Kalawao County is a county in the U.S. state of Hawaii. It is the smallest county in the 50 states both by population and land area. The county encompasses the Kalaupapa or Makanalua Peninsula, on the north coast of the island of Molokaʻi. The small peninsula is isolated from the rest of Molokaʻi by cliffs over a quarter-mile high—the only land access is a mule trail.
Kalawao County is included in the Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina, HI Metropolitan Statistical Area.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 53 square miles (140 km), of which 12 square miles (31 km) is land and 41 square miles (110 km) (77.3%) is water. By land area, it is the smallest true county in the United States; Falls Church, Virginia is smaller, but is an independent city with county-level governance and is not a county or part of one.
As of the census of 2000, 147 people, 115 households, and 21 families resided in the county, declining to 90 inhabitants in 2010. The population density was 11 people per square mile (4/km). The 172 housing units produced an average density of 13 per square mile (5/km). The racial makeup of the county was 25.85% White, 17.01% Asian, 48.30% Pacific Islander, 2.72% from other races, and 6.12% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race made up 4.08%.
1.70% of households housed children under the age of 18. 16.50% were married couples living together. 2.60% had a female householder with no husband present. 80.90% were non-families. 79.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 31.30% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.28 and the average family size was 2.27.
2.00% under the age of 18, 1.40% from 18 to 24, 18.40% from 25 to 44, 46.30% from 45 to 64, and 32.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 59 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.60 males. The population has declined since 1900:
Current residents include 16 former patients, 40 federal employees who work on preservation projects, and some state-employed health workers.