A Gazetteer for the United States and Canada

Bethel, Alaska

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Our Pages for Bethel ...

-profile   General information about Bethel
-nearby   What's in the neighborhood around Bethel
-census   Census information for Bethel
-tidbits   Tidbits and trivia about Bethel
-genealogy   Our Genealogy Helper for Bethel
-cemeteries   Cemeteries in the area of Bethel
-localpapers   Newspapers published in the immediate area of Bethel
-newspapers   Newspapers published in a broader area around Bethel
-summary   Summarized information
-map   Interactive map centered on Bethel
-tripmap   TripAdvisor Tourism pages
-misc   Miscellaneous information
-wishlist   Things we would like to know about Bethel
-glossary   This page...

Glossary and Definitions ...

Census Area for Bethel
The Area value provided by the US Census Bureau reflects their statistical (or sampling) requirements and it can be different than the geographic boundaries of Bethel. For example, if there is a cluster of people living just outside of the city's official boundary, the Census-defined area might be expanded to include that group.

At the time of the 2010 Census, the US Census gave a land area of 43.18 square miles [111.8 km²] and a water area of 5.52 square miles [14.3 km²], giving Bethel a total area of 48.71 square miles [126.1 km²].

It should be noted that the area given by the Census Bureau can change from one Census to the next. For example, the 2000 Census specified an area of 48.82 square miles [126.5 km²] for Bethel compared to the 48.71 square miles [126.1 km²] given in 2010.
Census Housing Unit
The US Census considers a Housing Unit to be a place where people live (whether occupied or temporarily vacant), such as a house, an apartment, a mobile home, or an area that is considered as a separate living quarter.

Separate living quarters (consisting of one or more rooms) are considered to be those places where people live, sleep and eat separately from others and that have access to the outside (either directly or by a shared hallway).

At the time of the 2010 Census, Bethel had 2,364 Housing Units.
Decennial Census
The US Constitution requires that a count of the country's population be conducted every 10 years. The Census is conducted on those years ending in '0' (eg- 1990, 2000, 2010). This is known as a 'Decennial' Census. The process of taking a Census is called an 'Enumeration'.

The count includes citizens, non-citizen legal residents, long-term non-citizen visitors and illegal immigrants.

The purpose of the Census is to provide information about the demographic and social characteristics of the people of the United States. The results of the Census goes to the federal, state and local governments to support their planning and administrative activities.

The first Census was conducted in 1790. The most recent Census was conducted in 2010. The next Decennial Census will be conducted in 2020.

By comparison, the Canadian Census is conducted once every 5 years and is called a 'Quinquennial' Census.
GNIS Codes
The function of the U.S. Board on Geographic Names (BGN) is to establish uniform names for geographic features (eg- communities, mountains, lakes, rivers, streams, etc). The BGN was created to address the problems caused by spelling and naming variations. BGN–accepted names are kept in a database called the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS), which is operated and maintained by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

A unique and permanent identifier has been assigned for each feature in the GNIS database. These names and identifiers are definitive.

Bethel has been given the GNIS Feature ID of '2419362'. Click here to see the GNIS Record for Bethel.
Although there are regional variations, a city that is incorporated (such as Bethel) is generally one with a charter from the State, defined boundaries and is governed by elected officials. By contrast, unincorporated communities usually exist by tradition, frequently with nebulous boundaries and without a recognized government.