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ALABAMA, ăl′ȧ-bä′mȧ, known as the “Cotton State.” One of the Gulf States of the American Union, situated between lat. 30° 10′ and 35° N., long. 84° 53′ and 88° 30′ W. It is bounded on the north by Tennessee, on the east by Georgia, on the south by Florida and the Gulf of Mexico, on the west by Mississippi; length, about 330 miles from north to south; average width, 175 miles; total area, 52,250 square miles, of which 710 square miles is water (Map: United States, J 4). Alabama, by the census of 1900, ranks as the eighteenth State in the Union in population, the twenty-seventh in size, and ninth in order of admission.

Topography. The southern extremity of the Appalachian mountain system extends into the State from northern Georgia in a series of low parallel ranges. Of these, Raccoon and Lookout mountains are the most prominent, but do not attain any great elevation. They are flat-topped ridges, about 1000 feet in elevation at the Georgia line, gradually lowering to the westward, the Raccoon Mountains extending in a very low range (called Sand Mountains) well across the State, while the Lookout Mountains terminate abruptly after reaching a distance of about 60 miles within the State. To the southeast of these ranges lies the comparatively level Piedmont region. To the southwest, at the very terminus of the mountain system, is the low-lying Cumberland plateau—the coal-fields of Alabama. On the north of all these are the lower lands of the Tennessee valley. The whole region just described includes the northeast two-fifths of the State. The remainder, the southwest three-fifths of the State, constitutes the coastal plain, which slopes gradually from an elevation of about 600 feet to sea level.

NIE 1905 Alabama.jpg


County Map
 County Seat.   Area in 

1890. 1900.

Autauga C 3  Prattville 595  13,330  17,915
Baldwin B 5  Daphne 1,591  8,941  13,194
Barbour D 4  Clayton 920   34,898   35,152
Bibb B 3  Centerville 622  13,824  18,498
Blount C 1  Oneonto 752  21,927  23,119
Bullock D 3  Union Springs 609  27,063  31,944
Butler C 4  Greenville 769  21,641  25,761
Calhoun D 2  Anniston 636  33,835  34,874
Chambers D 3  Lafayette 590  26,319  32,554
Cherokee D l  Center 582  20,459  21,096
Chilton C 3  Clanton 703  14,549  16,522
Choctaw A 4  Butler 912  17,526  18,136
Clarke B 4  Grovehill 1,213  22,624  27,790
Clay D 2  Ashland 694  15,765  17,099
Cleburne D 2  Edwardsville 563  13,218  13,206
Coffee C 4  Elba 677  12,170  20,972
Colbert B 1  Tuscumbia 581  30,189  22,341
Conecuh B 4  Evergreen 831  14,594  17,514
Coosa C 3  Rockford 671  15,906  16,144
Covington C 4  Andalusia 1,029  7,536  15,346
Crenshaw C 4  Luverne 612  15,425  19,668
Cullman C 1  Cullman 595  13,439  17,849
Dale D 4  Ozark 654  17,225  21,189
Dallas B 3  Selma 982  49,350  54,657
Dekalb D 1  Fort Payne 782  21,106  23,558
Elmore C 3  Wetumpka 631  21,732  26,099
Escambia B 4  Brewton 968  8,666  11,320
Etowah C 1  Gadsden 533  21,926  27,361
Fayette B 2  Fayette 647  12,823  14,132
Franklin A 1  Russellville 689  10,681  16,511
Geneva D 4  Geneva 662  10,690  19,096
Greene B 3  Eutaw 682  23,007  24,182
Hale B 3  Greensboro 726  27,501  31,011
Henry D 4  Abbeville 992  24,847  36,147
Jackson C 1  Scottsboro 1,163  28,026  30,508
Jefferson C 2  Birmingham 1,059  88,501  140,420
Lamar A 2  Vernon 606  14,187  16,084
Lauderdale B 1  Florence 702  23,739  26,559
Lawrence B 1  Moulton 642  20,725  20,124
Lee D 3  Opelika 631  28,694  31,826
Limestone B 1  Athens 600  21,201  22,387
Lowndes C 3  Hayneville 747  31,550  35,651
Macon D 3  Tuskegee 615  18,439  23,126
Madison C 1  Huntsville 806  38,119  43,702
Marengo B 3  Linden 978  33,095  38,315
Marion A 1  Hamilton 744  11,347  14,494
Marshall C 1  Guntersville 590  18,935  23,289
Mobile A 5  Mobile 1,278  51,587  62,740
Monroe B 4  Monroeville 1,037  18,990  23,666
Montgomery  C 3  Montgomery 809  56,172  72,047
Morgan C 1  Decatur 589  24,089  28,820
Perry B 3  Marion 758  29,333  31,783
Pickens A 2  Carrollton 937  32,470  24,402
Pike C 4  Troy 684  24,423  29,172
Randolph D 2  Wedowee 579  17,219  21,647
Russell D 3  Seale 652  24,093  27,083
St. Clair C 2  Asheville 650  17,353  19,425
Shelby C 2  Columbiana 829  20,886  23,684
Sumter A 3  Livingston 896  29,574  32,710
Talladega C 2  Talladega 677  29,346  35,773
Tallapoosa D 3  Dadeville 759  25,460  29,675
Tuscaloosa B 2  Tuscaloosa 1,371  30,352  36,147
Walker B 2  Jasper 860  16,078  25,162
Washington A 4  Saint Stephens 1,050  7,935  11,134
Wilcox  B 3   B 4   Camden 914  30,816  35,631
Winston B 1  Double Springs  634  6,552  9,554

