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|Territory: May 7, 1800|
|Statehood: Dec 11, 1816|
|Borders: MI, IL, OH and KY|
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Today’s Indiana counties did not always exist in the present form. They went through many different changes in the space of a few short years. Indiana Counties were first formed while part of the Mississippi Territory, and after that the Indiana Territory.
Indiana Territorial Counties
The Northwest Territory was created on June 20, 1790 with 2 original counties, Knox and St Clair counties.
The Indiana Territory existed from May 7, 1800, until December 11, 1816. There were originally 5 Indiana counties when it was first organized as the Indiana Territory in 1800.
The oldest counties are generally in the south near the Ohio River, whereas newer ones were in the north in territory acquired later.
The State of Indiana entered the union as the 19th state on December 11, 1816.
Indiana Counties Today
Each county serves as the local level of government within its borders. County government in Indiana consists of two bodies, the county council and the commissioners.
County government in Indiana consists of two bodies, the county council and the commissioners.
Fun Facts about Indiana Counties
Counties by Name
Many Indiana counties are named for
- Founding Fathers and personalities of the American Revolutionary War
- the War of 1812 and Battle of Tippecanoe;
- early leaders of Indiana Territory and Indiana
- rrounding states like Michigan and Kentucky
- Native American tribes and geographical features
The average land area is 396 square miles. According to the Constitution of Indiana, no county may be created of less than 400 square miles, nor may any county smaller than this be further reduced in size, which precludes any new counties
Counties by Year
- Knox County Counties was the first created on June 6, 1790.
- Newton County was the last county created on December 8, 1859.
County Size Facts
- Allen County (657 sq mi) is the largest county in Indiana.
- Ohio County (86 sq mi) is the smallest county in Indiana.
County Population Facts
Average population of Indiana counties 70,476
- Ohio County (6,128) is the least populated county in Indiana.
- Marion County (903,393) is the most populated county in Indiana.
- 54 counties that have 30,000 or more people;
- 17 counties have populations exceeding 100,000
- 5 counties exceed 250,000
- 4 counties have fewer than 10,000 people
Indiana City Facts
Indiana’s 10 largest cities (2016 est.) are:
- Indianapolis (863,002) is in Marion County
- Fort Wayne (265,904) is in Allen County
- Evansville (118,930) is in Vanderburgh County
- South Bend (102,245) is in St. Joseph County
- Carmel (92,198) is in Hamilton County
- Fishers (91,832) is in Hamilton County
- Bloomington (85,071) is in Monroe County
- Hammond (76,618) is in Lake County
- Gary (76,008) is in Lake County
- Lafayette (72,390) is in Tippecanoe County
Boundary Changes of Indiana Counties from 1758-1932
This Interactive Map of Indiana Counties show the historical boundaries, names, organization, and attachments of every county, extinct county and unsuccessful county proposal from 1758 to 1932.
List of Indiana Counties
|County||Created||Created From||Named For||County Seat||Notes|
List of Old Former / Extinct Indiana Counties
Indiana contains some counties that no longer exist because they were discontinued, renamed or merged with another county. These are important for genealogy research purposes.
The below counties formerly within the area of the State of Indiana no longer exist:
Delaware New Purchase
Adams New Purchase
Created on January 26, 1827 from Delaware New Purchase.
Adams New Purchase eliminated on January 15, 1844, remaining territory used to create Tipton County.
Newton County (Old), Indiana
Randolph County (Old), Northwest Territory
Created on October 5, 1795 from the southern half of what was St. Clair County. On July 4, 1800, it became a part of Indiana Territory.
Randolph County became part of Illinois Territory on March 1, 1809 and was eliminated from Indiana Territory.
Richardville County, Indiana
Created on January 15, 1844 from Unorganized land, not fully organized, attached to Carroll, Cass and Miami counties for administrative and judicial purposes. It was name honored Jean Baptiste Richardville, a chief of the Miami.
St Clair County, Northwest Territory
Created on June 20, 1790 from Unorganized land by Northwest Territory as one of 2 original counties. St Clair County became part of the Indiana Territory in July 4, 1800.
St Clair County became part of Illinois Territory on March 1, 1809 and was eliminated from Indiana Territory.
Wabash New Purchase, Indiana
Wabash New Purchase abolished on February 7, 1835, remaining territory lost to the creatrion of Jasper County. Some early records may be found in Monroe, Owen, Vigo and Parke Counties
Wayne County (Old), Northwest Territory
Wayne County (Old), Northwest Territory, was eliminated when the Indiana Territory was created from Northwest Territory on July 4, 1800.
Wayne County (Old), Indiana Territory
Wayne County (Old), Indiana Territory, was eliminated when the Michigan Territory was created from Indiana Territory on June 30, 1805.