Most rural counties in Alabama

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July 25, 2022
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Most rural counties in Alabama

A surprising number of U.S. counties have 100% rural land-702, in fact. Stacker compiled a list of the most rural counties in Alabama using data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Counties are ranked by the percent of land area that is rural, as of the 2010 Census, with ties broken by residents per square mile, according to 2020 5-year population estimates.

According to the Census Bureau, rural land encompasses any land that isn't an urban area. To be considered an urban area, a place has to have a densely settled core of census tracts or blocks and count at least 2,500 people, at least 1,500 of whom must be residents of non-institutional buildings. Areas with 50,000 people or more are considered urbanized areas, while areas with between 2,500 and 50,000 people are considered urban clusters.

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Michael Rivera // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Dale County

- Rural area: 94.7% (531 square miles)
- Urban area: 5.3% (30 square miles)
- Total land area: 561 square miles
--- #63 largest county in state, #1,848 nationwide

- Population density: 87.8 people / square mile (49,293 residents)
--- #43 lowest density county in state, #2,155 nationwide

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Dailynetworks // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Colbert County

- Rural area: 95.5% (566 square miles)
- Urban area: 4.5% (26 square miles)
- Total land area: 593 square miles
--- #56 largest county in state, #1,650 nationwide

- Population density: 92.7 people / square mile (54,957 residents)
--- #47 lowest density county in state, #2,198 nationwide

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Rudi Weikard // Wikimedia Commons

#48. St. Clair County

- Rural area: 96.2% (608 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.8% (24 square miles)
- Total land area: 632 square miles
--- #42 largest county in state, #1,516 nationwide

- Population density: 140.7 people / square mile (88,929 residents)
--- #54 lowest density county in state, #2,442 nationwide

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Rivers Langley SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Russell County

- Rural area: 96.3% (617 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.7% (24 square miles)
- Total land area: 641 square miles
--- #40 largest county in state, #1,484 nationwide

- Population density: 90.4 people / square mile (57,938 residents)
--- #45 lowest density county in state, #2,182 nationwide

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Rivers Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Chambers County

- Rural area: 96.5% (575 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.6% (21 square miles)
- Total land area: 597 square miles
--- #54 largest county in state, #1,642 nationwide

- Population density: 56.0 people / square mile (33,427 residents)
--- #38 lowest density county in state, #1,792 nationwide

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Chris Pruitt // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Cullman County

- Rural area: 96.6% (710 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.4% (25 square miles)
- Total land area: 735 square miles
--- #27 largest county in state, #1,205 nationwide

- Population density: 113.4 people / square mile (83,345 residents)
--- #50 lowest density county in state, #2,342 nationwide

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Chris Pruitt // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Autauga County

- Rural area: 96.7% (575 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.3% (20 square miles)
- Total land area: 594 square miles
--- #55 largest county in state, #1,645 nationwide

- Population density: 93.6 people / square mile (55,639 residents)
--- #48 lowest density county in state, #2,204 nationwide

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Calvin Beale // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Coffee County

- Rural area: 96.8% (657 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.2% (21 square miles)
- Total land area: 679 square miles
--- #33 largest county in state, #1,382 nationwide

- Population density: 76.9 people / square mile (52,238 residents)
--- #41 lowest density county in state, #2,060 nationwide

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#42. Walker County

- Rural area: 96.9% (766 square miles)
- Urban area: 3.1% (25 square miles)
- Total land area: 791 square miles
--- #20 largest county in state, #1,087 nationwide

- Population density: 80.6 people / square mile (63,802 residents)
--- #42 lowest density county in state, #2,100 nationwide

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Rudi Weikard // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Cherokee County

- Rural area: 98.2% (543 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.8% (10 square miles)
- Total land area: 554 square miles
--- #66 largest county in state, #1,878 nationwide

- Population density: 47.0 people / square mile (26,035 residents)
--- #33 lowest density county in state, #1,627 nationwide

