Polk County Oregon

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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Polk County, Oregon residents think of their homes as "a county where good things happen." History bears them out. Created just before Christmas in 1845, the county was named for President James Polk, who signed the legislation approving the borders of the Oregon Territory. Independence--a Polk County, Oregon city--was the destination of many wagon trains that traversed the famous and often arduous Oregon Trail in the 1840s and later.

First settled by Hudson's Bay Company hunters and trappers as early as 1830, the county now encompasses about 745 square miles from the Willamette River to the Coast Range. The Polk County, Oregon population at the 2000 census numbered about 62,000, a 25-percent increase over 1990. That equates to about 84 people per square mile, considerably higher than the state average of 35, but definitely lower than other cities in the valley.

Education is an emphasis, particularly in view of Monmouth being home to Western Oregon University. Major industries include agriculture, forest products, manufacturing, and of course education. Median household income is about $43,000, above the state average. Median house value is about $143,000, below the state average.

Why Buy into Polk County, Oregon Property?

Polk County offers all the amenities as other Willamette Valley counties. These include a short hour's drive to Oregon's ruggedly beautiful Pacific coast, two mountain ranges running on either side of the valley, more than 50 covered bridges, more than 20 fine vineyards, and a rich history. Polk County is a marvelous place to call home and be hospitable. There's so much--from Crater Lake to the southwest, to the Columbia River Gorge to the north, to Hells Canyon to the east. No wonder that those in the East were so taken by the vivid imagery in the reports of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark on their expedition to the northwest in 1805!


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