Climate and Soil. Excepting in the lowland along the rivers, the climate is very healthful, particularly in the north. Extremes of temperature are rare, the mean temperature for January being 42.9° and for July 83.9°. The summer heat is tempered by winds from the gulf. Snow falls occasionally in January and February, but rarely in the south; the frost limits at Montgomery are October 10 and April 25. The prevailing winds for the whole year are from the south and southwest.

The average temperature and rainfall in the north are 59.70° and 54 inches respectively, gradually increasing to 66.60° and 63 inches in the south.

The valley of the Tennessee has chiefly a deep red calcareous soil, utilized for the cultivation of cereals; that in the metamorphic legion is a red or gray loam with clay subsoil; in the coal regions it is sandy, with sand or clay subsoil; the north or middle divisions are bordered by a wide belt of red or yellow loam over stratified rocks and pebbles, and are heavily wooded; the cotton belt has a heavy black calcareous soil from two to twenty feet deep, forming a portion of the so-called “black belt” of the Southern States. South of this, brown and red clay loams predominate. In the extreme southern counties the soil is light and sandy. Swamp land occupies considerable areas in various parts of the State.

Geology. The stratified rocks represent every formation occurring in the Appalachian region. There are three geological divisions of Alabama, namely: The northern, containing most of the State north and west of a line from the northeast corner of the State through Birmingham nearly to Tuscaloosa, and including the great Tennessee valley, in which the rock masses belong to the Sub-carboniferous limestones and the Coal measures; their strata are approximately horizontal. Adjoining this on the east is the middle region, bounded by a line drawn from Tuscaloosa through Centreville, Clanton, and Wetumpka to Columbus, Ga. This includes (1) the metamorphic region, with altered and crystalline sediments of Silurian or preceding ages—quartzites, marbles, granites, and gneisses; the strata in many places disintegrated into masses of stratified clay and interlaminated with quartz seams. (2) The Coosa valley, with prevailing calcareous rocks. (3) The Coosa and Cahaba coal fields, their strata consisting of sandstones, conglomerates, shales, and coal beds, tilted and unequally de-graded. This division contains some of the highest land in the State. The southern division, south and west of these limits, including the cotton belts, consists largely of drift deposits irregularly stratified over the eroded surface of Cretaceous and Tertiary rocks. Clark County, between the Alabama and Tombigbee, is rich in fossil remains of Cretaceous and Tertiary age.

Mineral Resources. The southern limit of the mineral region may be indicated by a line passing through Pikeville, Tuscaloosa, and Wetumpka to Columbus, Ga. Within this area are the comparatively insignificant gold deposits of Randolph County, and three fields of bituminous coal over 8660 square miles in extent, named from the rivers that drain them—the Warrior, the Cahaba, and the Coosa. Cannel, free-burning, lump, coking, gas, and other coals of superior quality are found. There are extensive beds of iron ore, including red hematite, limonite, black-band, drift, magnetic, and specular; and the Choccolocco, Anniston, Coosa, Cahaba, Birmingham, and other valleys are noted for the abundance of their iron ore. Among other mineral products are asbestos, asphalt, copper, corundum, emery, fire-clay, graphite, granite, lithographic stone, manganese, white and variegated marble, marl, red ochre, phosphates, bauxite, pottery and porcelain clays, salt (in the southwest), slate, soapstone, and small amounts of silver and tin. Natural gas has also been discovered, but the supply is inconsiderable.

