Hancock County, Illinois
Hancock County is a county in the U. S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 19,104, its county seat is Carthage, its largest city is Hamilton. The county is made up of rural towns with many farmers. Hancock County is part of IA-IL-MO Micropolitan Statistical Area. Hancock County was part of the "Military Tract" set aside by Congress to reward veterans of the War of 1812. Actual settlement of the interior of the county was delayed by concerns about hostile American Indians. After their defeat in the Blackhawk War in 1832, settlement proceeded quickly. Hancock County was formed, on January 1825, out of Pike County, it was named in honor of John Hancock. For a brief period in the 1840s Hancock had one of Illinois' most populous cities: Nauvoo, headquarters for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints; the movement's founder Joseph Smith was killed in the county seat of Carthage in 1844. Most Mormons left Hancock County in the 1840s. Today, Latter Day Saints come in increasing numbers to important Latter Day Saint sites in Hancock County for vacation and for religious pilgrimage.
The original courthouse was at Montebello. Montebello no longer was between Nauvoo and Hamilton. In 1833 the state commissioned the formation of the county seat at Carthage, centrally located but not well developed. A log cabin was built to serve as the courthouse and served that purpose until 1839 when the second Carthage Courthouse was built; the original log cabin continued to serve as a school and other purposes until 1945 when it was removed. The second courthouse cost $3,700 to build and served from 1839 until 1906, it served as a location for Stephen A. Douglas and Abraham Lincoln to speak to residents as they were running against each other for the US Senate. In 1906 it was removed to make room for the current courthouse; the current courthouse was dedicated October 21, 1908. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 814 square miles, of which 794 square miles is land and 21 square miles is water. In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Carthage have ranged from a low of 13 °F in January to a high of 87 °F in July, although a record low of −30 °F was recorded in February 1905 and a record high of 113 °F was recorded in August 1934.
Average monthly precipitation ranged from 1.47 inches in January to 4.58 inches in May. U. S. Highway 136 Illinois Route 9 Illinois Route 61 Illinois Route 94 Illinois Route 96 Illinois Route 336 Henderson County - northeast McDonough County - east Schuyler County - southeast Adams County - south Lewis County, Missouri - southwest Clark County, Missouri - west Lee County, Iowa - northwest As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 19,104 people, 8,040 households, 5,427 families residing in the county; the population density was 24.1 inhabitants per square mile. There were 9,274 housing units at an average density of 11.7 per square mile. The racial makeup of the county was 98.0% white, 0.3% black or African American, 0.2% Asian, 0.2% American Indian, 0.1% Pacific islander, 0.3% from other races, 0.9% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.0% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 34.7% were German, 13.8% were English, 13.2% were American, 12.1% were Irish.
Of the 8,040 households, 27.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.3% were married couples living together, 8.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 32.5% were non-families, 28.2% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 2.85. The median age was 44.6 years. The median income for a household in the county was $42,857 and the median income for a family was $55,162. Males had a median income of $41,609 versus $27,648 for females; the per capita income for the county was $22,885. About 8.9% of families and 12.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.8% of those under age 18 and 9.9% of those age 65 or over. Hancock County is in Illinois's 18th Congressional District and is represented by Republican Davin LaHood. For the Illinois House of Representatives, the county is in the 94th district and is represented by Republican Randy Frese; the county is in the 47th district of the Illinois Senate, is represented by Republican Jil Tracy.
In presidential elections, Hancock County favors Republican candidates, having voted for Democratic presidential candidates only four times during the period of 1940 to 2016. Carthage Dallas City Hamilton La Harpe Nauvoo Warsaw Bentley Hancock County is divided into twenty-four townships: National Register of Historic Places listings in Hancock County, Illinois Center for Hancock County History Hancock County, Illinois, USA
2010 United States Census
The 2010 United States Census is the twenty-third and most recent United States national census. National Census Day, the reference day used for the census, was April 1, 2010; the census was taken via mail-in citizen self-reporting, with enumerators serving to spot-check randomly selected neighborhoods and communities. As part of a drive to increase the count's accuracy, 635,000 temporary enumerators were hired; the population of the United States was counted as 308,745,538, a 9.7% increase from the 2000 Census. This was the first census in which all states recorded a population of over half a million, as well as the first in which all 100 largest cities recorded populations of over 200,000; as required by the United States Constitution, the U. S. census has been conducted every 10 years since 1790. The 2000 U. S. Census was the previous census completed. Participation in the U. S. Census is required by law in Title 13 of the United States Code. On January 25, 2010, Census Bureau Director Robert Groves inaugurated the 2010 Census enumeration by counting World War II veteran Clifton Jackson, a resident of Noorvik, Alaska.
