List of U.S. county name etymologies (N–R)
|Nacogdoches County||Texas||Named for the Nacogdoche tribe of Caddo Native Americans.|
|Nance County||Nebraska||Named after Governor Albinus Nance.|
|Town and County of Nantucket||Massachusetts||Nantucket takes its name from a word in an Eastern Algonquian language of southern New England, originally spelled variously as natocke, nantaticut, nantican, and nautican. The meaning of the term is uncertain, although it may have meant "in the midst of waters," or "far away island."|
An Indian word, uncertain origin, many plausible possibilities.
|Nash County||North Carolina||Named for Brigadier General Francis Nash, who had been mortally wounded at the Battle of Germantown.|
|Nassau County||Florida||Named for the Duchy of Nassau in Germany.|
|Nassau County||New York||Named after an old name for Long Island, which was named Nassau after William of Nassau, Prince of Orange (who later became King William III of England.)|
|Natchitoches Parish||Louisiana||Named for the Natchitoches tribe of Native Americans.|
Named for the natron, or soda deposits in the county.
named for the Navajo Indian tribe
|Navarro County||Texas||Named for José Antonio Navarro, a Tejano leader in the Texas Revolution who signed the Texas Declaration of Independence.|
|Nelson County||Kentucky||Named for Thomas Nelson, Jr. a Virginia Governor who signed the Declaration of Independence.|
|Nelson County||North Dakota||
for Nelson E. Nelson, a ND legislator at the time.
|Nelson County||Virginia||Named for Thomas Nelson, Jr. a Virginia Governor who signed the Declaration of Independence.|
from the Otoe Indian word nimaha 'murky water.'
from the Otoe Indian word 'murky water.'
Osage Indian 'cold, clear water' or 'main river,'
|Neshoba County||Mississippi||Neshoba, derived from the Choctaw word nashoba, means Wolf. |
|Ness County||Kansas||Named for Corporal Noah V. Ness of the Seventh Kansas Cavalry. Ness died of wounds suffered at the Battle of Abbeyville in Mississippi in August 1864.|
|Nevada County||Arkansas||Named for the State of Nevada.|
|Nevada County||California||named after the mining town of Nevada City, a name derived from the term "Sierra Nevada." The word nevada in Spanish means "snowy" or "snowcovered."|
|New Castle County||Delaware|
|New Hanover County||North Carolina||Named for the House of Hanover.|
|New Haven County||Connecticut||Named after its largest city and county seat, New Haven.|
|New Kent County||Virginia||Named for the county of Kent, England.|
|New London County||Connecticut||Named after the county seat, New London, which is named for London, England.|
|New Madrid County||Missouri||Named after a district located in the region that was once under Spanish rule, Nuevo Madrid, after the city of Madrid, Spain.|
|New York County||New York||New York is named after James, Duke of York, who renamed New Amsterdam after himself shortly after the British takeover in 1664. The county name also refers to the fact that New York City was wholly contained in the county until it combined with other areas in the 1880s. New York County today is thus simply referred to as Manhattan, the island that forms almost all the area of the county.|
|Newaygo County||Michigan||Derived from then name of a Chippewa chief who signed the Treaty of Saginaw or from a Native American word meaning "much water."|
|Newberry County||South Carolina||Unknown|
|Newport County||Rhode Island||Descriptive, recalling Newport, Monmouthshire, Wales|
|City of Newport News||Virginia||Not known with any certainty. See the "Name" section of the city's article for possibilities.|
|Newton County||Arkansas||Named for Thomas W. Newton, an Arkansas Congressman.|
|Newton County||Georgia||Named after Sgt. John Newton of the American Revolutionary War.|
|Newton County||Mississippi||Named for Sir Isaac Newton.|
|Newton County||Missouri||Named after Sgt. John Newton of the American Revolutionary War.|
|Nez Perce County||Idaho||Named for the Nez Percé tribe of Native Americans.|
|Niagara County||New York||Derived from the Indian word Onguiaahra meaning the straight or thunder of waters.|
|Nicholas County||Kentucky||Named for George Nicholas, the "Father of the Kentucky Constitution".|
|Nicholas County||West Virginia||Named for Virginia Governor Wilson Cary Nicholas.|
|Nicollet County||Minnesota||Named for Joseph Nicolas Nicollet, a geographer-explorer.|
Omaha–Ponca languageIndian 'spreading water river.'
