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. The population has more than tripled since the 1960 census.
At the time of European encounter, the inhabitants of the area that became Albemarle County were a Siouan-speaking tribe called the Saponi. In 1744, the Virginia General Assembly created Albemarle County from the western portion of Goochland County. The county was named in honor of Willem Anne van Keppel, 2nd Earl of Albemarle and titular Governor of Virginia at the time. 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. 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. However, his home of Monticello is located in the County.
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.