Dauphin County is a county in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 268,100. The county seat and the largest city is Harrisburg, Pennsylvania's state capital and tenth largest city. The county was created ("erected") on March 4, 1785, from part of Lancaster County and was named after Louis-Joseph, Dauphin of France, the first son of Louis XVI.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 558 square miles (1,450 km²), of which 525 square miles (1,360 km²) is land and 33 square miles (85 km²) (5.9%) is water. The county is bound to its western border by the Susquehanna River. It has a humid continental climate (Dfa except for some Dfb in highlands) and the hardiness zone ranges from 6a to 7a. The area code is 717 with an overlay of 223.
As of the 2010 census, the county was 72.7% White, 18.0% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American, 3.2% Asian, and 3.1% were two or more races. 7.0% of the population were of Hispanic or Latino ancestry .As of the census of 2000, there were 251,798 people, 102,670 households, and 66,119 families residing in the county. The population density was 479 people per square mile (185/km²). There were 111,133 housing units at an average density of 212 per square mile (82/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 77.11% White, 16.91% Black or African American, 0.16% Native American, 1.96% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 1.97% from other races, and 1.85% from two or more races. 4.13% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 29.2% were of German, 7.5% Irish, 7.3% American and 7.2% Italian ancestry according to Census 2000. 91.8% spoke English and 3.9% Spanish as their first language.
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