|Noble County||Indiana||Named for James Noble, the first U.S. Senator from Indiana.|
|Noble County||Ohio||Named for Rep. Warren P. Noble of the Ohio House of Representatives, who was an early settler there.|
for John W. Noble, Secretary of the Interior
|Nobles County||Minnesota||Named for William H. Nobles, a member of the Territorial Legislature.|
|Nodaway County||Missouri||Named for the Nodaway River.|
|Nolan County||Texas||Named for Philip Nolan, one of the first American traders to visit Texas.|
|Nome Census Area||Alaska|
|City of Norfolk||Virginia||Named for the county of Norfolk, England.|
|Norman County||Minnesota||In honor of the large number of Norwegians, or Normans, who settled in this county.|
|North Slope Borough||Alaska||Named for the Alaska North Slope, a region on the northern slope of the Brooks Range.|
|Northampton County||North Carolina||Named for James Compton, 5th Earl of Northampton.|
|Northampton County||Pennsylvania||For Northamptonshire, England,|
|Northampton County||Virginia||for Spencer Compton, 2nd Earl of Northampton|
|Northumberland County||Pennsylvania||Named for the county of Northumberland, England.|
|Northwest Arctic Borough||Alaska|
|City of Norton||Virginia||Named in 1890 after Eckstein Norton, then president of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad.|
|Norton County||Kansas||Named for Orloff Norton.|
|Nottoway County||Virginia||From the Nottoway Tribe of Native Americans.|
|Nowata County||Oklahoma||From the Lenape word "nuwita," meaning "friendly" or "welcome."|
|Noxubee County||Mississippi||Derived from the Choctaw word nakshobi, meaning to stink.|
|Nuckolls County||Nebraska||Named after Stephen F. Nuckolls, an early pioneer in this area.|
|Nueces County||Texas||Named for the Nueces River, whose name comes from the Spanish word for walnuts or pecans.|
|Nye County||Nevada||Named in honor of James W. Nye, first governor of the Nevada Territory and later U.S. Senator from the state.|
- O'Brien County, Iowa: For William Smith O'Brien, leader of the Irish rebellion
- Oakland County, Michigan: Named for the numerous oak openings in the county.
- Obion County, Tennessee: from an Indian word meaning 'many forks or branches'
- Ocean County, New Jersey: Location on the Atlantic Ocean 
- Oceana County, Michigan: Named "Oceana" because it borders Lake Michigan, the freshwater "ocean."
- Ochiltree County, Texas: For Col. William Beck Ochiltree, Republic of Texas secretary of the treasury
- Oconee County, Georgia: Cherokee word meaning "springs"
- Oconee County, South Carolina: Cherokee word meaning"springs"
- Oconto County, Wisconsin: from a Menominee word possibly 'place of the Northern pike' or 'red river.'
- Ogemaw County, Michigan: Named after Ogemaw-ki-keto, a prominent Saginaw Valley Indian chief who signed the Treaty of Saginaw. "Ogima" in Ottawa or Ojibwa means "chief" or "boss."
- Ogle County, Illinois: For Lt. Joseph Ogle, first Methodist layman in Illinois and captain of the territorial militia.
- Oglethorpe County, Georgia: For Gen. James Edward Oglethorpe, founder of Georgia and first governor
- Ohio County, Indiana — All three Ohio Counties in the United States are named for the Ohio River. The Indiana and West Virginia counties border on the river, and the Kentucky county did as well until other counties were carved from it.
- Ohio County, Kentucky
- Ohio County, West Virginia
- Okaloosa County, Florida
- Okanogan County, Washington
- Okeechobee County, Florida: Okeechobee was named for the Lake Okeechobee, which was itself named for Hitchiti words oka (water) and chobi (big).
