Weed is a city located in Siskiyou County, California. As of the 2000 Census, the town had a total population of 2,978. There are several unincorporated communities adjacent to, or just outside Weed proper. These include Edgewood, Carrick, Lake Shastina, Rancho Hills and Hammond Ranch. These communities generally have mailing addresses that use Weed, or its ZIP code. The total population of this area in 2007 was 6,318. Weed is about 10 miles (16 km) west-northwest of Mount Shasta, a prominent northern California landmark, and the second tallest volcano in the Cascade Range.
The town of Weed gets its name from the founder of the local lumber mill and pioneer Abner Weed, who discovered that the area's strong winds were helpful in drying lumber. In 1897, Abner Weed bought the Siskiyou Lumber and Mercantile Mill and 280 acres (110 ha) of land in what is now the City of Weed, for the sum of $400. By the 1940s Weed boasted the world's largest sawmill.
Weed is located at 41°25'27" North, 122°23'4" West (41.424298, -122.384417). It is located off Interstate 5, just 49 miles (79 km) south of the California–Oregon border. The next large town to the north on I-5 is Yreka; to the south is City of Mount Shasta. U.S. Route 97 heads off to the northeast and Klamath Falls, Oregon.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.8 square miles (12.6 km²), of which, 4.8 square miles (12.6 km²) of it is land and none of it is covered by water.
Weed is located at the confluence of Interstate 5 and U.S. Route 97. Interstate 5 is the primary north-south transportation corridor for the west coast of the United States running from the Mexican border to the Canadian border. U.S. Route 97 it is major north-south U.S. highway continuing from Weed in a northeasterly direction toward Klamath Falls, Oregon and then north through Oregon and Washington to the Canadian Border. California State Route 265 also runs through the town of Weed, locally known as North Weed Boulevard. Only 2 blocks long, it is one of the shortest state highways in California.
Weed is serviced by Siskiyou County's public transportation bus lines, commonly called "The STAGE" (Siskiyou Transit and General Express).
The closest airports for commercial air travel are Rogue Valley International-Medford Airport and Redding Municipal Airport. The Weed Airport serves general aviation. Typically corporate visitors or geological researchers uses this facility.
Amtrak trains pass through Weed, but do not stop there. The Amtrak bus/shuttle has one stop in North Weed. The nearest depot for Amtrak train travel is in Dunsmuir, approximately 15 miles (24 km) to the south.
From its founding in 1901, to as late as the 1980s, Weed was home to a thriving lumber industry. Roseburg Forest Products (Plywood Production), International Paper Company, Morgan Products Ltd. (Wooden Door Manufacturing), and J.H. Baxter (Wood Treatment) were all located in Weed. The historic industrial area at the north-east corner of town has been plagued with environmental concerns and clean-up efforts as a result of chemicals used for wood treatment, as well as chemical residue from glue used in the door factory.
Although historically reliant on logging, wood processing and forest related products, Weed's economy has become more reliant on tourism as a source of economic activity. Today, most of the wood-product related industry has been scaled back or ceased altogether, and new retail and light industrial activity is concentrated in the south-east corner of Weed. Retail at the south end of town, in the form of restaurants and hotels, caters primarily to tourist travel on the Interstate 5 corridor. Light manufacturing of bottled water from Crystal Geyser Company has also added economic stability to the area.
Weed is part of the Shasta Valley Enterprise Zone, which provides tax breaks, fee reductions, and permit fast-tracking for employers locating in the area.
As of 2007, the largest employers in Weed were:
Primary education in Weed is conducted at Weed Elementary School (K-5th Grade) and Weed Middle School (Grades 6-8) which comprise the Weed Union Elementary School District. Butteville Elementary (K-8) is another nearby option just outside the City of Weed.
Secondary level students are educated at Weed High School (Grades 9-12) part of the Siskiyou Union High School District. Weed High School is known for its picturesque campus and diverse student body. The College of the Siskiyous, located in Weed, provides a steady source of employment for faculty and staff, a source of visitors for the local economy, and offers a two-year junior college education with various Associate Degree and Vocational Certificate Programs.
Visitors use Weed as a base to engage in trout fishing in the nearby Klamath, Sacramento and McCloud Rivers, or come to see and climb Mount Shasta, Castle Crags or the Trinity Alps. Visitors also engage in nearby skiing (both alpine and cross-country) and biking, or hike to the waterfalls, streams and lakes in the area, including nearby Mossbrae Falls, Lake Siskiyou, Castle Lake and Shasta Lake.
