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Established in 1982 as a successor to Dorchester County, La Nouvelle-Beauce is made of 11 municipalities and is mainly French-speaking (99.2% French-speaking in 2006) and rural. Sainte-Marie, the county seat, is the most populous municipality.
The name of La Nouvelle-Beauce reminds the one given to the area along the Chaudière River by the French authorities until the end of the French Regime in North America.