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Vermont Counties
There are fourteen counties in Vermont. Each county has a county seat, known in Vermont as shire town. In 1777, Vermont had two counties. The western side of the state was called Bennington County and the eastern was called Cumberland County. In 1781 Cumberland County was broken up into three counties in Vermont, plus Washington County, which eventually became part of New Hampshire. Today's Washington County was known as Jefferson County until 1814. Essex County, Orleans County, and Caledonia County are commonly referred to as the Northeast Kingdom.

Orange County, Vermont

Orange County History, Geography, and Demographics

County Seat: Chelsea
Year Organized: 1781
Square Miles: 689
Court House:

5 Court Street
County Courthouse
Chelsea, VT 05038-9703

Etymology - Origin of County Name

For William of Orange, later William III of England.


County QuickFacts:

County History

Jacob Bayley, a Revolutionary War general, helped settle the region, notably by founding Newbury in 1763 and by building the Bayley-Hazen Military Road in 1776–79. The county was formed in 1781 and named for William of Orange (William III of England). Randolph developed with the coming of the railroad in 1848. Tunbridge is the site of the century-old annual Tunbridge World’s Fair.

Chelsea, chief town. This county is bounded N. by Washington and Caledonia counties, E. by Connecticut river, S. by Windsor county, and W. by Addison and Washington counties. Area, 650 square miles. Population, 1820, 24,169; 1830, 27,285. Population to a square mile, 42. Incorporated, 1781. The eastern range of the Green mountains extends along the northwestern part of the county. The principal rivers, besides the Connecticut, are the Ompomponoosuc, Wait's, branches of the White, and Stevens' branch of the Onion. The lands in Orange county are generally good for grazing, and supply many cattle and all the varieties of the dairy, of which a large amount is annually sent to market. In 1837 there were 99,346 sheep within its limits. This county contains some excellent tracts of land on the banks of the Connecticut. Iron and lead ores, slate and granite, are abundant.

From Hayward's New England Gazetteer of 1839


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 692 square miles (1,792 kmē), of which, 689 square miles (1,783 kmē) of it is land and 3 square miles (8 kmē) of it (0.46%) is water.

Neighboring Counties:

  • Caledonia County, Vermont - northeast
  • Grafton County, New Hampshire - east
  • Windsor County, Vermont - southwest
  • Addison County, Vermont - west
  • Washington County, Vermont - northwest

Cities and Towns:

- Bradford town
- Braintree town
- Brookfield town
- Chelsea (County Seat) town
- Corinth town
- Fairlee town
- Newbury village Incorporated Area
- Randolph town
- Strafford town
- Thetford town
- Topsham town
- Tunbridge town
- Vershire town
- Washington town
- Wells River village Incorporated Area
- West Fairlee town
- Williamstown town

County Resources:

Enter County Resources and Information Here

County Resources
Counties: US Map
The history of our nation was a prolonged struggle to define the relative roles and powers of our governments: federal, state, and local. And the names given the counties, our most locally based jurisdictions, reflects the "characteristic features of this country!"