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4 Cities and towns
5 External links
The county was formed in 1842 from Lincoln County. It was named for the Catawba tribe of Native Americans, who once inhabited the area.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,071 km² (414 mi²). 1,036 km² (400 mi²) of it is land and 35 km² (14 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 3.27% water.
As of the census2 of 2000, there are 141,685 people, 55,533 households, and 39,095 families residing in the county. The population density is 137/km² (354/mi²). There are 59,919 housing units at an average density of 58/km² (150/mi²). The racial makeup of the county is 84.99% White, 8.37% Black or African American, 0.26% Native American, 2.93% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 2.26% from other races, and 1.14% from two or more races. 5.57% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 55,533 households out of which 31.50% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.10% are married couples living together, 10.90% have a female householder with no husband present, and 29.60% are non-families. 24.60% of all households are made up of individuals and 9.10% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.51 and the average family size is 2.98.
In the county the population is spread out with 24.30% under the age of 18, 8.80% from 18 to 24, 31.10% from 25 to 44, 23.50% from 45 to 64, and 12.30% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 36 years. For every 100 females there are 97.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 94.70 males.
The median income for a household in the county is $40,536, and the median income for a family is $47,474. Males have a median income of $30,822 versus $23,352 for females. The per capita income for the county is $20,358. 9.10% of the population and 6.50% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 12.50% are under the age of 18 and 9.70% are 65 or older.