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Kreeder13 // Wikimedia Commons

#40. Pike County

- Rural area: 98.2% (660 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.8% (12 square miles)
- Total land area: 672 square miles
--- #34 largest county in state, #1,400 nationwide

- Population density: 49.5 people / square mile (33,274 residents)
--- #36 lowest density county in state, #1,683 nationwide

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DXR // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Dallas County

- Rural area: 98.3% (962 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.7% (17 square miles)
- Total land area: 979 square miles
--- #10 largest county in state, #706 nationwide

- Population density: 39.0 people / square mile (38,184 residents)
--- #29 lowest density county in state, #1,455 nationwide

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#38. Macon County

- Rural area: 98.4% (599 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.6% (10 square miles)
- Total land area: 609 square miles
--- #48 largest county in state, #1,592 nationwide

- Population density: 30.3 people / square mile (18,437 residents)
--- #23 lowest density county in state, #1,218 nationwide

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Rivers A. Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Tallapoosa County

- Rural area: 98.5% (706 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.5% (11 square miles)
- Total land area: 717 square miles
--- #29 largest county in state, #1,261 nationwide

- Population density: 56.5 people / square mile (40,450 residents)
--- #39 lowest density county in state, #1,799 nationwide

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Springfieldohio // Wikimedia Commons

#36. Jackson County

- Rural area: 98.8% (1,065 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.2% (13 square miles)
- Total land area: 1,078 square miles
--- #7 largest county in state, #591 nationwide

- Population density: 48.0 people / square mile (51,765 residents)
--- #35 lowest density county in state, #1,654 nationwide

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#35. Escambia County

- Rural area: 98.8% (934 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.2% (11 square miles)
- Total land area: 945 square miles
--- #12 largest county in state, #747 nationwide

- Population density: 38.9 people / square mile (36,775 residents)
--- #28 lowest density county in state, #1,452 nationwide

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#34. Bibb County

- Rural area: 98.8% (615 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.2% (7 square miles)
- Total land area: 623 square miles
--- #45 largest county in state, #1,551 nationwide

- Population density: 35.9 people / square mile (22,374 residents)
--- #25 lowest density county in state, #1,364 nationwide

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Rudi Weikard // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Franklin County

- Rural area: 98.9% (627 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.1% (7 square miles)
- Total land area: 634 square miles
--- #41 largest county in state, #1,509 nationwide

- Population density: 49.8 people / square mile (31,587 residents)
--- #37 lowest density county in state, #1,690 nationwide

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Chris Pruitt // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Covington County

- Rural area: 99.0% (1,020 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.0% (10 square miles)
- Total land area: 1,030 square miles
--- #8 largest county in state, #641 nationwide

- Population density: 36.0 people / square mile (37,096 residents)
--- #26 lowest density county in state, #1,369 nationwide

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#31. Chilton County

- Rural area: 99.0% (686 square miles)
- Urban area: 1.0% (7 square miles)
- Total land area: 693 square miles
--- #31 largest county in state, #1,352 nationwide

- Population density: 63.7 people / square mile (44,147 residents)
--- #40 lowest density county in state, #1,899 nationwide

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#30. Bullock County

- Rural area: 99.2% (618 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.8% (5 square miles)
- Total land area: 623 square miles
--- #44 largest county in state, #1,549 nationwide

- Population density: 16.3 people / square mile (10,173 residents)
--- #9 lowest density county in state, #778 nationwide

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Rivers Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#29. Barbour County

- Rural area: 99.2% (878 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.8% (7 square miles)
- Total land area: 885 square miles
--- #16 largest county in state, #902 nationwide

- Population density: 28.3 people / square mile (25,026 residents)
--- #22 lowest density county in state, #1,163 nationwide

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Rivers A. Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Randolph County

- Rural area: 99.3% (576 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.7% (4 square miles)
- Total land area: 581 square miles
--- #57 largest county in state, #1,697 nationwide