- Okfuskee County, Oklahoma
- Oklahoma County, Oklahoma
- Okmulgee County, Oklahoma
- Oktibbeha County, Mississippi
- Oldham County, Kentucky
- Oldham County, Texas
- Oliver County, North Dakota
- Olmsted County, Minnesota
- Oneida County, Idaho
- Oneida County, New York: Named for the Oneida people (Iroquois tribe)
- Oneida County, Wisconsin
- Onondaga County, New York: Named for the Onondaga people (Iroquois tribe)
- Onslow County, North Carolina
- Ontario County, New York
- Ontonagon County, Michigan: Named for the river, called "Nantounagon" on a 1670 French map. The Ojibwa word "onagon" means "dish" or "bowl."
- Orange County, California: Orange is named for its main product at the time of its naming, oranges.
- Orange County, Florida: Orange is named for its main product at the time of its naming, oranges.
- Orange County, Indiana: Orange is named for Orange County, North Carolina.
- Orange County, New York
- Orange County, North Carolina
- Orange County, Texas
- Orange County, Vermont
- Orange County, Virginia
- Orangeburg County, South Carolina
- Oregon County, Missouri
- Orleans County, New York
- Orleans County, Vermont
- Orleans Parish, Louisiana
- Osage County, Kansas: Osage is named for the Osage River that runs through it.
- Osage County, Missouri
- Osage County, Oklahoma
- Osborne County, Kansas
- Osceola County, Florida
- Osceola County, Iowa
- Osceola County, Michigan: Named for the Seminole Indian chief Osceola.
- Oscoda County, Michigan: Believed to be a combination of two Ojibwa words, "ossin" (stone) and "muskoda" (prairie).
- Oswego County, New York
- Otero County, Colorado: Otero County is named for Miguel Antonio Otero, a prominent politician from the New Mexico Territory.
- Otero County, New Mexico: Otero County is named for Miguel Antonio Otero, a prominent politician from the New Mexico Territory.
- Otoe County, Nebraska
- Otsego County, Michigan: Derived from the Mohawk Iroquoian word that meant either "clear water" or "meeting place."
- Otsego County, New York
- Ottawa County, Kansas
- Ottawa County, Michigan: Named for the Ottawa tribe called "Ondatahouats," or "people of the forest."
- Ottawa County, Ohio
- Ottawa County, Oklahoma
- Otter Tail County, Minnesota
- Ouachita County, Arkansas
- Ouachita Parish, Louisiana
- Ouray County, Colorado: Ouray County is named for Chief Ouray, leader of the Uncompahgre Ute tribe and a noted statesman.
- Outagamie County, Wisconsin
- Overton County, Tennessee
- Owen County, Indiana: Owen is named for Abraham Owen, a colonel who died at the Battle of Tippecanoe.
- Owen County, Kentucky
- Owsley County, Kentucky
- Owyhee County, Idaho: Hawaiian fur trappers explored the area in 1819 and 1820.
- Oxford County, Maine
- Ozark County, Missouri
- Ozaukee County, Wisconsin
- Pacific County, Washington
- Page County, Iowa
- Page County, Virginia - John Page, a governor of Virginia
- Palm Beach County, Florida
- Palo Alto County, Iowa
- Palo Pinto County, Texas
- Pamlico County, North Carolina
- Panola County, Mississippi
- Panola County, Texas
- Park County, Colorado: Park County is named for South Park (Park County, Colorado), a large and fertile mountain valley.
- Park County, Montana
- Park County, Wyoming
- Parke County, Indiana: Parke is named for Benjamin Parke, a delegate of Indiana Territory to the U.S. Congress.
- Parker County, Texas
- Parmer County, Texas
- Pasco County, Florida
- Pasquotank County, North Carolina
- Passaic County, New Jersey from the Lenape word "Pahsayek" for valley 
- Patrick County, Virginia
- Paulding County, Georgia
- Paulding County, Ohio
- Pawnee County, Kansas: Pawnee County is named for the Pawnee Indian tribe who readily utilized the land as prime hunting grounds.
- Pawnee County, Nebraska
- Pawnee County, Oklahoma
- Payette County, Idaho
- Payne County, Oklahoma
- Peach County, Georgia is named for the fruit commonly associated with Georgia.