More than 120 million census forms were delivered by the U. S. Post Office beginning March 15, 2010; the number of forms mailed out or hand-delivered by the Census Bureau was 134 million on April 1, 2010. Although the questionnaire used April 1, 2010 as the reference date as to where a person was living, an insert dated March 15, 2010 included the following printed in bold type: "Please complete and mail back the enclosed census form today." The 2010 Census national mail participation rate was 74%. From April through July 2010, census takers visited households that did not return a form, an operation called "non-response follow-up". In December 2010, the U. S. Census Bureau delivered population information to the U. S. President for apportionment, in March 2011, complete redistricting data was delivered to states. Identifiable information will be available in 2082; the Census Bureau did not use a long form for the 2010 Census. In several previous censuses, one in six households received this long form, which asked for detailed social and economic information.
The 2010 Census used only a short form asking ten basic questions: How many people were living or staying in this house, apartment, or mobile home on April 1, 2010? Were there any additional people staying here on April 1, 2010 that you did not include in Question 1? Mark all that apply: Is this house, apartment, or mobile home – What is your telephone number? What is Person 1's name? What is Person 1's sex? What is Person 1's age and Person 1's date of birth? Is Person 1 of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin? What is Person 1's race? Does Person 1 sometimes live or stay somewhere else? The form included space to repeat all of these questions for up to twelve residents total. In contrast to the 2000 census, an Internet response option was not offered, nor was the form available for download. Detailed socioeconomic information collected during past censuses will continue to be collected through the American Community Survey; the survey provides data about communities in the United States on a 1-year or 3-year cycle, depending on the size of the community, rather than once every 10 years.
A small percentage of the population on a rotating basis will receive the survey each year, no household will receive it more than once every five years. In June 2009, the U. S. Census Bureau announced. However, the final form did not contain a separate "same-sex married couple" option; when noting the relationship between household members, same-sex couples who are married could mark their spouses as being "Husband or wife", the same response given by opposite-sex married couples. An "unmarried partner" option was available for couples; the 2010 census cost $13 billion $42 per capita. Operational costs were $5.4 billion under the $7 billion budget. In December 2010 the Government Accountability Office noted that the cost of conducting the census has doubled each decade since 1970. In a detailed 2004 report to Congress, the GAO called on the Census Bureau to address cost and design issues, at that time, had estimated the 2010 Census cost to be $11 billion. In August 2010, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced that the census operational costs came in under budget.
Locke credited the management practices of Census Bureau director Robert Groves, citing in particular the decision to buy additional advertising in locations where responses lagged, which improved the overall response rate. The agency has begun to rely more on questioning neighbors or other reliable third parties when a person could not be reached at home, which reduced the cost of follow-up visits. Census data for about 22% of U. S. househol
Des Moines County, Iowa
Des Moines County is a county located in the U. S. state of Iowa. As of the 2010 census, the population was 40,325; the county seat is Burlington. It is one of Iowa's two original counties along with Dubuque County. Des Moines County is part of the IA -- IL Micropolitan Statistical Area. Des Moines County should not be confused with the city of Des Moines, the capital of Iowa. Des Moines County sits on Iowa's eastern border alongside the Mississippi River; the city of Des Moines is in Polk County in south-central Iowa. Both places derive their name from the Des Moines River, which flows through the city of Des Moines and flowed through the county; when the county was divided early in Iowa's history, the river ended up further west, forming the border between Lee County and the state of Missouri. At an extra session of the Sixth Legislative Assembly of Michigan Territory held in September, 1834, the Iowa District was divided into two counties by running a line due west from the lower end of Rock Island in the Mississippi River.
The territory north of this line was named Dubuque County, all south of it was Demoine County. It was named after the Des Moines River. From July 3, 1836 until July 3, 1838, Des Moines County was part of Wisconsin Territory; the county underwent various border changes during this time. July 4, 1838, the named county became part of Iowa Territory; the current Des Moines County Court House was completed in 1940. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 430 square miles, of which 416 square miles is land and 14 square miles is water; the Mississippi River forms the east border. U. S. Highway 34 U. S. Highway 61 The Southeast Iowa Regional Airport, is located about five miles south of Burlington. Commercial service is provided through Air Choice One; this service offers two weekday daily flights to St. Louis and Chicago, while offering single flights on weekends. Louisa County Hancock County, Illinois Henderson County, Illinois Lee County Henry County The 2010 census recorded a population of 40,325 in the county, with a population density of 96.9002/sq mi.
