Lyon County (standard abbreviation: LY) is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 33,690. The county seat and largest city is Emporia. The county was named for General Nathaniel Lyon, who was killed at the Battle of Wilson's Creek in the Civil War.
In 1802, Spain returned most of the land to France, but keeping title to about 7,500 square miles. In 1803, most of the land for modern day Kansas was acquired by the United States from France as part of the 828,000 square mile Louisiana Purchase for 2.83 cents per acre.
In 1806, Zebulon Pike led the Pike expedition westward from St Louis, Missouri, of which part of their journey followed the Cottonwood River through Lyon County.
In 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized, then in 1861 Kansas became the 34th U.S. state. In 1862, Lyon County was established from the county formerly known as Breckinridge County.
As of the census of 2000, there were 35,935 people, 13,691 households, and 8,639 families residing in the county. The population density was 42 people per square mile (16/km²). There were 14,757 housing units at an average density of 17 per square mile (7/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 83.27% White, 2.27% Black or African American, 0.47% Native American, 2.04% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 9.79% from other races, and 2.16% from two or more races. 16.72% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 13,691 households out of which 32.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.80% were married couples living together, 8.40% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.90% were non-families. 28.50% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.51 and the average family size was 3.12.
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