Albemarle County, Virginia

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Albemarle County, Virginia
Albemarle County Office Building.jpg
The Albemarle County Office Building
Seal of Albemarle County, Virginia
Map of Virginia highlighting Albemarle County
Location in the U.S. state of Virginia
Map of the United States highlighting Virginia
Virginia's location in the U.S.
Founded 1744
Named for Willem Anne van Keppel, 2nd Earl of Albemarle[1]
Seat Charlottesville
Largest town Scottsville
 • Total 726 sq mi (1,880 km2)
 • Land 721 sq mi (1,867 km2)
 • Water 5 sq mi (13 km2), 0.7%
Population (est.)
 • (2016) 105,715
 • Density 147/sq mi (57/km²)
Congressional district 5th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Albemarle County is a county located in the Piedmont region of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Its county seat is Charlottesville, which is an independent city enclave entirely surrounded by the county.[2] Albemarle County is part of the Charlottesville Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Albemarle County was created in 1744 from the western portion of Goochland County, though portions of Albemarle were later carved out to create other counties. Albemarle County was named in honor of Willem Anne van Keppel, 2nd Earl of Albemarle. However, its most famous inhabitant was Thomas Jefferson, who built his estate home, Monticello, in the county.

As of the 2010 census, the population was 98,970.[3] The population has more than tripled since the 1960 census.


Thomas Jefferson lived most of his life in Albemarle County

At the time of European encounter, the inhabitants of the area that became Albemarle County were a Siouan-speaking tribe called the Saponi.[4] In 1744, the Virginia General Assembly created Albemarle County from the western portion of Goochland County.[5] The county was named in honor of Willem Anne van Keppel, 2nd Earl of Albemarle and titular Governor of Virginia at the time.[6] The large county was partitioned in 1761, forming Buckingham and Amherst counties, at which time the county seat was moved from the formerly central Scottsville to a piece of newly central land, christened Charlottesville.[6] In 1777, Albemarle County was divided and Fluvanna County established, finalizing the boundaries of modern Albemarle County.

Albemarle County is well known for its association with President and Founding Father Thomas Jefferson, who was born in the County at Shadwell, though it was then part of Goochland County.[7] However, his home of Monticello is located in the County.[8]


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 726 square miles (1,880 km2), of which 721 square miles (1,870 km2) is land and 5 square miles (13 km2) (0.7%) is water.[9]


The Rivanna River's south fork forms in Albemarle County and was historically important for transportation. The south fork flows in-between Darden Towe Park and Pen Park. Boat ramp access is available at Dardent Towe Park. The James River acts as a natural boarder between Albemarle and Buckingham Counties.

Major highways[edit]

Protected areas[edit]

Albemarle's western border with Augusta and Rockingham Counties is located within the Shenandoah National Park.

Adjacent counties[edit]

Albemarle County borders 8 other counties, more than any other county in Virginia.

Parks and recreation[edit]


Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 12,585
1800 16,439 30.6%
1810 18,268 11.1%
1820 19,750 8.1%
1830 22,618 14.5%
1840 22,294 −1.4%
1850 25,800 15.7%
1860 26,625 3.2%
1870 27,544 3.5%
1880 32,618 18.4%
1890 32,379 −0.7%
1900 28,473 −12.1%
1910 29,871 4.9%
1920 26,005 −12.9%
1930 26,981 3.8%
1940 24,652 −8.6%
1950 26,662 8.2%
1960 30,969 16.2%
1970 37,780 22.0%
1980 55,783 47.7%
1990 68,040 22.0%
2000 79,236 16.5%
2010 98,970 24.9%
Est. 2016 105,715 [10] 6.8%
U.S. Decennial Census[11]
1790-1960[12] 1900-1990[13]
1990-2000[14] 2010-2015[3]

The largest self-reported ancestry groups in Albemarle County are English 16.3%, German 16.0%, Irish 12.7%, "American" 11.4% and Italian 5.2%.[15]

As of the census[16] of 2010, there were 98,970 people, 38,157 households, and 24,578 families residing in the county. The population density was 137 people per square mile (52.8/km²). There were 42,122 housing units at an average density of 58 per square mile (22.4/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 80.6% White, 9.7% Black or African American, 0.3% Native American, 4.7% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 2.3% from other races, and 2.4% from two or more races. 5.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 38,157 households out of which 28.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.4% were married couples living together, 9.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.6% were non-families. 28.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 25.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.41 and the average family size was 2.96.

