Missouri Counties
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Missouri Counties

Missouri has one hundred and fourteen counties and one independent city. St. Louis City is separate from St. Louis County and is referred to as a "city not within a county." Following the Louisiana Purchase and the admittance of Louisiana into the United States in 1812, five counties were formed out of the Missouri Territory at the first general assembly. Most subsequent counties were apportioned from these five original counties.

Iron County, Missouri

Iron County Education, Geography, and HistoryIron County, Missouri Courthouse

Iron County is a county located in the Lead Belt region in the state of Missouri. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 10,630. The largest city and county seat is Ironton.Iron County was officially organized on February 17, 1857, and was named after the abundance of iron ore found within its borders

Etymology - Origin of Iron County Name

Named for abundant iron ore


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

History of Iron County

Organized February 17, 1857 and formed of sections of St. Francois, Madison, Washington, Dent, Reynolds, and Wayne counties. It is bounded on the north by Washington, Crawford and St. Francois counties, on the east by St. Francois, Madison, and Wayne counties, on the south by Reynolds and Wayne counties, on the west by Reynolds, Dent, and Crawford counties. Named from its principal mineral. (HIST. S.E. MISSOURI 1888, 178; Conard 1901, III, 385, 387)

Source: Zimmer, Gertrude M. "Place Names Of Five Southeast Counties Of Missouri." M.A. thesis., University of Missouri-Columbia, 1944.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 552 square miles (1,430 km2), of which 550 square miles (1,400 km2) is land and 1.8 square miles (4.7 km2) (0.3%) is water.

Iron County includes the 6-mile (9.7 km)-long, 2-mile (3.2 km)-wide Arcadia Valley, the site of Pilot Knob, Ironton, and Arcadia, communities established by immigrants in the 19th Century. The valley is surrounded by the Saint Francois Mountains of the Ozarks Plateau. Iron County is also home to dozens of mountains, including the 1,772-foot (540 m) Taum Sauk Mountain, the highest point in Missouri.

The county is home to a number of state parks and historical sites including Taum Sauk Mountain State Park, Elephant Rocks State Park and Fort Davidson State Historic Site as well as 96,047 acres (390 km2) of Mark Twain National Forest.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Washington County (north)
  • St. Francois County (northeast)
  • Madison County (east)
  • Wayne County (southeast)
  • Reynolds County (southwest)
  • Dent County (west)
  • Crawford County (northwest)


Of adults 25 years of age and older in Iron County, 65.2% possesses a high school diploma or higher while 8.4% holds a bachelor's degree or higher as their highest educational attainment.

Public schools

Arcadia Valley School District - Ironton
Iron County C-4 School District - Viburnum
South Iron County R-I School District - Annapolis

Vocational/technical schools

Arcadia Valley Career Technical Center - Ironton - (09-12)

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