Mecklenburg County was founded on February 26, 1763. Residents chose the name Mecklenburg in hopes of gaining favor with King George III of England, whose wife, Queen Charlotte, was born in a German province of that name.
The N.C. State Constitution, approved in 1868, gave the citizens of a county the authority to elect the officials who governed them called a Board of County Commissioners. From 1868 to 1986, Mecklenburg County followed the same basic plan of a five-member Board, elected at-large. In December 1986, the first seven-member district/at-large Board took office, launching a district plan approved by a county-wide vote in 1984. In December 1994, the first nine-member district/at-large Board took office. This re-districting plan was approved by voters in 1993, with six commissioners elected from single-member districts, and three at-large members elected by a county-wide vote.
In 1962, the County Manager form of administration was adopted in Mecklenburg County. The County Manager is the chief administrative officer of Mecklenburg County Government. Appointed by the Board of County Commissioners, the County Manager implements Board policies; represents the County in dealings with other governmental units and agencies; recommends the annual budget to the Board; and, with the help of a management team of General Managers, and department directors, coordinates the work of all County agencies.