In the county, the population was spread out with 21.5% under the age of 18, 12.3% from 18 to 24, 24.7% from 25 to 44, 27.2% from 45 to 64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38.2 years. For every 100 females there were 92.69 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.59 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $63,001, and the median income for a family was $98,934. Males had a median income of $55,530 versus $52,211 for females. The per capita income for the county was $36,718. About 3.8% of families and 10.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.0% of those under age 18 and 2.4% of those age 65 or over.


Albemarle County vote
by party in presidential elections
Year Republican Democratic
2016 33.9% 19,259 58.8% 33,345
2012 43.2% 23,297 55.2% 29,757
2008 40.4% 20,576 58.4% 29,792
2004 48.5% 21,189 50.5% 22,088
2000 49.6% 18,291 44.1% 16,255
1996 48.8% 15,243 45.1% 14,089
1992 43.7% 13,894 43.7% 13,886
1988 58.7% 15,117 40.2% 10,363
1984 64.2% 14,455 35.4% 7,982
1980 53.2% 10,424 37.2% 7,293
1976 54.6% 9,084 44.0% 7,310
1972 65.2% 8,447 33.2% 4,303
1968 53.5% 4,512 26.7% 2,255
1964 51.5% 3,251 48.5% 3,062
1960 59.5% 3,135 39.9% 2,102

Albemarle is governed by an elected six-member Board of Supervisors. Management of the County is vested in a Board-appointed County Executive.[17]

Board of Supervisors of Albemarle County[18]
Name Party First Election District
  Jane Dittmar (Chair) Dem 2013 Scottsville
  Diantha McKeel (Vice-Chair) Ind 2013 Jack Jouett
  Liz Palmer Dem 2013 Samuel Miller
  Brad Sheffield Dem 2013 Rio
  Ann Mallek Dem 2007 White Hall
  Kenneth Boyd Rep 2003 Rivanna

There are also several elected Constitutional Officers:

  • Clerk of the Circuit Court: John Zugg (D)
  • Commonwealth's Attorney: Robert Tracy (R)
  • Sheriff: J.E. "Chip" Harding (R)

The nonpartisan School Board is also elected. Its members are:[19]

  • Kate Acuff (Chair, Jack Jouett district)
  • Pamela Moynihan (Rio district)
  • Jason Buyaki (Rivanna district)
  • Graham Paige (Samuel Miller district)
  • Stephen Koleszar (Vice Chair, Scottsville district)
  • David Oberg (White Hall district)
  • Jonno Alcaro(At Large)

Albemarle is represented by Republican Bryce Reeves and Democrat Creigh Deeds in the Virginia State Senate, Republican Steve Landes Democrat David Toscano, Republican Rob Bell, and Republican Matt Fariss in the Virginia House of Delegates, and Republican Robert Hurt in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Emergency services[edit]

Earlysville Volunteer Fire Company Engine 45 at the Independence Day Parade.
Crozet Volunteer Fire Department Engine 52 truck during the same parade.

Albemarle County has two branches of law enforcement, the Albemarle County Police Department, which handles criminal matters and is directed by the appointed police chief, Colonel Steve Sellers. The second branch is the Albemarle County Sheriff's Office, which handles civil service in the county and they are directed by the elected Sheriff Chip Harding.

EMS services are provided by three volunteer rescue squads and Albemarle County Fire Rescue. The Charlottesville-Albemarle Rescue Squad, located in the City of Charlottesville provides services at night and on weekends in isolated areas throughout the county, the Western Albemarle Rescue Squad, located in Crozet, and the Scottsville Volunteer Rescue Squad, located in the Town of Scottsville. Albemarle County Fire Rescue operates 6 Advance Life Support ambulances, Medic 4 (Earlysville), Medic 8 (Seminole), Medic 11 (Monticello), Medic 12 (Hollymead), Medic 15 (Ivy), and Medic 16 (Pantops).

