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The Commonwealth of Virginia is divided into 95 counties and 39 independent cities, which are considered county-equivalents for census purposes.
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Chesterfield County, Virginia

Chesterfield County Education, Geography, and History

County Seat: Chesterfield
Year Organized: 1749
Square Miles: 426
Court House:

P.O. Box 40
County Courthouse
Chesterfield, VA 23832-0040

Etymology - Origin of County Name

Chesterfield is named for Philip Dormer Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield.


County QuickFacts: Census Bureau Quick Facts

County History

Chesterfield County formed from Henrico County. Other changes seem to have occurred from 1849-1850. [Virginia Counties: Those Resulting from Virginia Legislation, by Morgan Poitiaux Robinson, originally published as Bulletin of the Virginia State Library, Volume 9, January, April, July 1916, reprinted 1992 by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, MD.]

Chesterfield County was named for Philip Dormer Stanhope, forth earl of Chesterfield, British statesman and diplomat, and was formed from Henrico County in 1749. Its area is 446 square miles, and the county seat is Chesterfield.

Neighboring Counties:

  • Henrico County, Virginia - northeast
  • Richmond, Virginia - northeast
  • Charles City County, Virginia - east
  • Hopewell, Virginia - southeast
  • Prince George County, Virginia - southeast
  • Colonial Heights, Virginia - southeast
  • Petersburg, Virginia - southeast
  • Dinwiddie County, Virginia - south
  • Amelia County, Virginia - southwest
  • Powhatan County, Virginia - northwest

Chesterfield County is largely bordered by two rivers which define miles of its boundaries. The major adjoining cities each originated at the head of navigation of these river, called the fall line. There, the sandy and mostly flat eastern coastal plain region of Virginia turns into the hillier and rockier Piedmont region to the west. Portions of Chesterfield County extend across both regions.

At fall line of the James River, Richmond and Manchester were formed. Most of the northern portion of Chesterfield County accounts for what is referred to as Metropolitan Richmond's "South Side". However, due to the geography in which the James River approaches Richmond from almost due west, and turns almost due south below the fall line for about 8 miles (13 km) before turning east again, the land within Henrico County encompasses much of Metropolitan Richmond's West End, its North Side, and East End areas.

Chesterfield County also borders on the Appomattox River to its south. Much of the southern and eastern portions of the county are considered part of the Tri-Cities area, which centers on the lower Appomattox River, where the neighboring independent city of Petersburg was founded on the fall line.


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