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Welcome To KEY TO THE CITY's Page For
Cowlitz County, Washington


"The City of Friendly People"

Page Contents for Kelso, Washington

Statistics & Facts


History & History-related items

City Attractions


Historical Events

Chamber of Commerce.




Statistics & Facts

The Washington state capital is Olympia.
The population of Kelso is approximately 11,820 (1990), 11925 (2010).
The approximate number of families is 4,872 (1990), 4720 (2010).
The amount of land area in Kelso is 19.998 sq. kilometers.
The amount of land area in Kelso is 8.1 sq. miles.
The amount of surface water is 0.778 sq kilometers.
The distance from Kelso to Washington DC is 2475 miles.
The distance to the Washington state capital is 63 miles. (as the crow flies)
Kelso is positioned 46.12 degrees north of the equator and 122.89 degrees west of the prime meridian.
Kelso elevation is 12-120 feet above sea level with an average of 80 feet above sea level.
Kelso median income is $ 29,722 (2000).
The Kelso median home price is $ 96,000 (2000).
Kelso average annual rainfall is 44.68 inches per year
Kelso average annual precipitation is 48.1 inches peryear.
Kelso average annual snowfall is 7.1 inches per year.
Kelso average temperature is (July mean daytime) 76 degrees F.
The average low temperature is (January) 34, (July) 52 degrees F.
The average high temperature is (January) 46, (July) 76 degrees F.
The average winter temperature is 39.9 degrees F.
The average spring temperature is 50.1 degrees F.
The average summer temperature is 64.5 degrees F.
The average fall temperature is 53.0 degrees F.


in southwestern Washington. The cities of Kelso and Longview are located on the Columbia River 145 miles south of Seattle, Washington and 50 miles north of Portland, Oregon on Interstate 5. Other nearby communities include West Side Highway, Longview Heights, West Longview, Castle Rock, Kalama and Vader, Washington and Rainier, Oregon.
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History & History Related Items

Peter Crawford, a surveyor and Scotsman, founded this town in the 1840's on the banks of the Cowlitz River. He named it Kelso after his home in Scotland.

Mount St. Helens Volcano violently erupted on May 18th, 1980 disrupting the entire area.
There are five visitor centers along the Spirit Lake Memorial Highway that leads into the blast zone, each with interesting displays explaining the events that occurred around the time of the eruption.
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See this page to learn more about the Highlander Festival and the Air Show
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Kelso City Government

The City of Kelso
P.O. Box A
Kelso, WA 98626
Phone: (360) 423-1371

Kelso has a council/manager form of government. There are seven council members who are elected at large. The council then selects a mayor and a mayor pro-tem from among its members.

Kelso is the county seat for Cowlitz County

Kelso Historical Events

1998, March
The Aldercrest Disaster
Starting in March 1998, an extensive landslide area in the Aldercrest/Banyan caused the evacuation of over 100 homes, which are lost to the residents. For details see the above website.

Kelso Chamber

River Cities Chamber of Commerce
Serving the Greater Kelso Longview area

Chamber Of Commerce
1563 Olympia Way
Kelso, WA 98632
Phone: 360-423-8400

Kelso Organizations

River Cities Chamber of Commerce
Serving the Greater Kelso Longview area

Chamber Of Commerce
1563 Olympia Way
Kelso, WA 98632
Phone: 360-423-8400

Kelso Libraries

Kelso Public Library
314 Academy St.
Kelso WA
Phone: (360) 423-8110

Kelso Schools

Kelso School District
601 Crawford Street
Kelso, Washington 98626
Phone: 360-577-2400
Email: Kelso


The population of Kelso was:
1970 - 10,296
1980 - 11,129
1986 - 10,760
1988 - 10,880
1990 - 11,820
2000 - 11,895
2002 - 11,787 (estimate)

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