Alberta's Counties

Alberta was formally declared a province in the Confederation of Canada on 1 Sep 1905. Previously the area was part of the Northwest Territories and Rupert's Land, purchased from the Hudson's Bay Company by Canada in 1869.

Throughout the 18th and 19th century, European influence in the area was predominantly a result of the French, and later English, fur trade. Indigenous societies long pre-date the arrival of European influences and continue to be a vital force in the province.

As the 19th century progressed, interest in the area shifted to its agricultural potential and location as a bridge between the province of British Columbia and Eastern Canada.

In 1901 the population of what would become Alberta was estimated at 73,022, by 1911 it had more than tripled to 374,295. In 1947 oil was struck at Leduc, setting off an oil boom that continues to dominate the Alberta economy. As of 2018, the population of Alberta has reached 4.32 million, with the majority in urban centers.

At present, Alberta has three types of local area jurisdictions: urban, rural and specialized municipalities. Urban municipalities include: cities, towns, villages, and summer villages. Municipal districts, also known as counties, provide for the administration of rural areas. Metis settlements and First Nation reserves are also found within the province.

Although exact names, status and boundaries of municipalities have changed, many of the local areas date back to the birth of the Province.

Alberta Counties
Sort by Map # Sort Alphabetically
1Mackenzie County
2Wood Buffalo National Park
3Wood Buffalo Regional Municipality
4Northern Lights County
5Northern Sunrise County (East Peace)
6Opportunity M.D.
7Clear Hills County
8Saddle Hills County
9Spirit River M.D.
10Fairview M.D.
11Peace M.D.
Homesteaders began arriving around 1910. The municipal district of Peace #135 was established in 1916, and incorporated 2 Jan 1917. The office was first located in West Peace River, moved to Bear Lake Settlement in 1920, then to its present location in Berwyn about 1922.
12Birch Hills County
13Smoky River M.D.
14Big Lakes M.D.
15Lesser Slave River M.D.
16Lac La Biche County (Lakeland)
17Grande Prairie County
The first white man in the area is thought to have been Peter Pond, who, in 1778, explored the area seeking new territory for trapping. He created a map of the area which was published in 1785 and used by the North-West Company formed in 1787. By 1798 the NWC had established a trading post near present-day Fort St John. The Hudson's Bay Company's first post in the area was built in 1803 near present-day Fort Vermilion. By 1900 settlers had started trickling in but the area wasn't surveyed or settled in earnest until Walter G. McFarlane, a dominion land surveyor, and his brother James first surveyed the land in 1909 and then settled there in 1910. By 1912 the Rural Municipality of Grande Prairie had been established. 
18Greenview M.D.
19Woodlands County
20Barrhead County
21Westlock County
22Athabasca County
23Thorhild County
24Smoky Lake County
24Smoky Lake County
25St Paul County
26Bonnyville M.D.
28Yellowhead County
29Lac Ste Anne County
30Sturgeon County
Originally inhabited by Indigenous, later by Metis, and later still by homesteaders who took up land after the government had it surveyed. While the homesteaders spoke primarily English, the area also had a prominent French presence which is evidenced by the places names of Villeneuve, Morinville, and St Albert.
31Lamont County
32Two Hills County
33Vermilion River County
34Parkland County
35Edmonton
36Strathcona County
37Beaver County
38Minburn County
39Jasper National Park
40Brazeau County
41Leduc County
42Wetaskiwin County
43Camrose County
Prior to European settlement, the area was inhabited primarily by Blackfoot and Cree tribes, the latter of whom were the main guides and traders for explorers and fur traders. During the fur trade many Metis families were created and many more moved from Manitoba. However documented European settlement started about 1881 when Father Beillevaire opened a mission on the south side of Battle River. He named the settlement Duhamel in honour of Archbishop Duhamel of Ottawa.

Camrose County is approximately 95 km long north to south, and 60 km wide west to east. The Battle River, which flows through the center of the county, was named after a war between the Cree and Blackfoot bands over hunting territory.  The county includes the city of Camrose, Armena, Bashaw, Bawlf, Bittern Lake, Duhamel, Edberg, Ferintosh, Haylakes, Kelsey, Kingman, Meeting Creek, New Norway, Ohaton, Rosalind, Roundhill, and Tillicum Beach.
44Flagstaff County
45Wainwright M.D.
46Clearwater County
47Ponoka County
Established 1 Jan 1952
48Lacombe County
49Red Deer County
50Stettler County
51Paintearth County
52Provost M.D.
53Banff National Park
54Jasper
55Bighorn M.D.
56Mountain View County
57Kneehill County
58Starland County
59Special Area #2
60Special Area #4
Homesteaders started arriving around 1900, however the land is in the dry belt and made for very difficult farming and many original settlers moved on to more fertile parts of Alberta.
61Special Area #3
62Acadia M.D.
63Kananaskis County
64Rocky View M.D.
65Calgary
66Wheatland County
Settlers started arriving in 1883 when construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway reached the area.
67Foothills M.D.
68Vulcan County
69Newell County
70Cypress County
71Ranchland M.D.
72Willow Creek M.D.
73Lethbridge County
74Taber M.D.
75Forty Mile County
76Pincher Creek M.D.
77Waterton National Park
78Cardston County
79Warner County