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Merced County, California
Merced County ca seal
Map of California highlighting Merced County
Location in the state of California
Map of USA CA
California's location in the U.S.
Founded 1855
Seat Merced
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

1,972 sq mi (5,107 km²)
1,929 sq mi (4,996 km²)
43 sq mi (111 km²), 2.19%
 - (2000)
 - Density

109/sq mi (42/km²)

Merced County (pronounced "Mer-SED"), is a county located in the Central Valley of the U.S. state of California, north of Fresno and southeast of San Jose. As of 2000 the population was 210,554. The county seat is Merced. The county is named after the Merced River.


Merced County was formed in 1855 from parts of Mariposa County. Parts of its territory were given to Fresno County in 1856.

The county derives its name from the Merced River, or El Río de Nuestra Señora de la Merced (River of Our Lady of Mercy); named in 1806 by an expedition, headed by Gabriel Moraga, which came upon it at the end of a hot dusty ride.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 5,107 km² (1,972 sq mi). 4,995 km² (1,929 sq mi) of it is land and 112 km² (43 sq mi) of it (2.19%) is water.

Cities and townsEdit

Cities over 10,000 populationEdit

Incorporated cities under 10,000 populationEdit

Unincorporated CommunitiesEdit

Adjacent countiesEdit

Transportation infrastructureEdit

Major highwaysEdit

Public transportationEdit


Merced Municipal Airport, located just southwest of downtown Merced, has a few commercial passenger flights. General aviation airports in the county include Castle Airport, Gustine Airport, and Los Banos Municipal Airport.


As of the census² of 2000, there were 210,554 people, 63,815 households, and 49,775 families residing in the county. The population density was 42/km² (109/sq mi). There were 68,373 housing units at an average density of 14/km² (36/sq mi). The racial makeup of the county was 56.21% White, 3.83% Black or African American, 1.19% Native American, 6.80% Asian, 0.19% Pacific Islander, 26.13% from other races, and 5.65% from two or more races. 45.34% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 55.1% spoke English, 35.3% Spanish, 3.2% Hmong, 2.9% Portuguese and 1.0% Panjabi as their first language.

There were 63,815 households out of which 45.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.8% were married couples living together, 14.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.0% were non-families. 17.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.25 and the average family size was 3.69.

In the county the population was spread out with 34.5% under the age of 18, 10.3% from 18 to 24, 27.9% from 25 to 44, 17.8% from 45 to 64, and 9.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 29 years. For every 100 females there were 99.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.6 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $35,532, and the median income for a family was $38,009. Males had a median income of $31,721 versus $23,911 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,257. About 16.9% of families and 21.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 28.4% of those under age 18 and 10.7% of those age 65 or over.

Politics Edit

Presidential election results
Year GOP DEM Others
2004 56.5% 32,773 42.3% 24,491 1.2% 696
2000 51.8% 26,102 45.1% 22,726 3.1% 1,590'
1996 44.4% 20,847 46.4% 21,786 9.2% 4,305
1992 36.5% 17,981 40.8% 20,133 22.7% 11,170
1988 51.2% 21,717 47.4% 20,105 1.4% 592
1984 58.8% 24,997 40.1% 17,012 1.1% 468
1980 48.8% 18,043 42.9% 15,886 8.3% 3,067
1976 46.1% 14,842 51.6% 16,637 2.3% 729
1972 54.3% 17,737 42.6% 13,914 3.1% 997
1968 40.9% 11,595 51.0% 14,453 8.1% 2,301
1964 31.2% 8,814 68.7% 19,431 0.1% 24
1960 43.4% 11,990 56.2% 15,545 0.4% 111

Merced is a Republican-leaning county in Presidential and congressional elections. The last Democrat to win a majority in the county was Jimmy Carter in 1976.

Merced is part of California's 18th congressional district, which is held by Democrat Dennis Cardoza. In the state legislature Merced is in the 17th Assembly district, which is held by Democrat Cathleen Galgiani, and the 12th Senate district, which is held by Republican Jeff Denham.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 37°11′N 120°43′W / 37.19, -120.71

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Merced County, California. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.

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