- Pearl River County, Mississippi
- Pecos County, Texas
- Pembina County, North Dakota
- Pemiscot County, Missouri
- Pend Oreille County, Washington
- Pender County, North Carolina
- Pendleton County, Kentucky
- Pendleton County, West Virginia
- Pennington County, Minnesota
- Pennington County, South Dakota
- Penobscot County, Maine
- Peoria County, Illinois
- Pepin County, Wisconsin
- Perkins County, Nebraska
- Perkins County, South Dakota
- Perquimans County, North Carolina
- Perry County, Alabama
- Perry County, Arkansas
- Perry County, Illinois
- Perry County, Indiana: Perry is named for U.S. naval officer Oliver Hazard Perry.
- Perry County, Kentucky
- Perry County, Mississippi
- Perry County, Missouri
- Perry County, Ohio
- Perry County, Pennsylvania: Formed in 1820, named for Oliver Hazard Perry, who died in 1819
- Perry County, Tennessee
- Pershing County, Nevada
- Person County, North Carolina
- City of Petersburg, Virginia — Named for 17th-century soldier Peter Jones, who commanded a fort near the city's current location and opened a trading post known as Peter's Point where the city was eventually founded.
- Petroleum County, Montana
- Pettis County, Missouri
- Phelps County, Missouri
- Phelps County, Nebraska
- Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania — Named by the city's founder William Penn from the Greek Φιλαδέλφεια, meaning "brotherly love" (from philos, "love", and adelphos, "brother").
- Phillips County, Arkansas
- Phillips County, Colorado: Phillips County is named for R.O. Phillips, a company secretary for the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad.
- Phillips County, Kansas: Phillips County is named for Williams Phillips, a free-state martyr who was killed September 1, 1856 in Leavenworth.
- Phillips County, Montana
- Piatt County, Illinois
- Pickaway County, Ohio
- Pickens County, Alabama
- Pickens County, Georgia
- Pickens County, South Carolina
- Pickett County, Tennessee
- Pierce County, Georgia
- Pierce County, Nebraska
- Pierce County, North Dakota
- Pierce County, Washington: Pierce is named for president Franklin Pierce.
- Pierce County, Wisconsin
- Pike County, Alabama — All Pike Counties in the United States are named for soldier and explorer Zebulon Pike.
- Pike County, Arkansas
- Pike County, Georgia
- Pike County, Illinois
- Pike County, Indiana
- Pike County, Kentucky
- Pike County, Mississippi
- Pike County, Missouri
- Pike County, Ohio
- Pike County, Pennsylvania
- Pima County, Arizona
- Pinal County, Arizona
- Pine County, Minnesota
- Pinellas County, Florida
- Pipestone County, Minnesota
- Piscataquis County, Maine
- Pitkin County, Colorado: Pitkin County is named for Frederick Walker Pitkin, who was Governor of Colorado at the time of the county's formation (1881).
- Pitt County, North Carolina
- Pittsburg County, Oklahoma
- Pittsylvania County, Virginia
- Piute County, Utah
- Placer County, California
- Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana
- Platte County, Missouri
- Platte County, Nebraska,
- Platte County, Wyoming
- Pleasants County, West Virginia
- Plumas County, California
- Plymouth County, Iowa
- Plymouth County, Massachusetts
- Pocahontas County, Iowa
- Pocahontas County, West Virginia
- Poinsett County, Arkansas
- Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana
- Polk County, Arkansas: Unless otherwise specified, all Polk Counties are named for James K. Polk, 11th President of the United States.
- Polk County, Florida
- Polk County, Georgia
- Polk County, Iowa
- Polk County, Minnesota
- Polk County, Missouri
- Polk County, Nebraska
- Polk County, North Carolina: For William Polk, a colonel in the American Revolution and a member of that state's House of Commons
- Polk County, Oregon
- Polk County, Tennessee — Named for James K. Polk before he became President; he was governor of Tennessee at the time the county was established.
- Polk County, Texas
- Polk County, Wisconsin
- Pondera County, Montana
- Pontotoc County, Mississippi
- Pontotoc County, Oklahoma
- Pope County, Arkansas
- Pope County, Illinois
- Pope County, Minnesota
- City of Poquoson, Virginia
- Portage County, Ohio
- Portage County, Wisconsin
- Porter County, Indiana: Porter is named for David Porter, a notable Commodore for the Americans during the War of 1812.
