Monroe County, Michigan

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Monroe County is a county in the U.S. state of Michigan. According to a 2008 U.S. Census Bureau estimate, the population is 152,949.[1] The largest city and county seat is Monroe.[2] The U.S. Census Bureau defines all of Monroe County as conterminous with the Monroe Metropolitan Area. In July 2008, the Census Bureau estimated the county metropolitan population at 152,949 – the 260th largest of the 363 metropolitan area in the United States.[3] Monroe County is also officially part of the larger Detroit–Ann Arbor–Flint CSA and sometimes unofficially included as a northerly extension of the Toledo Metropolitan Area. Monroe County was established as the second county (after Wayne County) in the Michigan Territory in 1817 and was named for then-President James Monroe.[4]



Before the county’s formation, the primary settlement was Frenchtown, which was settled in as early as 1784 along the banks of the River Raisin. The small plot of land was given to the early French settlers by the Potawatomi Native Americans, and the area was claimed for New France. The settlement of Frenchtown and the slight northerly settlement of Sandy Creek drew in a total of about 100 inhabitants. During the War of 1812, the area was the site of the Battle of Frenchtown, which was the worst American defeat in the war and remains the deadliest conflict ever on Michigan soil. The site of the battle is now part of the River Raisin National Battlefield Park.[5]

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