Albemarle County Fire/Rescue system is a combination system that consists of seven volunteer stations and three career stations(Hollymead, Ivy and Monticello). Three of the volunteer stations are staffed 24 hours a day by volunteers. The other volunteer stations are supplemented by career staff during normal work hours(Monday - Friday, 6AM - 6PM). Volunteers staff these stations weeknights from 6PM - 6AM as well as all hours of the weekend and holidays. The three career stations are staffed 24 hours by career firefighters. Both volunteer and career firefighters are equally trained and work hand in hand to provide high quality, round-the-clock Fire and EMS services to the citizens of Albemarle County.

Albemarle County Fire Rescue has begun planning to build a station in the eastern portion of the county near Pantops area slated to open in Fall 2018.

Fire stations[20][edit]

Rescue squads[20][edit]


The Albemarle County Public School System operates public education in the County, including Murray High School, a charter school, that is located in the City of Charlottesville. The School Board and the Superintendent, Dr. Pamela Moran, work closely together in operating the Albemarle County Public School System.

The School Board has 7 members, elected by Magisterial District:

  • Kate Acuff (Chair, Jack Jouett district)
  • Pamela Moynihan (Rio district)
  • Jason Buyaki (Rivanna district)
  • Graham Paige (Samuel Miller district)
  • Stephen Koleszar (Vice Chair, Scottsville district)
  • David Oberg (White Hall district)
  • Jonno Alcaro (At Large)

Many private schools in Albemarle serve the County and students from surrounding areas. These include:

Some students attend several private schools in the City of Charlottesville.

Jefferson-Madison Regional Library is the regional library system that provides services to the citizens of Albemarle.


The city of Charlottesville is enclaved within Albemarle County. Under Virginia law in effect since 1871, all municipalities in the state incorporated as cities are legally and politically independent of any county.


There is only one incorporated town in Albemarle County:

Census-designated places[edit]

Other unincorporated communities[edit]

Notable residents[edit]

United States President and Governor of Virginia Thomas Jefferson's home, Monticello, is located in Albemarle County.
United States President and Governor of Virginia James Monroe's home, Ash Lawn-Highland, is located in Albemarle County.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "County Overview". County of Albemarle. Archived from the original on 19 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-14. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on 2011-05-31. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 31, 2013. 
  4. ^ Swanton, John R. (1952), The Indian Tribes of North America, Smithsonian Institution, p. 72, ISBN 0-8063-1730-2, OCLC 52230544 
  5. ^ Pawlett, Nathaniel (1976). "An Index to Roads Shown in the Albemarle County Surveyors Books 1744-1853" (PDF). Charlottesville, Virginia: Virginia Highway & Transportation Research Council. Archived (PDF) from the original on 30 October 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-11. 
  6. ^ a b Atkins, Ace (2007-03-27). "A county by any other name?". C-Ville Weekly. Portico Publications. Retrieved 2008-10-11. 
  7. ^ Henry Stephens Randall, The Life of Thomas Jefferson
  8. ^ "Albemarle County". Commonwealth of Virginia. Retrieved 2008-10-11. Albemarle County is widely recognized as rich in history and beauty. Among its historic attractions are Monticello, home to President Thomas Jefferson... 
  9. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  10. ^ "Virginia Population Estimates". Weldon Cooper Center for Public Center at the University of Virginia. Retrieved February 12, 2016. 
  11. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on May 12, 2015. Retrieved December 31, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved December 31, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 31, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 31, 2013. 
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-04-17. Retrieved 2015-03-19. 
  16. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2011-05-14. 
  17. ^ "County Executive". County of Albemarle, VA. Retrieved 21 June 2015. 
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^ a b
  21. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Who Was Who in America, Historical Volume, 1607-1896. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1963. 
  22. ^ Obituary of Claude Hampton Hall (1922-2001), Bryan-College Station, Texas, Eagle, April 4, 2001

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 38°02′N 78°34′W / 38.03°N 78.56°W / 38.03; -78.56