There were 18,535 housing units, of which 17,003 were occupied. As of the 2000 census, there were 42,351 people, 17,270 households, 11,536 families residing in the county; the population density was 102 people per square mile. There were 18,643 housing units at an average density of 45 per square mile; the racial makeup of the county was 93.69% White, 3.57% Black or African American, 0.25% Native American, 0.59% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.68% from other races, 1.18% from two or more races. 1.75% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 17,270 households out of which 29.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.70% were married couples living together, 10.50% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.20% were non-families. 28.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.60% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.94. In the county, the population was spread out with 24.40% under the age of 18, 8.50% from 18 to 24, 26.10% from 25 to 44, 24.30% from 45 to 64, 16.70% who were 65 years of age or older.
The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 93.50 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.30 males. The median income for a household in the county was $36,790, the median income for a family was $45,089. Males had a median income of $34,880 versus $22,530 for females; the per capita income for the county was $19,701. About 8.20% of families and 10.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.30% of those under age 18 and 7.40% of those age 65 or over. Burlington Danville Mediapolis Middletown West Burlington Beaverdale Augusta Dodgeville Kingston Sperry Yarmouth The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Des Moines County.† county seat Prior to 1964, Des Moines County was a Republican county, only backing four Democratic Party presidential candidates from 1896 to 1960. Since 1964, it has only backed two Republican Party candidates for president, Richard Nixon in his statewide & national landslide, & Donald Trump in 2016, who swung the county by a margin of over 25 points from its 2012 result.
National Register of Historic Places listings in Des Moines County, Iowa Antrobus, Augustine M. History of Des Moines County and its People: Illustrated: Volume 1. Chicago: S. J. Clarke Publishing Company. Retrieved 2014-04-20. Antrobus, Augustine M. History of Des Moines County and its People: Illustrated: Volume 2. Chicago: S. J. Clarke Publishing Company. Retrieved 2014-04-20. County Government website
Fort Madison, Iowa
Fort Madison is a city and a county seat of Lee County, United States along with Keokuk. Of Iowa's 99 counties, Lee County is the only one with two county seats; the population was 11,051 at the 2010 census. Located along the Mississippi River in the state's southeast corner, it lies between small bluffs along one of the widest portions of the river. Fort Madison was founded at the location of the first U. S. military fort in the upper Mississippi region. A replica of the fort stands along the river. Sheaffer Pens were made in Fort Madison for many years; the city is the location of the Iowa State Penitentiary—the state's maximum security prison for men. Fort Madison is the Mississippi river station stop for Amtrak's Southwest Chief. Fort Madison has the last remaining double swing-span bridge on the Mississippi River, the Fort Madison Toll Bridge, it has a similar level for trains. The Fort Madison Downtown Commercial Historic District is a collection of well-preserved historic storefronts from the late 19th century.
Along with this is the Park-to-Park Residential Historic District. The Historic Park to Park District is a seven block long, three block wide section of homes that represent the Gothic and Tudor era. With a rich variety of architectural styles like Gothic Revival, Second Empire, Eastlake Stick, Richardson Romanesque, Queen Anne, Tudor. With two of the six parks within the District, it is on the National Historic Registry. The city of Fort Madison was established around the site of the historic Fort Madison, the first permanent U. S. military fortification on the Upper Mississippi. Fort Madison was the site of Black Hawk's first battle against U. S. troops, the only real War of 1812 battle fought west of the Mississippi. It was the location of the first U. S. military cemetery in the upper Midwest. The fort was named for James Madison, fourth President of the United States. Fort Madison was one of three posts established by the U. S. Army to establish control over the newly acquired Louisiana Purchase territories.
Fort Madison was built to control trade and pacify Native Americans in the Upper Mississippi River region. The other two posts were Fort Belle Fontaine near St. Louis, which controlled the mouth of the Missouri, Fort Osage, near what is now Kansas City, which controlled trade with western Native American tribes. A disputed 1804 treaty with the Sauk and affiliated tribes led to the U. S. claim of parts of what is now Iowa. To establish control, the U. S. Army set out to construct a post near the mouth of the Des Moines River, a major trading route into the interior of Iowa. Not finding suitable land near the mouth of the Des Moines, the expedition considered land near Quashquame's Sauk and Meskwaki village at the head of the Des Moines Rapids, a choke point of trade and transportation on the Upper Mississippi below modern Montrose. Again, this land was not considered suitable for a fort; the Army settled on a location several miles upstream at. First called Fort Belleview, this post was soon deemed inadequate.
