Wabaunsee County (standard abbreviation: WB) is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 7,053. Its county seat is Alma. The county was created by the territorial legislature of Kansas Territory on March 25, 1859, and was named for a chief of the Potawatomi Indians.
In 1854, the Kansas Territory was organized and Wabaunsee County was created by the territorial legislature on March 25, 1859. The name used since 1859 is derived from the Potawatomi "Wah-bon-seh", meaning "dawn of day" literally, and it was the name of the chief of the Potawatomi Indians. Originally, the county was named Richardson, after William P. Richardson, a congressman from Illinois, who introduced the first Kansas and Nebraska Bill in the House of Representatives, which made certain Indian lands territories in 1854.
Also in 1854, the Beecher Bible and Rifle Church was established by a group of free-staters, who had rifles shipped to the church to be used in the free-state effort in boxes marked Bibles. Captain William Mitchell, Jr., a seaman who joined the Beecher Bible and Rifle Colony that settled in Wabaunsee, played an important role in the county settlement and with the underground railroad.
As of the census of 2000, there were 6,885 people, 2,633 households, and 1,958 families residing in the county. The population density was 9 people per square mile (3/km²). There were 3,033 housing units at an average density of 4 per square mile (1/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 97.24% White, 0.46% Black or African American, 0.49% Native American, 0.15% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.60% from other races, and 1.00% from two or more races. 1.86% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 2,633 households out of which 33.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 64.30% were married couples living together, 6.30% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.60% were non-families. 23.00% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.01.
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