Weed is centrally located to Castle Crags State Park, Lava Beds National Monument, and Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge. In addition to these state and federally designated parks, there are numerous local recreation opportunities.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,978 people, 1,184 households, and 747 families residing in the city. The population density was 613.4 people per square mile (237.1/km²). There were 1,293 housing units at an average density of 266.3/sq mi (102.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 73.27% White, 9.27% Black or African American, 1.95% Native American, 4.57% Asian, 0.47% Pacific Islander, 5.51% from other races, and 4.97% from two or more races. 12.76% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Crime: The number of violent crimes recorded by the FBI in 2003 was 25. The number of murders and homicides was 1. The violent crime rate was 8.5 per 1,000 people.
In the city the population is spread out with 25.6% under the age of 18, 14.4% from 18 to 24, 22.6% from 25 to 44, 20.2% from 45 to 64, and 17.2% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 35 years. For every 100 females there are 94.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 93.3 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $23,333, and the median income for a family is $32,197. Males have a median income of $29,052 versus $21,894 for females. The per capita income for the city is $12,434. 23.9% of the population and 17.2% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 30.9% of those under the age of 18 and 4.9% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.
Traffic: The average commute time for Weed workers is 12 minutes, compared with 26 minutes nationwide.
Housing: Median rent in Weed, at the time of the 2000 Census, was $348. Monthly homeowner costs, for people with mortgages, were $676.
Education: 7% of Weed residents age 25 and older have a bachelor's or advanced college degree.
Weed's historic lumber industry and manufacturing facilities made it a magnet for ethnic minority migration, that may not have otherwise been the case in this region of the country. A large number of Italian immigrants migrated to Weed, and other towns in southern Siskiyou County at the turn of the 20th century. While immigrants were a source of labor for the region, they were not always well treated, in fact in 1909 complaints from workers in the lumber industry reached the Italian consular.. However, in time the Italian population came to be a cornerstone of Weed civic life. Many streets in the early Italian neighborhood bear names of Italian cities, such as Rome, Genoa, Como, and Venice. Annually since 1954, the town has held the Weed Italian Carnevale in June or July, although recently dropping "Italian" from its name while maintaining the Italian spelling of carnival and the traditional bocce ball tournaments.
A large number of black-Americans migrated to Weed as well, to work in Long Bell Lumber Company's Weed facility after the company closed two mills in Louisiana in 1922. The company promised to advance travel expenses and provide housing for workers relocating to Weed..
Immigrants locating in Weed since the 1980s have come primarily from Mexico and Laos.
As a result of these migrations, Weed has a much more ethnically diverse population than Siskiyou County as a whole. Netting the Hispanic or Latino population out of Census figures for White Race, Weed's white population is 60.6% compared to Siskiyou County at 79.5% under the same method.
Major ancestry groups reported by Weed residents in 2000 Census include:
· Italian - 13% · Mexican - 11% · German - 11% · Black or African American - 9% · Irish - 9% · English - 8% · American Indian tribes, specified - 4% · Laotian - 4% · European - 3% · Portuguese - 2% · Scots-Irish - 2% · French (except Basque) - 2% · Polish - 2% · Norwegian - 2% · Dutch - 2% · Scottish - 1% · All other tribes - 1% · Cherokee - 1% · Other Hispanic or Latino - 1% · Swedish - 1% · Subsaharan African - 1% · Austrian - 1% · African - 1% · French Canadian - 1% · Welsh - 1% · Japanese - 1% · Choctaw - 1% · Filipino - 1% · Indonesian - 1%
In the state legislature Weed is located in the 4th Senate District, represented by Republican Sam Aanestad, and in the 2nd Assembly District, represented by Republican Doug LaMalfa. Federally, Weed is located in California's 2nd congressional district, which has a Cook PVI of R +13 and is represented by Republican Wally Herger.
The Republican representation has more to do with the demographics and political affliations of the districts in which Weed falls, as opposed to the political views of the community itself. At the local level, Siskiyou County Supervisoral District 3, in which Weed is the core community, voter registration is 39.6% Democrat, 39.1% Republican, 16.2% Decline to State, with remainder split amongst other political parties such as Green, and Libertarian as of 2006..