It was poorly situated at the base of a bluff next to a deep ravine, areas from which enemies could safely fire at the fort. Trade led to resentment among so-called "Indians," the Sauk. Black Hawk lamented over the new fort, disparaged its construction in his autobiography: A number of people went down to see what was going on, myself among them. On our arrival we found; the soldiers were busily engaged in cutting timber, I observed that they took their arms with them when they went to the woods. The whole party acted; the chiefs held a council with the officers, or head men of the party, which I did not attend, but understood from them that the war chief had said that they were building homes for a trader, coming there to live, would sell us goods cheap, that the soldiers were to remain to keep him company. We were pleased at this information and hoped that it was all true, but we were not so credulous as to believe that all these buildings were intended for the accommodation of a trader. Being distrustful of their intentions, we were anxious for them to leave off building and go back down the river.
—Black Hawk, Autobiography Almost from the beginning, the fort was attacked by Sauk and other tribes. U. S. troops were harassed when they left the fort, in April 1809 an attempted storming of the fort was stopped only by threat of cannon fire. During its existence, several improvements were made to the fort, including reinforcing the stockade and making it higher, extending the fort to a nearby bluff to provide cover from below, constructing of additional blockhouses outside the stockade; these improvements could not compensate for the poor location of the fort, it was again attacked in March 1812, was the focus of a coordinated siege in the following September. The September siege was intense, the fort was nearly overrun. Significant damage resulted to fort-related buildings, the attack was only stopped when cannon fire destroyed a fortified Indian position. Black Hawk participated in the siege, claimed to have shot the fort's flag down; as the War of 1812 expanded to the frontier, British-allied Sauk and other tribes began a determined effort to push out the Americans and reclaim control of the upper Mississippi.
Beginning in July 1813, attacks on troops outside the fort led to anot
Henderson County, Illinois
Henderson County is a county located in the U. S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 United States Census, it has a population of 7,331, its county seat is Oquawka. Henderson County is part of the IA -- IL Micropolitan Statistical Area. Henderson County was formed in 1841 from a portion of Warren County, it was named for Henderson County, named for Richard Henderson, founder of the Transylvania Company, an early attempt to organize what became Kentucky around 1775. According to the US Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 395 square miles, of which 379 square miles is land and 16 square miles is water. In recent years, average temperatures in the county seat of Oquawka have ranged from a low of 15 °F in January to a high of 85 °F in July, although a record low of −26 °F was recorded in February 1996 and a record high of 105 °F was recorded in August 1983. Average monthly precipitation ranged from 1.31 inches in January to 4.48 inches in July. As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 7,331 people, 3,149 households, 2,127 families residing in the county.
The population density was 19.3 inhabitants per square mile. There were 3,827 housing units at an average density of 10.1 per square mile. The racial makeup of the county was 98.2% white, 0.2% Asian, 0.2% American Indian, 0.2% black or African American, 0.1% Pacific islander, 0.2% from other races, 1.0% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.1% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 24.4% were German, 14.5% were Irish, 11.9% were English, 5.9% were Swedish, 5.0% were American. Of the 3,149 households, 26.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.9% were married couples living together, 8.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 32.5% were non-families, 27.3% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.78. The median age was 47.2 years. The median income for a household in the county was $43,450 and the median income for a family was $55,154. Males had a median income of $41,052 versus $27,426 for females.
The per capita income for the county was $22,492. About 7.8% of families and 11.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 13.3% of those under age 18 and 8.3% of those age 65 or over. As part of Yankee-settled Northern Illinois, Henderson County was solidly Whig in its first three elections and equally Republican from that party’s formation until the Great Depression. Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 was the first Democrat to win it, but the county returned to Republican Alf Landon in 1936 and was not won by a Democrat until the GOP nominated the southern-oriented conservative Barry Goldwater in 1964. After that, like many Yankee counties, it returned to its Republican roots between 1968 and 1984, but with the shift of the GOP to a Southern Evangelical perspective Henderson County turned reliably Democratic in presidential elections from 1988 to 2012. Economic concerns in the “Rust Belt” led populist Republican Donald Trump to carry the county with over 61 percent of the vote in 2016.