- Population density: 39.2 people / square mile (22,732 residents)
--- #30 lowest density county in state, #1,459 nationwide

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Rudi Weikard // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Blount County

- Rural area: 99.4% (641 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.7% (4 square miles)
- Total land area: 645 square miles
--- #38 largest county in state, #1,474 nationwide

- Population density: 89.6 people / square mile (57,755 residents)
--- #44 lowest density county in state, #2,173 nationwide

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Rudi Weikard // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Marion County

- Rural area: 99.4% (738 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.6% (5 square miles)
- Total land area: 742 square miles
--- #25 largest county in state, #1,188 nationwide

- Population density: 40.2 people / square mile (29,818 residents)
--- #31 lowest density county in state, #1,472 nationwide

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#25. Winston County

- Rural area: 99.4% (609 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.6% (4 square miles)
- Total land area: 613 square miles
--- #47 largest county in state, #1,579 nationwide

- Population density: 38.7 people / square mile (23,712 residents)
--- #27 lowest density county in state, #1,444 nationwide

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Altairisfar // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Clarke County

- Rural area: 99.4% (1,231 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.6% (7 square miles)
- Total land area: 1,238 square miles
--- #3 largest county in state, #493 nationwide

- Population density: 19.3 people / square mile (23,866 residents)
--- #11 lowest density county in state, #862 nationwide

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#23. DeKalb County

- Rural area: 99.4% (773 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.6% (4 square miles)
- Total land area: 777 square miles
--- #23 largest county in state, #1,115 nationwide

- Population density: 91.9 people / square mile (71,430 residents)
--- #46 lowest density county in state, #2,193 nationwide

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Chris Pruitt // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Butler County

- Rural area: 99.5% (773 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.5% (4 square miles)
- Total land area: 777 square miles
--- #24 largest county in state, #1,116 nationwide

- Population density: 25.4 people / square mile (19,726 residents)
--- #19 lowest density county in state, #1,084 nationwide

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#21. Marengo County

- Rural area: 99.5% (972 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.5% (5 square miles)
- Total land area: 977 square miles
--- #11 largest county in state, #709 nationwide

- Population density: 19.6 people / square mile (19,138 residents)
--- #12 lowest density county in state, #877 nationwide

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Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Monroe County

- Rural area: 99.5% (1,021 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.5% (5 square miles)
- Total land area: 1,026 square miles
--- #9 largest county in state, #646 nationwide

- Population density: 20.5 people / square mile (21,006 residents)
--- #13 lowest density county in state, #907 nationwide

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#19. Lawrence County

- Rural area: 99.5% (687 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.5% (3 square miles)
- Total land area: 691 square miles
--- #32 largest county in state, #1,356 nationwide

- Population density: 47.7 people / square mile (32,969 residents)
--- #34 lowest density county in state, #1,643 nationwide

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#18. Fayette County

- Rural area: 99.6% (625 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.5% (3 square miles)
- Total land area: 628 square miles
--- #43 largest county in state, #1,534 nationwide

- Population density: 26.1 people / square mile (16,406 residents)
--- #20 lowest density county in state, #1,102 nationwide

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Wmr36104 // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Geneva County

- Rural area: 99.6% (572 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.4% (2 square miles)
- Total land area: 574 square miles
--- #60 largest county in state, #1,735 nationwide

- Population density: 45.9 people / square mile (26,383 residents)
--- #32 lowest density county in state, #1,604 nationwide

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Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Hale County

- Rural area: 99.7% (642 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.3% (2 square miles)
- Total land area: 644 square miles
--- #39 largest county in state, #1,478 nationwide

- Population density: 22.9 people / square mile (14,754 residents)
--- #18 lowest density county in state, #1,001 nationwide

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Rivers Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Henry County

- Rural area: 99.7% (560 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.3% (2 square miles)
- Total land area: 562 square miles
--- #62 largest county in state, #1,842 nationwide

