Lawrence county is in the Eastern Coal Field region of Kentucky. The elevation in the county ranges from 515 to 1320 feet above sea level.
It was formed in 1822 from Floyd and Greenup counties. The county seat is Louisa. Lawrence county was a source of Carter (1838), Johnson (1843), Boyd (1860), Elliott (1869), and Martin (1870) counties.
In 2010 the county population was 15,860 in a land area of 415.60 square miles, an average of 38.2 people per square mile.
The equine population was 500 in the 2012 Kentucky Equine Survey.
Lawrence county was named for Captain James Lawrence, who was killed while commanding the U.S.S. Chesapeake during the War of 1812.