Washington Counties
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Washington Counties

There are thity-nine counties in the state of Washington. Washington was carved out of the western part of Washington Territory and admitted to the Union as the 42nd state in 1889. The first counties were created from unorganized territory in 1845.

Adams County, Washington

Adams County Education, Geography, and History

Adams County, Washington Courthouse

Adams County is a county located in the state of Washington. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 18,728. The county seat is at Ritzville, and its largest city is Othello. The county was formed out of Whitman County on November 28, 1883 and is named for the second President of the United States, John Adams.

Adams County comprises the Othello, WA Micropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Moses Lake-Othello, WA Combined Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Adams County Name

John Adams, the second president of the United States.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Adams County History

Adams County was organized March 1, 1836. A large tract of land lying between Allen and Randolph counties had been previously called Adams County, however, no organization had been effected.

The current county was formed out of Whitman County on November 28, 1883 and is named for the second President of the United States, John Adams.

Adams County is a predominantly rural county located in southeastern Washington, with Ritzville serving as county seat.


Adams County is an agricultural and livestock economic based region interspersed with pre-historic ice age flood channels, lakes and streams in a semi-arid upland steppe environment that offers a wide range of recreational activity.

 Agricultural pursuits include dry-land wheat farming, irrigated apple orchards, and field crops (primarily potatoes). The vegetable- and fruit-processing industry, especially potato processing and French fry manufacturing, provides most of the county's industrial employment. As of 2006, Adams County's population was 52 percent Hispanic, with most Hispanic residents being of Mexican heritage.

Industrial activity is related primarily to the vegetable and fruit processing industry with various support industries.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,930 square miles (4,998 km2), of which, 1,925 square miles (4,986 km2) of it is land and 5 square miles (12 km2) of it (0.25%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Lincoln County, Washington north
  • Whitman County, Washington east
  • Franklin County, Washington south
  • Grant County, Washington west


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