Bent County, Colorado

Bent County, Colorado


According to Countryaah, Bent County is located in southeastern Colorado, with a population of 6,499 according to the 2019 census. The county seat is Las Animas. Bent County has an area of 2,539 square miles and is bordered by Cheyenne and Kiowa Counties to the north, Prowers County to the east, Baca County to the south, and Las Animas County to the west.

The racial makeup of Bent County is mostly White (82.2%), followed by Hispanic or Latino (14.1%), Native American (1.3%), Asian (0.8%), and Black or African American (0.7%). Approximately 87% of residents speak English as their primary language while 11% speak Spanish as their first language. The median household income in 2019 was $52,082 which is lower than both state and national averages but has seen an increase from $45,000 in 2010.

The economy of Bent County is primarily agricultural with wheat being one of the main crops grown in this area; however, cattle ranching and dairy farming are also important components of the local economy. In addition to agriculture there are also some manufacturing jobs available within the county as well as some service-oriented jobs such as healthcare providers and retail stores.

Tourism also plays an important role for Bent County with numerous outdoor activities such as camping and fishing available throughout the area drawing visitors from all over Colorado to enjoy its rustic charm. Furthermore, there are many historical sites located around Bent County that attract visitors from across the state including Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site which was built in 1833 by traders William and Charles Bent along with Ceran St Vrain on behalf of the United States Government as a trading post for trappers and Native Americans during that time period.

Bent County offers its residents access to quality education through its public school system which includes four elementary schools, one middle school, one high school, one alternative education school and one charter school providing students with additional educational options outside of public schooling if desired. Furthermore, there are several private schools located throughout Bent County that offer higher quality education than those available from within public schools if desired.

Bent County, Colorado

History of Bent County, Colorado

Bent County, Colorado is located in the southeastern corner of the state. It was founded in 1870 and was named after William Bent, a mountain man and trader who lived in the area in the early 1800s. Bent County covers an area of 1,822 square miles and is home to a population of 6,147 people. The county seat is Las Animas which was established in 1866.

The first settlers to Bent County were farmers who settled along the Purgatoire River. The area quickly grew into a prosperous agricultural community with crops such as wheat, corn, beans, potatoes and alfalfa being grown for market. In addition to agriculture, coal mining became an important industry in the county during the late 1800s. By 1900 there were over 50 coal mines operating throughout Bent County. In addition to coal mining, ranchers also called Bent County home during this time period and raised cattle for market.

Throughout its history Bent County has been home to several notable figures including Civil War General William Jackson Palmer who founded the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad which ran through Las Animas from 1870-1931; writer Zane Grey who wrote some of his best-known novels while living near Las Animas; and former Governor Ralph Carr who served from 1939-1943 and is remembered for his defense of Japanese Americans during World War II.

Today, Bent County continues to be an agricultural center with wheat being its major crop although farming has become more diversified with alfalfa hay, corn grain sorghum and other crops now being grown for market as well as ranching operations still active in the area. In addition to agriculture tourism is becoming increasingly popular with tourists visiting sites such as John Martin Reservoir State Park located just south of Las Animas which offers camping fishing boating swimming and other recreational activities year-round.

Major cities and towns in Bent County, Colorado

Bent County, Colorado is comprised of several major cities and towns. The county seat is Las Animas which was established in 1866 and is located along the Purgatoire River. It is home to a population of 2,091 and serves as the commercial center for the county. Other cities and towns include Hasty, which has a population of 246; Kim, with a population of 161; Boone, with a population of 147; and McClave, with a population of 132.

Las Animas is home to several historical sites such as the Bent County Courthouse which was built in 1876 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The city also features an art gallery, museum and library. There are several restaurants, shops and services located throughout town as well as a variety of recreational activities such as golfing at Bent County Golf Course or fishing at John Martin Reservoir State Park just south of Las Animas.

Hasty lies about ten miles east of Las Animas and has been an agricultural center since its founding in 1908. It features several stores including a grocery store, hardware store, post office and gas station as well as churches for various denominations. Kim is located about fifteen miles southwest of Las Animas along U.S Highway 50 and features two churches – one Catholic church and one non-denominational church – along with several small businesses including grocery stores, gas stations and restaurants.

Boone lies about twenty miles west of Las Animas along U.S Highway 50-287 junction while McClave lies about thirty-five miles northeast along U.S Highway 50-160 junction. Both offer basic services such as grocery stores post offices gas stations restaurants churches etc but are mainly agricultural centers for the surrounding area with wheat being the main crop grown in both towns.

Population in Bent County, Colorado

According to, Bent County, Colorado has a population of 6,721 according to the 2010 census. The largest city in the county is Las Animas which has a population of 2,091. Hasty is the second largest city with a population of 246 while Kim follows with a population of 161. Other towns and cities include Boone (147), McClave (132), and Model (68).

The racial makeup of Bent County is primarily white (75.3%), followed by Hispanic or Latino (17.6%), American Indian and Alaska Native (4.2%), and African American (1%). The median age in Bent County is 38 years old, with 22% under the age of 18 and 15% over the age of 65. The median household income for Bent County is $37,912 per year with 11% living below the poverty line.

The county’s labor force consists mainly of agriculture, manufacturing, retail trade, health care & social assistance, construction, and educational services industries. Agriculture provides employment for 11% of Bent County’s labor force while manufacturing provides employment for 8%. Retail trade accounts for 7%, health care & social assistance accounts for 6%, construction accounts for 5%, and educational services account for 4%.

Bent County’s population has remained relatively stable since 2010 with only a 0.7 percent decrease in total population from 2010 to 2018 according to census data. This stability can be attributed to its diverse economy which provides job opportunities across multiple industries as well as its proximity to larger cities such as Pueblo and Colorado Springs which offer more job opportunities than smaller towns in the area.