- City of Portsmouth, Virginia
- Posey County, Indiana: Posey is named for Thomas Posey, a governor of Indiana Territory.
- Pottawatomie County, Kansas
- Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma
- Pottawattamie County, Iowa
- Potter County, Pennsylvania
- Potter County, South Dakota
- Potter County, Texas
- Powder River County, Montana
- Powell County, Kentucky
- Powell County, Montana
- Power County, Idaho: For the American Falls Power Plant
- Poweshiek County, Iowa
- Powhatan County, Virginia
- Prairie County, Arkansas
- Prairie County, Montana
- Pratt County, Kansas
- Preble County, Ohio
- Prentiss County, Mississippi
- Presidio County, Texas
- Presque Isle County, Michigan: Derived from a French phrase for "peninsula," literally "almost an island."
- Preston County, West Virginia
- Price County, Wisconsin
- Prince Edward County, Virginia
- Prince George County, Virginia
- Prince George's County, Maryland
- Prince William County, Virginia
- Prince of Wales-Outer Ketchikan Census Area, Alaska
- Providence County, Rhode Island
- Prowers County, Colorado: Prowers County is named for cattleman and legislator John Wesley Prowers.
- Pueblo County, Colorado: Pueblo County is named for El Pueblo, an adobe trading post located at the confluence of the Arkansas River and Fountain Creek.
- Pulaski County, Arkansas
- Pulaski County, Georgia
- Pulaski County, Illinois
- Pulaski County, Indiana: Pulaski is named for Kazimierz Pulaski, an ally of the Americans during the Revolutionary War.
- Pulaski County, Kentucky
- Pulaski County, Missouri
- Pulaski County, Virginia
- Pushmataha County, Oklahoma
- Putnam County, Florida
- Putnam County, Georgia
- Putnam County, Illinois
- Putnam County, Indiana: Putnam is named for American Revolutionary War general Israel Putnam.
- Putnam County, Missouri
- Putnam County, New York
- Putnam County, Ohio
- Putnam County, Tennessee
- Putnam County, West Virginia
|Quay County||New Mexico||Named for Pennsylvania senator Matthew Quay, who supported New Mexican statehood.|
|Queen Anne's County||Maryland||Named for Anne, Queen of Great Britain, who reigned when the county was established in 1706.|
|Queens County||New York||Named for the then-queen consort, Catherine of Braganza, the Catholic wife of Charles II.|
|Quitman County||Georgia||Named after General John A. Quitman, leader in the Mexican War, and two-time Governor of Mississippi.|
- Rabun County, Georgia
- Racine County, Wisconsin: named after the city of Racine, itself named after the Root River, "racine" being French for "root"
- City of Radford, Virginia
- Rains County, Texas
- Raleigh County, West Virginia
- Ralls County, Missouri
- Ramsey County, Minnesota: named after Alexander Ramsey, first territorial governor of Minnesota and second governor after statehood
- Ramsey County, North Dakota
- Randall County, Texas
- Randolph County, Alabama
- Randolph County, Arkansas
- Randolph County, Georgia
- Randolph County, Illinois: named for Edmund Randolph, first Attorney General of the United States
- Randolph County, Indiana: named for Randolph County, North Carolina
- Randolph County, Missouri
- Randolph County, North Carolina
- Randolph County, West Virginia
- Rankin County, Mississippi
- Ransom County, North Dakota
- Rapides Parish, Louisiana
- Rappahannock County, Virginia
- Ravalli County, Montana
- Rawlins County, Kansas
- Ray County, Missouri
- Reagan County, Texas
- Real County, Texas
- Red Lake County, Minnesota
- Red River County, Texas
- Red River Parish, Louisiana
- Red Willow County, Nebraska
- Redwood County, Minnesota
- Reeves County, Texas
- Refugio County, Texas
- Reno County, Kansas
- Rensselaer County, New York
- Renville County, Minnesota
- Renville County, North Dakota
- Republic County, Kansas
- Reynolds County, Missouri
- Rhea County, Tennessee
- Rice County, Kansas
- Rice County, Minnesota
- Rich County, Utah
- Richardson County, Nebraska
- Richland County, Illinois
- Richland County, Montana
- Richland County, North Dakota
- Richland County, Ohio
- Richland County, South Carolina
- Richland County, Wisconsin
- Richland Parish, Louisiana
- City of Richmond, Virginia
- Richmond County, Georgia
- Richmond County, New York: Named after an illegitimate son of King Charles II of England.
