This article is based on the corresponding article in another wiki. For Familypedia purposes, it requires significantly more historical detail on phases of this location's development. The ideal article for a place will give the reader a feel for what it was like to live at that location at the time their relatives were alive there. Also desirable are links to organizations that may be repositories of genealogical information..
Please help to improve this page yourself if you can.

San Juan County, Washington
Map of Washington highlighting San Juan County
Location in the state of Washington (state)
Map of USA WA
Washington's location in the U.S.
Founded October 31, 1873
Seat Friday Harbor
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

621 sq mi (1,608 km²)
175 sq mi (453 km²)
446 sq mi (1,155 km²), 71.84%
 - (2010)
 - Density

90/sq mi (34.8/km²)

San Juan County is a county located in the Salish Sea in the far northwestern corner of the U.S. state of Washington. It comprises most of the San Juan Islands. The County is named after San Juan Island, which was reportedly named after St. John the Baptist (San Juan Bautista) by the Spanish explorer Francisco de Eliza, in 1791. The area that now constitutes San Juan County was part of Whatcom County until October 31, 1873.[1] The county seat and the county's only incorporated city is Friday Harbor, on San Juan Island. The 2010 Census reported a population of 15,769 for San Juan County. It is the smallest of Washington's 39 counties in land area.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 621 square miles (1,610 km2). Of this, 175 square miles (453 km2) is land and 446 square miles (1,160 km2) is water. The highest point in the county is Mount Constitution on Orcas Island at 2,407 feet (734 m) above sea level.

Geographic features Edit

Major islands Edit

There are 743 islands in the San Juan Island chain. Most of the county's population lives on the largest four islands, which are the only county islands served by the Washington State Ferries. The four largest islands are:

Physical characteristics Edit

San Juan County comprises 179 square miles (464 km2) of land mass. It is the smallest of Washington's 39 counties. San Juan County is a cluster of approximately 200 islands (172 of which are named). It has rugged, rocky shoreline and several mountains.

Adjacent counties Edit

It also shares a western border with the Capital Regional District, British Columbia, Canada.

National protected areasEdit


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1870 554
1880 948 71.1%
1890 2,072 118.6%
1900 2,928 41.3%
1910 3,603 23.1%
1920 3,605 0.1%
1930 3,097 −14.1%
1940 3,157 1.9%
1950 3,245 2.8%
1960 2,872 −11.5%
1970 3,856 34.3%
1980 7,838 103.3%
1990 10,035 28.0%
2000 14,077 40.3%
2010 15,769 12.0%

The census[2] of 2000 reported 14,077 people living in the county in 6,466 households and 4,015 families, resulting in a population density of 80 people per square mile (31/km²). The census reported 9,752 housing units at an average density of 56 per square mile (22/km²). The residents of the county reported their race as 94.99% White, 0.26% Black or African American, 0.83% Native American, 0.89% Asian, 0.09% Pacific Islander, 0.91% from other races, and 2.04% from two or more races. 2.40% of the population identified themselves as Hispanic or Latino of any race. In response to the census question concerning ancestry, 16.7% reported English ancestry; 15.0%, German; 11.6%, Irish; 5.7%, United States or American; 5.4%, French; and 5.0%, Norwegian.

Of the 6,466 households, 22.90% had children under the age of 18; 51.80% were married couples living together; 6.90% had a female householder with no husband present; 37.90% were not families; 30.60% were individuals; and 10.70% were individuals 65 years of age or older, living alone. The average household size was 2.16 persons and the average family size was 2.65.

19.10% of the county's population was under the age of 18; 4.50% ranged in age from 18-24; 21.70%, 25-44; 35.70%, 45-64; and 19.00%, 65 or older. The median age was 47 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.00 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $43,491, and the median income for a family was $51,835. Males had a median income of $36,250 versus $26,516 for females. The per capita income for the county was $30,603. About 6.00% of families and 9.20% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.40% of those under age 18 and 3.10% of those age 65 or over.

San Juan county has the highest per capita income in the state of Washington. Deer Harbor, located in the county, has a per capita income exceeding $100,000. Waldron Island, with a population of 104 in the 2000 census, is considered one of the most impoverished areas in Washington, with about 56% of the people living in poverty.

In a survey by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, San Juan County was ranked the healthiest in the state of Washington.[3]

Politics Edit

This county is usually even more liberal than the famously liberal King County, but does not have the reputation King County does because its population is so much smaller, and therefore its effect on elections much weaker. The only area of the County won by George W. Bush in 2004 was the Decatur Island/Blakely Island precinct, with just over 50 votes. Waldron Island's precinct voted 96.5% of the vote to John Kerry. In 2006, Maria Cantwell, the Democrat running for re-election to the U.S. Senate, won all precincts.[4]

Census-recognized communities Edit

Other communities Edit

History Edit

  • The San Juan Islands were the subject of a territorial dispute between Great Britain and the United States from 1846–1872, leading to the Pig War in 1859.

See alsoEdit

References Edit

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 48°34′N 122°58′W / 48.57, -122.97

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at San Juan County, Washington. 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.

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.