Henderson County is located in Illinois's 17th Congressional District and is represented by Democrat Cheri Bustos. For the Illinois House of Representatives, the county is located in the 94th district and is represented by Republican Randy Frese; the county is located in the 47th district of the Illinois Senate, is represented by Republican Jil Tracy. Dallas City Henderson County is divided into eleven townships: Big River State Forest - 2,900 acre preserve adjacent to the Mississippi River Delabar State Park - 89 acre preserve adjacent to the Mississippi River Oquawka State Wildlife Refuge National Register of Historic Places listings in Henderson County, Illinois History of Mercer and Henderson Counties, Together with Biographical Matter, Etc. Chicago: H. H. Hill and Company, 1882. Henderson County Public Library District Henderson County Economic Development Corporation Henderson County Genealogy Henderson County Tombstone Project
Albany, New York
Albany is the capital of the U. S. state of New York and the seat of Albany County. Albany is located on the west bank of the Hudson River 10 miles south of its confluence with the Mohawk River and 135 miles north of New York City. Albany is known for its rich history, culture and institutions of higher education. Albany constitutes the economic and cultural core of the Capital District of New York State, which comprises the Albany–Schenectady–Troy, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area, including the nearby cities and suburbs of Troy and Saratoga Springs. With a 2013 Census-estimated population of 1.1 million the Capital District is the third-most populous metropolitan region in the state. As of the 2010 census, the population of Albany was 97,856; the area that became Albany was settled by Dutch colonists who in 1614, built Fort Nassau for fur trading and, in 1624, built Fort Orange. In 1664, the English took over the Dutch settlements, renaming the city as Albany, in honor of the Duke of Albany, the future James II of England and James VII of Scotland.
The city was chartered in 1686 under English rule. It became the capital of New York in 1797 following formation of the United States. Albany is one of the oldest surviving settlements of the original British thirteen colonies, is the longest continuously chartered city in the United States. During the late 18th century and throughout most of the 19th, Albany was a center of trade and transportation; the city lies toward the north end of the navigable Hudson River, was the original eastern terminus of the Erie Canal connecting to the Great Lakes, was home to some of the earliest railroad systems in the world. In the 1920s, a powerful political machine controlled by the Democratic Party arose in Albany. In the latter part of the 20th century, Albany experienced a decline in its population due to urban sprawl and suburbanization. In the early 21st century, Albany has experienced growth in the high-technology industry, with great strides in the nanotechnology sector. Albany is one of the oldest surviving European settlements from the original thirteen colonies and the longest continuously chartered city in the United States.
The Hudson River area was inhabited by Algonquian-speaking Mohican, who called it Pempotowwuthut-Muhhcanneuw, meaning "the fireplace of the Mohican nation." Based to the west along the Mohawk River, the Iroquoian-speaking Mohawk referred to it as Sche-negh-ta-da, or "through the pine woods," referring to the path they took there. The Mohawk were one of the Five Nations of the Iroquois Confederacy, or Haudenosaunee, became strong trading partners with the Dutch and English, it is the Albany area was visited by European fur traders as early as 1540, but the extent and duration of those visits has not been determined. Permanent European claims began when Englishman Henry Hudson, exploring for the Dutch East India Company on the Half Moon, reached the area in 1609, claiming it for the United Netherlands. In 1614, Hendrick Christiaensen built Fort Nassau, a fur-trading post and the first documented European structure in present-day Albany. Commencement of the fur trade provoked hostility from the French colony in Canada and among the natives, all of whom vied to control the trade.
In 1618, a flood ruined the fort on Castle Island. Both forts were named in honor of the Dutch royal House of Orange-Nassau. Fort Orange and the surrounding area were incorporated as the village of Beverwijck in 1652. In these early decades of trade, the Dutch and Mohawk developed relations that reflected differences among their three cultures; when New Netherland was captured by the English in 1664, the name was changed from Beverwijck to Albany in honor of the Duke of Albany. Duke of Albany was a Scottish title given since 1398 to a younger son of the King of Scots; the name is derived from Alba, the Gaelic name for Scotland. The Dutch regained Albany in August 1673 and renamed the city Willemstadt. On November 1, 1683, the Province of New York was split into counties, with Albany County being the largest. At that time the county included all of present New York State north of Dutchess and Ulster Counties in addition to present-day Bennington County, theoretically stretching west to the Pacific Ocean.
Albany was formally chartered as a municipality by provincial Governor Thomas Dongan on July 22, 1686. The Dongan Charter was identical in content to the charter awarded to the city of New York three months earlier. Dongan created Albany as a strip of land 16 miles long. Over the years Albany would lose much of the land to the annex land to the north and south. At this point, Albany had a population of about 500 people. In 1754, representatives of seven British North American colonies met in the Stadt Huys, Albany's city hall, for the Albany Congress. Although it was never adopted by Parliament, it was an important precursor to the United States Constitution; the same year, the fourth in a series of wars dating back to 1689, began.
