Alabama Counties
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Alabama Counties

Alabama currently has sixty-seven counties. The oldest county, Washington, was created on June 4, 1800, when what is now Alabama was then part of the Mississippi Territory. The newest county is Houston, created on February 9, 1903.

Jefferson County, Alabama History

Jefferson County Education, Geography, and HistoryJefferson County, Alabama Courthouse

Jefferson County is located in the north-central portion of the State of Alabama. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 658,466, making it the most populous county in Alabama. The county was created on December 13,1819 and was formed from Blount County. Jefferson county was named in honor of Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), 3rd US President. The county seat is Birmingham, the most populous city in the state.

Jefferson County is included in the Birmingham-Hoover, AL Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Jefferson County Name

Jefferson county was named in honor of Thomas Jefferson.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Jefferson County History

Jefferson County, Alabama

Jefferson county was formed by the Alabama legislature on December 13, 1819. The county was named in honor of Thomas Jefferson, and is located in the north-central portion of the state, on the southern extension of the Appalachians, in the center of the iron, coal and limestone belt of the South. Jefferson County is bordered by Blount, Bibb, St. Clair, Shelby, Tuscaloosa, and Walker counties. It encompasses 1,119 square miles. The county seat was at Carrollsville from 1819-21, at Elyton from 1821-73, and since 1873 has been at Birmingham, which was named for England's iron and steel center in Warwickshire. Other towns and communities include Bessemer, Homewood, Hueytown, Mountain Brook, Hoover, Fultondale, Trussville, and Warrior.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,124 square miles (2,910 km2), of which 1,111 square miles (2,880 km2) is land and 13 square miles (34 km2) (1.1%) is water. It is the fifth-largest county in Alabama by land area. The county is home to the Watercress Darter National Wildlife Refuge.

Jefferson County is drained by both the Black Warrior and Cahaba rivers. Shades Creek, Little Shades Creek, and Patton Creek flow into the Cahaba River, whereas Valley Creek and Village Creek flow into the Black Warrior River.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Northeast: Blount County; St. Clair County
  • Southeast: Shelby County
  • Southwest: Bibb County; Tuscaloosa County
  • Northwest: Walker County


Except for cities such as Birmingham that have established their own local school districts, all parts of Jefferson County are served by Jefferson County Board of Education. Parts within Birmingham are served by Birmingham City Schools. Other cities in the county that have established their own school systems are Gardendale, Bessemer, Fairfield, Midfield, Trussville, Homewood, Leeds, Hoover, Vestavia Hills, Tarrant, and Mountain Brook.

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