From Ohio History Central
On February 13, 1808, the Ohio government authorized the creation of Stark County. Residents named the county in honor of General John Stark, a hero of the American Revolution.
Stark County is located in northeastern Ohio. The county seat is Canton, which is the county’s largest population center, with 80,806 residents in 2000. The county experienced a 2.9 percent increase in population between 1990 and 2000, raising the number of residents to 378,098 people. An average of 656 people live in each of Stark County’s 576 square miles.
Stark County remains heavily rural, with urban areas comprising just five percent of the county’s land mass. With 1,300 farms existing in the county, many residents find employment in agriculture, but manufacturing establishments, sales positions, and service industries are the county’s largest employers. Stark County also has an active tourist industry, including the President William McKinley National Memorial, the First Ladies Museum, and the Pro Football Hall of Fame, among numerous other sites. The county’s average income was 25,214 dollars per person in 1999, with 10.5 percent of the population living in poverty.
Most voters in Stark County claim to be independents, yet in recent years, they have supported Republican Party candidates by slim margins at the national level.
The county also boasts numerous famous residents, including President of the United States William McKinley, First Lady Ida Saxton McKinley, and early industrialist Bezaleel Wells.