Stake (Latter Day Saints)
A stake is an administrative unit composed of multiple congregations in certain denominations of the Latter Day Saint movement. The name "stake" derives from the Book of Isaiah: "enlarge the place of thy tent. A stake is sometimes referred to as a stake of Zion; the first Latter Day Saint stake was organized at church headquarters in Kirtland, Ohio on February 17, 1834, with Joseph Smith as its president. The second stake was organized in Clay County, Missouri that year on July 3, with David Whitmer as president; the Missouri stake was relocated to Far West, Missouri, in 1836, the Kirtland Stake dissolved in 1838. A stake was organized at Adam-ondi-Ahman in 1838 and abandoned that year due to the events of the Mormon War. In 1839, the church's central stake was established at Nauvoo, with William Marks as its president. Additional stakes were established in the area around Nauvoo in 1840. After the death of Joseph Smith in 1844, there was a schism in the Latter Day Saint movement. In 1846, all of the existing stakes, including the Nauvoo Stake, were discontinued as a result of the exodus of the majority of the Latter Day Saints to the Salt Lake Valley.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the largest denomination in the Latter Day Saint movement. After the death of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young assumed the leadership of the church and led its members to the Salt Lake Valley; the first stake established there was the Salt Lake Stake, established October 3, 1847, with John Smith as president. At the time of Young's death in 1877, there were 20 stakes in operation with a total of 250 wards. New stakes are created when the congregations in existing stakes or districts have grown sufficiently to support a stake. Districts may be elevated to stakes and are no longer presided over by a mission president. New stakes are frequently formed by dividing an existing stake. In addition to the size and number of local congregations, the creation of a new stake requires sufficient Melchizedek priesthood holders to fill the required leadership positions. At times the absence of available leadership constrains the creation of new stakes and the number of congregations within a stake can be much larger than normal.
The geographical area encompassed by a stake varies between countries and regions based on membership density. In Utah, a stake might encompass a few square miles in area. In contrast, a stake in another part of the world might require thousands of square miles to comprise a sufficient number of members. In December 2012, Jeffrey R. Holland organized the 3,000 th stake in Sierra Leone. At the end of 2015, there were 3,174 stakes in the LDS Church; as of December 2017, the LDS Church reported 3,341 stakes. The stake is an intermediate level in the organizational hierarchy of the LDS Church; the lowest level, consisting of a single congregation, is known as a branch. Stakes are organized from a group of contiguous branches. To be created, a stake must be composed of at least five wards. A stake may have up to a total of 16 congregations. Most stakes are composed of five to ten wards. In the United States and Canada, a minimum of 3,000 members is required to create a stake. For a stake to be created, there must be at least 99 active, full-tithe-paying Melchizedek priesthood holders living in the stake boundaries.
Stakes may be compared to dioceses in other Christian denominations. However, most Catholic dioceses are larger than LDS stakes. In terms of size, although less familiar, a comparable unit in hierarchical churches such as the Catholic Church might be a deanery, which comprises ten to twenty parishes. LDS Church stakes have fewer than 5,000 members, while Catholic dioceses average 250,000, but at times have over one million members; the presiding officer in a stake is known as the stake president. The president is assisted by two counselors and the three together form a stake presidency; the stake presidency is assisted in turn by a twelve-member body, called the stake high council. The members of the stake presidency and stake high council hold the priesthood office of high priest; the stake presidency and the high council handle the administrative and judicial business of the stake. The three members of the stake presidency are given the honorific title "President". In an area where there are insufficient congregations to form a stake, a district is formed to oversee the congregations.
The presiding officer in a district is called the district president. The district president may or may not have counselors, depending on the number of members in the district. A district council of up to twelve individuals may be formed. Duties which would be carried out by a stake presidency within a stake are shared between the district presidency and the mission presidency in a district. In addition to the presidency and high council, stake auxiliary leaders are called to oversee the operation of the various auxiliary organizations of the stake; the stake auxiliaries correspond to the ward-level auxiliaries, include the Stake Relief Society, the Stake Primary, the Stake Young Men and Young Women, the Stake Sunday School organizations. The stake-level auxiliary leadership consists of a presidency, a secretary, additional assistants or board members with specific responsibilities within the organization; the stake auxiliary leaders provide oversigh