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The Name of Our County

10:16 PM · Jun 21, 2021

169 years ago, we were apparently trend setters. The county we live in is one of 12 counties in our Nation (CO, GA, IL, KS, MI, MS, NE, NV, OR, SD, WA, WI), with the very same name of "Douglas County". All are named after Stephen Arnold Douglas, a politician and lawyer from Illinois. He also was a congressional advocate for Oregon statehood. Known as “The Little Giant” because his political stature far exceeded his height of 5’4”. Additionally, there are three cities named for him as well (GA, UT, WY). That said, if you look closer you’ll see one location that stands out amongst all of these. Distinctively, the county in Oregon (33rd State) was the first to be given the “Douglas” name over two years before any other counties or cities (1852). At that time, Senator Douglas was only 11 years into his forceful 21 years in politics. Additionally, our Douglas County also holds the distinction of being the largest of the twelve counties in land area (5,071 sq. miles). The Douglas County nearest in size to ours (WA) is still 3,222 sq. miles smaller than ours. In fact, 9 of the other Douglas Counties “combined” are still smaller, in sq. miles, than our Douglas County. Notably, those early pioneers and politicians were very shrewd when they arranged to realign our borders to include the “entire” 111 mile stretch of the Great Umpqua River and all of its tributaries, from the Cascades to the Pacific. Even though we are the largest County in land area, we are number five in population, with an estimated 112,530. Among the 12, we pleasantly fall to tenth place in population density, with an average of about 22 people per sq. mile. Compare that with the most populous Douglas County (NE), with an average of about 1,685 people per sq. mile. #DouglasCountyOregon


Fascinating, thanks for sharing!

Jun 21, 2021