- Richmond County, North Carolina
- Richmond County, Virginia
- Riley County, Kansas
- Ringgold County, Iowa
- Rio Arriba County, New Mexico
- Rio Blanco County, Colorado: Rio Blanco County is named for the White River (known in Spanish as the Río Blanco), which runs through the county.
- Rio Grande County, Colorado: Rio Grande County is named for the Rio Grande, which runs through the county.
- Ripley County, Indiana: Ripley is named for Eleazer W. Ripley, an officer of the War of 1812.
- Ripley County, Missouri
- Ritchie County, West Virginia
- Riverside County, California
- Roane County, Tennessee
- Roane County, West Virginia
- City of Roanoke and Roanoke County, Virginia — The county was named for the Roanoke River. The city, originally the town of Big Lick, was renamed for the county in 1882, two years before it became a city and legally separated from the county. The river in turn is believed to have been named after an Algonquian word for shells that were used as currency by Native American tribes in the region.
- Roberts County, South Dakota
- Roberts County, Texas
- Robertson County, Kentucky
- Robertson County, Tennessee
- Robertson County, Texas
- Robeson County, North Carolina
- Rock County, Minnesota
- Rock County, Nebraska
- Rock County, Wisconsin: after the Rock River 
- Rock Island County, Illinois
- Rockbridge County, Virginia
- Rockcastle County, Kentucky
- Rockdale County, Georgia
- Rockingham County, New Hampshire
- Rockingham County, North Carolina
- Rockingham County, Virginia
- Rockland County, New York
- Rockwall County, Texas
- Roger Mills County, Oklahoma
- Rogers County, Oklahoma
- Rolette County, North Dakota
- Rooks County, Kansas
- Roosevelt County, Montana
- Roosevelt County, New Mexico
- Roscommon County, Michigan: Named for County Roscommon, located in central Ireland.
- Roseau County, Minnesota
- Rosebud County, Montana
- Ross County, Ohio
- Routt County, Colorado: Routt County is named for John Long Routt, the last Territorial and first State Governor of Colorado.
- Rowan County, Kentucky
- Rowan County, North Carolina
- Runnels County, Texas
- Rush County, Indiana: Rush is named for Founding Father Benjamin Rush.
- Rush County, Kansas
- Rusk County, Texas
- Rusk County, Wisconsin
- Russell County, Alabama
- Russell County, Kansas
- Russell County, Kentucky
- Russell County, Virginia
- Rutherford County, North Carolina
- Rutherford County, Tennessee
- Rutland County, Vermont
- Lists of U.S. county name etymologies for links to the remainder of the list.
- "Nance County". Nebraska Association of County Officials. Retrieved 2010-05-25.
- Huden, John C. (1962). Indian Place Names of New England. New York: Museum of the American Indian. Cited in: Bright, William (2004). Native American Place Names in the United States. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, pg. 312
- Byington, Cyrus (1909). Choctaw Language Dictionary. Global Bible Society.
- Kansas Place-Names,John Rydjord, University of Oklahoma Press, 1972, ISBN 0-8061-0994-7
- "Nevada County History". US Gen Web Project in California. Retrieved 2010-05-25.
- Retrieved 2010-05-25
-  Retrieved 2010-05-25.
- "History of Ocean County". Ocean County Cultural and Heritage Commission. Retrieved 2007-05-09.
- "The Lenape Language". Retrieved 2007-05-09.
- Historical Sidebar: New Mexico Counties, Viva New Mexico!, c. 1996. Accessed 2008-05-01.
- "Rock county [origin of place name]". Wisconsin Historical Society. Retrieved 2008-10-16.