County (population 969,749 per Census 2000), located in northeast Virginia, in what is generally referred to the Northern Virginia area. It is the most populous single jurisdiction in Virginia, easily surpassing Virginia's largest city, Virginia Beach.

The County is bordered on all but two sides by the Potomac River, which forms a long shore running from north of Dranesville to the outlet of the Occoquan River at Belmont Bay. The Occoquan itself (partially impounded as the Occoquan Reservoir for most of its trip) and Bull Run form the southwestern boundary, and the northeastern boundary (with Loudoun County, Virginia) is on an imaginary diagonal, leading back up to the Potomac

Fairfax County was cut from the northeastern part of Prince William County, Virginia in 1742. Originally, it included all of what is now Loudoun County, but it was divided later on. The county was named for Thomas, the sixth Lord Fairfax.

Before World War II, Fairfax and environs were fairly sleepy; as late as 1930, the population was only 25,000. After the war, the numbers started to grow, and as the high-tech boom of the 1980s and 1990s set in, the population exploded.

Most of the population is spread out around the county, but concentrated in the Dulles Corridor area, inside the Beltway, and along Interstate 95. Being a suburb of D.C., there are many busy roads, places to shop, and housing developments. The southwestern part of the county, however, is still fairly rural, and along with the northen part of the county, is home to some of the highest-valued land.

There's only two incorporated towns in Fairfax County. Herndon, VA is one; Clifton, VA is the other (and Reston, VA is marked on some old maps as being incorporated, but this never went through).

In addition to the highways, there are two railroads (the Manassas Subdivision of the Southern Railway running though the middle of the county, and the old Richmond, Fredericksburg and Potomac running roughly alongside Interstate 95). The RF&P (which is owned and operated by CSX now) is the busier of the two, and both lines also carry the trains of the Virginia Railway Express on weekdays.

Like most of Northern Virginia, heavy industry is limited. Most of it is construction-related, producing concrete and asphalt. Also, the old Lorton Reformatory site hosts a few small factories and an incinerator plant.

Source: Some of this info was pulled from

Home of the Internet™

This has been the claim of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority for years, a sexy marketing slogan that, like many marketing slogans, holds little water under close examination. Most of the advertisements, banner ads, and radio spots do not mention why Fairfax County is the "Home of the Internet", just that it is the home, and then go on to mention other nice, sexy statistics, like the number of IT companies located in the county, the quality of the schools, and the high standard of living. But they do not say why Fairfax County is the internet's home.

The truth is revealed at Fairfax County is the Home of the Internet with more than 50 percent of Internet traffic worldwide passing through northern Virginia every day. Um. Ok. It seems that they said in the ads "Fairfax County, Virginia, Home of the Internet", not "Northern Virginia, Home of the Internet". Oops.

Um, it is "Home of the Internet" because half of the traffic passes through there? And that is all? Nothing about the traffic stopping, being related to any of the business, or anything like that. Important information, for sure, if you are bandwidth whore, this matters, or for server hosting, but otherwise?

I've got a better idea - how about "Fairfax County, Virginia, sprawling suburbia with lots of IT companies".. ok, maybe not. "Silicon... Marshland"? No. Perhaps they should just stick with the sexy slogan.

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