Malheur County, Oregon

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Malheur County (pronounced /mælˈhɪər/) is a county located in the southeast corner of the U.S. state of Oregon. It is included in the 8 county definition of Eastern Oregon. The county was named for Malheur River, which flows through it. As of 2000, the population was 31,615. Ontario is the largest city and the county seat is Vale.[1] The word "malheur" means misfortune in French.

Malheur County is part of the Ontario, OR–ID Micropolitan Statistical Area.



Malheur County was created February 17, 1887, from the southern portion of Baker County. It was first settled by miners and stockmen in the early 1860s. The discovery of gold in 1863 attracted further development, including settlements and ranches. Basques settled in the region in the 1890s and were mainly engaged in sheep raising.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 9,930 square miles (25,719 km²), of which 9,887 square miles (25,607 km²) is land and 43 square miles (111 km²) (0.43%) is water.

Adjacent counties

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