HOUSTON COUNTY, Ga. — With the official 2020 Census results still pending, the latest estimate puts Houston County's population at 160,110 people. That's the highest it's ever been.
The numbers show that Houston County's population has increased by nearly 15% over the last 10 years.
The new faces include Sara Kooiman-Bode, her husband, and their five children. Her husband's construction job brought them to Bonaire.
“It's amazing. We've only been here for a year-and-a-half,” she said.
She says it's been easy to slide into the area.
“The school system is wonderful. Also, there are so many community items if you go down there Perry...their town is alive, they keep activities going every weekend. It's very family friendly,” said Kooiman-Bode.
County historian Ellie Loudermilk has a closer look at the timeline. The first recorded census was in 1830 with 7,369 people. Nearly a century later, in 1920, it was 21,964 people.
Over the years; Bibb, Crawford, Macon, Peach, Pulaski, and Upson counties were all created from portions of Houston County.
“By 1930, because Peach County had been taken away, that population shifted to 11,280, so we lost 10,00 people,” said Loudermilk.
She says one of the biggest booms came from Robins Air Force Base.
“The population in 1940 stated that we had 11,303 people that lived in Houston County. By 1950, because of the base, we recorded 20,964 people,” said Loudermilk.
Two of those people were David Granville and his wife Shirlyn Johnson-Granville. They were both born and raised in Warner Robins -- David worked on base.
“Watched it grow from two grocery stores to now we got one on every block, and watching the base grow,” said Granville.
“You started out with just maybe a few 100 families, and now we have thousands of families,” said Johnson-Granville.
Loudermilk estimates that 10 years from now, Houston County should expect another 10,000 people.
“It's a very accepting community, so it's really easy to move here,” said Kooiman-Bode.
“We love Houston County, it's our home,” said Johnson-Granville.
Back in 2018, Houston County was estimated to be bigger than Bibb County for the first time. Right now, Houston has about 7,000 more people than Bibb.