4]

Abraham Lincoln lived in Spencer County from 1816 to 1830, between the ages seven and twenty-one. His family moved to Illinois in 1830. The Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial is located at the site of the Lincoln family farm.

Other attractions in the county include the town of Santa Claus and Holiday World & Splashin' Safari

Saint Meinrad Archabbey is located at the northeastern corner of Spencer County.


According to the 2010 census, the county has a total area of 401.43 square miles (1,039.7 km2), of which 396.74 square miles (1,027.6 km2) (or 98.83%) is land and 4.68 square miles (12.1 km2) (or 1.17%) is water.[5]

Cities and towns (Zip Code)Edit

Unincorporated townsEdit


Adjacent countiesEdit

Major highwaysEdit

National protected areaEdit

Climate and weather Edit

Climate chart for Rockport, Indiana
temperatures in °Cprecipitation totals in mm
source: The Weather Channel[6]

In recent years, average temperatures in Rockport have ranged from a low of 24 °F (−4 °C) in January to a high of 91 °F (33 °C) in July, although a record low of −23 °F (−30.6 °C) was recorded in January 1994 and a record high of 107 °F (42 °C) was recorded in June 1944. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 3.01 inches (76 mm) in October to 4.78 inches (121 mm) in May.[6]


The county government is a constitutional body, and is granted specific powers by the Constitution of Indiana, and by the Indiana Code.

County Council: The county council is the legislative branch of the county government and controls all the spending and revenue collection in the county. Representatives are elected from county districts. The council members serve four-year terms. They are responsible for setting salaries, the annual budget, and special spending. The council also has limited authority to impose local taxes, in the form of an income and property tax that is subject to state level approval, excise taxes, and service taxes.[7][8]

Board of Commissioners: The executive body of the county is made of a board of commissioners. The commissioners are elected county-wide, in staggered terms, and each serves a four-year term. One of the commissioners, typically the most senior, serves as president. The commissioners are charged with executing the acts legislated by the council, collecting revenue, and managing the day-to-day functions of the county government.[7][8]

Court: The county maintains a small claims court that can handle some civil cases. The judge on the court is elected to a term of four years and must be a member of the Indiana Bar Association. The judge is assisted by a constable who is also elected to a four-year term. In some cases, court decisions can be appealed to the state level circuit court.[8]

County Officials: The county has several other elected offices, including sheriff, coroner, auditor, treasurer, recorder, surveyor, and circuit court clerk. Each of these elected officers serves a term of four years and oversees a different part of county government. Members elected to county government positions are required to declare party affiliations and to be residents of the county.[8]

Spencer County is part of Indiana's 9th congressional district and is represented in Congress by Republican Todd Young.


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1820 1,882
1830 3,196 69.8%
1840 6,305 97.3%
1850 8,616 36.7%
1860 14,556 68.9%
1870 17,998 23.6%
1880 22,122 22.9%
1890 22,060 −0.3%
1900 22,407 1.6%
1910 20,676 −7.7%
1920 18,400 −11.0%
1930 16,713 −9.2%
1940 16,211 −3.0%
1950 16,174 −0.2%
1960 16,074 −0.6%
1970 17,134 6.6%
1980 19,361 13.0%
1990 19,490 0.7%
2000 20,391 4.6%
2010 20,952 2.8%
Est. 2013 20,944 2.7%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]
1790-1960[10] 1900-1990[11]
1990-2000[12] 2010-2013[1]

As of the census[13] of 2000, there were 20,391 people, 7,569 households, and 5,752 families residing in the county. The population density was 51 people per square mile (20/km²). There were 8,333 housing units at an average density of 21 per square mile (8/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.70% White, 0.60% Black or African American, 0.22% Native American, 0.19% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.74% from other races, and 0.53% from two or more races. 1.49% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 40.6% were of German, 21.7% American, 8.9% English and 8.2% Irish ancestry according to Census 2000.

There were 7,569 households out of which 35.40% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.00% were married couples living together, 7.20% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.00% were non-families. 20.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.65 and the average family size was 3.07.

In the county the population was spread out with 26.50% under the age of 18, 7.30% from 18 to 24, 29.10% from 25 to 44, 24.10% from 45 to 64, and 13.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 100.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $42,451, and the median income for a family was $49,123. Males had a median income of $35,125 versus $22,787 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,000. About 4.80% of families and 6.90% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.90% of those under age 18 and 7.80% of those age 65 or over.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Spencer County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-09-25. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ De Witt Clinton Goodrich & Charles Richard Tuttle (1875). An Illustrated History of the State of Indiana. Indiana: R. S. Peale & co.. pp. 572. 
  4. ^ Wissing, Douglas (Mar 1, 2001). Indiana. Globe Pequot. pp. 24. Retrieved 16 October 2013. 
  5. ^ "Census 2010 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-10-10. 
  6. ^ a b "Monthly Averages for Rockport, Indiana". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2011-01-27. 
  7. ^ a b Indiana Code. "Title 36, Article 2, Section 3". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  8. ^ a b c d Indiana Code. "Title 2, Article 10, Section 2". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  9. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 10, 2014. 
  13. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 

Coordinates: 38°01′N 87°01′W / 38.01, -87.01

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