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Q: Need database/list of US town, counties and States ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Subject: Need database/list of US town, counties and States
Category: Reference, Education and News > General Reference
Asked by: nigelp-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 10 Jun 2004 05:26 PDT
Expires: 10 Jul 2004 05:26 PDT
Question ID: 359101
I'm looking for somewhere to download a full list of US cities/towns,
complete with County and State.

For instance, this sort of format/information:

Nevada Las Vegas Clark
New Mexico Albuquerque Bernalillo

The need is to import three fields (State, City, County) into a database.

Ideally, I'm looking for a free source but paying isn't out of the question.


Request for Question Clarification by pafalafa-ga on 10 Jun 2004 07:08 PDT

The databases you are asking about do exist, and they can be
downloaded free of charge.  But (there's always a but...!) they are
large datasets and will require some clean-up and manipulation.

The most comprehensive database of city names is 25 Mb (5 Mb zipped),
and contains thousands upon thousands of records that look like this:

PA  Wallaceton	ppl  Clearfield	405735N	0781721W  Wallaceton 1721  295	

What this shows is the city of WALLACETON in the county of CLEARFIELD
in the state of PA.  The rest is information and markers that you
didn't ask for -- such as latitude/longitude.  That's where the
"cleanup" comes in.

A smaller (about 5MB) file may be easier to work with but (1) on the
one hand, it's not quite as comprehensive a city listing as the above
database (but it's still awfully good), and (2) on the other hand, it
includes other types of information, like park names, rivers, etc,
that you would have to, again, clean up (easily done, as the cities
are all coded as such, so you can do a spreadsheet sort to isolate
them).  Records look like this:

Abbeville          ppl  Vermilion  Louisiana    295828N0920803W     18
Abbey Point        cape  Harford    Maryland     392058N0761341W       
Abbot Cemetery     cemetery  Grafton    New Hampshire    440455N0720106W   

The "ppl" indicates a populated place -- the cities you are looking
for.  I suppose a cemetery can be considered a "populated place" as
well, but I suspect you'll want to remove these from your records.


Anyway, I can lead you to one or both datasets as an answer to your
question, if they would be of interest to you, but I just wanted you
to be aware in advance that some work would be needed at your end to
manipulate the data to best meet your needs.

Let me know what you think.


Clarification of Question by nigelp-ga on 10 Jun 2004 10:35 PDT

Either of these solutions look fine. I would be happy to accept
details of both and am sure that we can clean up the data to suit our

Many thanks.
Subject: Re: Need database/list of US town, counties and States
Answered By: pafalafa-ga on 10 Jun 2004 11:06 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hello nigelp-ga,

Thanks for getting back to me on this.

In order to access the place name files that I mentioned, please do the following:

--Head to the US Geological Survery's Gazetteer site at:

--Towards the bottom of the page is a section labelled "Topical Gazetteers"

--There are two files in this section that are the ones I described to you earlier:

(1)  "Pop_places 23-Apr-2003 26 MB" is the comprehensive listing of
cities and towns, with their associated counties (along with lat/long,
etc).  You can also access this as a zip file:
" compressed file: 4 MB"

(2) "us_concise 23-Apr-2003 5 MB" is the other list I mentioned --
fewer populated place names, but still quite comprehensive.  It too,
is available as a zip file: " compressed file: 1 MB"

Either or both of these should serve you well.  If you have any
problems accessing the files, let me know, and I'll be glad to provide
additional assistance.



search strategy:  Used bookmarked gazetteer sites.
nigelp-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Excellent - just what we wanted. First rate response time, with 100%
accurate result. Would highly recommend this researcher. Thank you.

Subject: Re: Need database/list of US town, counties and States
From: blufford-ga on 10 Jun 2004 08:21 PDT
When I post my sales on Ebay, I like to use NAcO list of
counties.(National Association of Counties. Not only do they list the
counties for each state but all the communities in each county.
Subject: Re: Need database/list of US town, counties and States
From: pafalafa-ga on 11 Jun 2004 10:31 PDT
Thanks for the kind feedback.  Hope we'll see you back here one of these days.


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