- Population density: 30.5 people / square mile (17,123 residents)
--- #24 lowest density county in state, #1,225 nationwide

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Chris Pruitt // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Conecuh County

- Rural area: 99.8% (848 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.3% (2 square miles)
- Total land area: 850 square miles
--- #18 largest county in state, #979 nationwide

- Population density: 14.4 people / square mile (12,219 residents)
--- #7 lowest density county in state, #721 nationwide

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Rivers Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Cleburne County

- Rural area: 100.0% (560 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 560 square miles
--- #64 largest county in state, #1,853 nationwide

- Population density: 26.7 people / square mile (14,952 residents)
--- #21 lowest density county in state, #1,116 nationwide

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Myself - Nathon Morris // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Lamar County

- Rural area: 100.0% (605 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 605 square miles
--- #52 largest county in state, #1,608 nationwide

- Population density: 22.9 people / square mile (13,854 residents)
--- #17 lowest density county in state, #1,000 nationwide

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#11. Pickens County

- Rural area: 100.0% (881 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 881 square miles
--- #17 largest county in state, #907 nationwide

- Population density: 22.7 people / square mile (20,049 residents)
--- #16 lowest density county in state, #991 nationwide

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Rivers Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Crenshaw County

- Rural area: 100.0% (609 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 609 square miles
--- #49 largest county in state, #1,594 nationwide

- Population density: 22.7 people / square mile (13,826 residents)
--- #15 lowest density county in state, #989 nationwide

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JNix // Shutterstock

#9. Clay County

- Rural area: 100.0% (604 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 604 square miles
--- #53 largest county in state, #1,615 nationwide

- Population density: 22.0 people / square mile (13,285 residents)
--- #14 lowest density county in state, #963 nationwide

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Rivers A. Langley; SaveRivers // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Coosa County

- Rural area: 100.0% (651 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 651 square miles
--- #36 largest county in state, #1,449 nationwide

- Population density: 16.4 people / square mile (10,696 residents)
--- #10 lowest density county in state, #783 nationwide

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Idawriter // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Washington County

- Rural area: 100.0% (1,080 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 1,080 square miles
--- #6 largest county in state, #590 nationwide

- Population density: 15.1 people / square mile (16,336 residents)
--- #8 lowest density county in state, #744 nationwide

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RuralSWAlabama (Billy Milstead) // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Choctaw County

- Rural area: 100.0% (914 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 914 square miles
--- #13 largest county in state, #813 nationwide

- Population density: 14.0 people / square mile (12,755 residents)
--- #6 lowest density county in state, #707 nationwide

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#5. Sumter County

- Rural area: 100.0% (904 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 904 square miles
--- #14 largest county in state, #835 nationwide

- Population density: 13.9 people / square mile (12,595 residents)
--- #5 lowest density county in state, #705 nationwide

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Altairisfar // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Lowndes County

- Rural area: 100.0% (716 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 716 square miles
--- #30 largest county in state, #1,266 nationwide

- Population density: 13.9 people / square mile (9,936 residents)
--- #4 lowest density county in state, #703 nationwide

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#3. Greene County

- Rural area: 100.0% (647 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 647 square miles
--- #37 largest county in state, #1,463 nationwide

- Population density: 12.7 people / square mile (8,221 residents)
--- #3 lowest density county in state, #664 nationwide

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#2. Perry County

- Rural area: 100.0% (720 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 720 square miles
--- #28 largest county in state, #1,246 nationwide

- Population density: 12.7 people / square mile (9,104 residents)
--- #2 lowest density county in state, #662 nationwide

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#1. Wilcox County

- Rural area: 100.0% (888 square miles)
- Urban area: 0.0% (0 square miles)
- Total land area: 888 square miles
--- #15 largest county in state, #895 nationwide

- Population density: 11.9 people / square mile (10,552 residents)
--- #1 lowest density county in state, #630 nationwide

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