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4 Cities and towns
5 External links
Originally, Rowan County was a vast territory with an indefinite western boundary. Reductions in its extent began in 1770, when the eastern part of it was combined with the western part of Orange County to become Guilford County, North Carolina. In 1771 the northeastern part of what remained of Rowan County became Surry County. In 1777 the western part of Rowan County became Burke County. In 1788 the western part of the now much smaller Rowan County became Iredell County. In 1822 the eastern part of the still shrinking county became Davidson County. Finally, in 1836 the part of Rowan County north of the South Yadkin River became Davie County.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,357 km² (524 mi²). 1,324 km² (511 mi²) of it is land and 32 km² (13 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 2.40% water.
The county is divided into fourteen townships: Atwell, China Grove, Cleveland, Franklin, Gold Hill, Litaker, Locke, Morgan, Mount Ulla, Providence, Salisbury, Scotch Irish, Steele, and Unity.
As of the census2 of 2000, there are 130,340 people, 49,940 households, and 35,507 families residing in the county. The population density is 98/km² (255/mi²). There are 53,980 housing units at an average density of 41/km² (106/mi²). The racial makeup of the county is 80.02% White, 15.78% Black or African American, 0.33% Native American, 0.85% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 2.00% from other races, and 1.00% from two or more races. 4.12% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 49,940 households out of which 32.40% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.80% are married couples living together, 11.90% have a female householder with no husband present, and 28.90% are non-families. 24.70% of all households are made up of individuals and 10.20% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.52 and the average family size is 2.98.
In the county the population is spread out with 24.70% under the age of 18, 9.10% from 18 to 24, 29.80% from 25 to 44, 22.50% from 45 to 64, and 14.00% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 36 years. For every 100 females there are 97.60 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 95.30 males.
The median income for a household in the county is $37,494, and the median income for a family is $44,242. Males have a median income of $31,626 versus $23,437 for females. The per capita income for the county is $18,071. 10.60% of the population and 8.10% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 13.70% are under the age of 18 and 11.40% are 65 or older.