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The Commemorative
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The Commemorative Quarter for North Carolina

The 2000 Census showed that McDowell County had a population of 42,151 people. This represented 0.52% of the total population of North Carolina, making it the state's 57th most populous county (out of 100 counties).

From the Census Estimates for 2009<1>, McDowell had a population of 43,988 people. This is an increase of 4.36% since the 2000 Census.

The following table shows the recent changes in population. Other than 2000, the population counts have been estimated by the Census Bureau.

Since 2000
Year-to-Year Change
201044,996+6.75%+2.29% since 2009
200943,988+4.36%+0.17% since 2008
200843,912+4.18%+0.73% since 2007
200743,593+3.42%+0.61% since 2006
200643,328+2.79%+0.5% since 2005
200543,113+2.28%+0.43% since 2004
200442,927+1.84%+0.17% since 2003
200342,856+1.67%+0.41% since 2002
200142,676+1.25%+1.25% since 2000
200042,151The Last Census

McDowell County had 18,377 Housing Units<2> at the time of the 2000 Census.

The 2000 Census shows that McDowell County has a total area<3> of 446.4 square miles [1,156 km²]. Of this total, 441.7 square miles [1,143 km²] of the area is land, with the balance (1.06%) being water (4.73 square miles [12.26 km²]).

Using the above population and land area values, McDowell County had a population density of 95.4 people per square mile [36.85 people/km²], making it the state's 53rd most densely populated county (out of 100 counties).

US Census QuickFacts

The Census Bureau has created documents containing demographic information that are called QuickFacts. A QuickFact that is specific to McDowell County is available. The QuickFact also contains a comparison between McDowell and the state of North Carolina.

Click here for the McDowell County QuickFact (QF-37111).

Below are the counties that adjoin and form the boundaries of McDowell County. A link to their specific Census QuickFact has been provided.

(2009 Est.)
(2000 Census)
Change in
AveryQF-37011   N17,93217,1674.46%
BuncombeQF-37021   W231,452206,33012.18%
BurkeQF-37023   E89,54889,1480.45%
MitchellQF-37121   N15,63415,687-0.34%
RutherfordQF-37161   S63,41562,8990.82%
YanceyQF-37199   NW18,54817,7744.35%

Other Roadside Stops ...

About North Carolina

Cities, Towns and Villages of North Carolina

Off-the-Road Links ...

U.S. Census Bureau
Census QuickFact for McDowell County

Footnotes ...

<1>On a yearly basis, the US Census Bureau creates an estimate of the county's population. Keep in mind that this is an estimate and not an actual count. The last physical count was the 2000 Census and the next count will be for the 2010 Census.

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<2>A Housing Unit is a broad term for those places 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).

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<3>The area value has been supplied by the US Census Bureau and it can be different than the geographic boundaries of McDowell. The value given by the Census Bureau reflects their statistical (or sampling) requirements.

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<4>All Quarter-dollar coin images from the United States Mint.

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