Monmouth, Oregon

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{city, population, household}
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{school, student, university}
{town, population, incorporate}

Monmouth (pronounced /ˈmɒnməθ/ is a city in Polk County, Oregon, United States. It was named for Monmouth, Illinois, whence its earliest settlers came. The population was 7,741 at the 2000 census, with an unofficial estimated population of 9,125 in 2006.[3] It is part of the Salem Metropolitan Statistical Area.



Monmouth was settled in 1853 by a group of pioneers who made a point of allocating 640 acres (2.6 km²) to build both a city and a "college under the auspices of the Christian Church" and proceeds from the sale of these lands were used to found Monmouth University.[4] By the early 1880s the college fell on hard times. In 1882, ownership was transferred to the State of Oregon and it was renamed Oregon State Normal School at Monmouth. It is now known as Western Oregon University.

For decades, Monmouth was a dry town that banned the sale of alcoholic beverages in supermarkets, restaurants and bars. Monmouth's status as the last dry town in Oregon was ended by a popular vote in the November 2002 election.[5] Spurred on by the closure of Monmouth's last grocery store, and a general decline of its retail sector, three local men (John Oberst, Paul Sieber, and Chuck Sheffield) led a referendum campaign to allow the sale of beer and wine. The measure passed 57-43%.


It is about 15 miles (24 km) west of Salem, Oregon on Oregon Route 99W.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 1.9 square miles (5.0 km²), all of it land.[6]


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 7,741 people, 2,757 households, and 1,488 families residing in the city. The population density was 4,004.3 people per square mile (1,548.6/km²). There were 2,934 housing units at an average density of 1,517.7/sq mi (587.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 85.67% White, 0.92% African American, 1.05% Native American, 2.04% Asian, 0.74% Pacific Islander, 6.21% from other races, and 3.37% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 9.73% of the population.

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