Alabama has sixty-seven counties. The oldest is Washington County (created June 4, 1800) and the youngest is Houston County (created February 9, 1903).
Alabama was claimed by Spain, as Spanish Florida, and by England, as the Province of Carolina. The first permanent colony was made by the French on the banks of the Mobile River in 1702.
After the American Revolutionary War, West Florida south of the 31st parallel became a part of Spain while most of the rest was put in the Mississippi Territory. The territorial assembly established some of the earliest county divisions which have survived to the present. In 1817 the western part of the territory became the State of Mississippi and the remainder the Alabama Territory. The Alabama territorial legislature made some more counties.
Alabama became the 22nd state of the United States in 1819. The Alabama state legislature made more counties from former Indian lands as the Indian Removal Act took effect and settlers populated different areas of Alabama.
In 1820, Alabama had 29 counties. By 1830 there were 36, with Indians still occupying land in northeast and far western Alabama. By 1840, 49 counties had been created; 52 by 1850; 65 by 1870; and the present 67 counties by 1903.
According to 2006 U. S. Census estimates, the average population of Alabama’s sixty-seven counties is 68,642, with Jefferson County has the most people (656,700), and Greene County (9,374) the least. The average land area is 757 sq mi (1,960.6 km2). The largest county is Baldwin (1,596 sq mi (4,133.6 km2)) and the smallest is Etowah (535 sq mi (1,385.6 km2)).
Alabama Counties Created From Native American Lands
Alabama was admitted as the 22nd state in 1819. The Alabama legislature formed additional counties from former native lands as the Indian Removal Act took effect and settlers populated different areas of Alabama. In 1820, Alabama had 29 counties. Native Americans still occupied large areas of land in northeast and far western Alabama. By 1840, 49 counties had been created; 52 by 1850; 65 by 1870; and the present 67 counties by 1903. Houston County was the last county created on February 9, 1903. The average area is 805 sq mi. The smallest is Etowah.