Mining.—It is not until recent years that the great mineral resources of the State have been extensively exploited. This recent growth of the mining industry has been largely responsible for the quickening of the general industrial life of the State, and the creation of a most optimistic spirit concerning her future industrial progress. Coal and iron are the leading minerals, and the immediate proximity of these constitutes an advantage not enjoyed in the more extensively developed iron mining districts of Lake Superior. The industry has attained its greatest development in the Birmingham region. The value of bituminous coal mined in the State rose from $2,500,000 in 1886 to $5,000,000 in 1898 and $10,000,000 in 1900. This gave the State fifth rank in the amount and sixth rank in the value of the output. A large portion of the coal is used in the manufacture of coke, the State taking third rank in the production of that article. The growth of iron mining has been no less striking. In 1880 there were 171,000 long tons mined; in 1889, 1,570,000 tons; and in 1899, 2,662,000 tons, the value for the latter year being $2,600,000, and ranking the State next to Michigan and Minnesota in importance. Seventy-two per cent. of the product is red hematite and 28 per cent. brown hematite. Virginia alone produces a larger amount of the latter variety of ore. Limestone is quarried extensively, and most of it is burned into lime or used as a flux. The average annual value for the last decade was about $300,000. Bauxite is mined in Cherokee County, and graphite in Cleburne County. Building clays, sandstone, and mineral springs are each of some commercial value in the State.

Fisheries. Owing to the limited coast line of the State, its sea fisheries are of less importance than those of the other Gulf States. The industry gives employment to less than a thousand men, and the value of the product is only about $150,000.

Agriculture. Agriculture is the leading industry of the State, but it is not keeping pace with the other rapidly developing industries or with the increase of population. Agriculture received a decided setback from the Civil War, and has not yet completely adjusted itself to the new industrial régime. The acreage of farm land and the percentage of improved land (about 40 per cent.) are but little larger than they were in 1860, while the valuation of farm land and the amount and value of almost every kind of farm property and produce is less than it was in 1860. The old plantation system of large farms, whose cultivation was carried on under the direction of the owner, has given way to a system of small rented farms. The average size of farms, which was 347 acres, in 1860, has decreased about 60 per cent., and the rented farms constitute almost half of the entire number—both methods of renting, that for a fixed money payment and that fur a share of the product, being equally in vogue. The farm land is still held by a comparatively few individuals, a considerable proportion of whom are representative of the merchant class. The holdings are divided into convenient portions, and the negro renter receives a meagre supply of farm equipments, upon which, as also upon the prospective crop, the merchant holds a lien. The negro becomes the customer of the merchant and can seldom catch up with his obligations. The merchant finds his rent most certain and his sale of provisions greatest when the renter confines himself largely to the cultivation of cotton, which he willingly does, and thus cotton remains king. The continuous planting of this crop before the war, as well as since that time, has resulted in the exhaustion of a naturally fertile soil. While cotton is grown in most parts of the State, much the greater portion is raised in the “cotton belt,” a narrow strip of black prairie land extending east and west across the State in the latitude of Montgomery. Alabama usually ranks fourth in the value of her cotton product. Corn is next in importance, and its acreage is almost equal to that of cotton, but the product is of much less value. Oats are the only crop that has experienced a remarkable increase in cultivation—an increase about commensurate with the decrease in the cultivation of wheat, which has become relatively unimportant, though the past decade has witnessed a revival. These and small quantities of other cereals are grown most extensively in the “cereal belt,” or the valley of the Tennessee River in the northern part of the State. This valley is also very favorable for the raising of apples and other fruits, the mountains on either side giving protection from the heat of the south and the winds of the north. Peanuts are raised in the southeast. The State takes a high rank in the production of peaches as well as melons. Cowpease, sweet potatoes, and sugar cane are extensively grown throughout the State. Most of the sugar cane in recent years is manufactured into molasses. There is much barren waste land in the mountain regions of the north, while forests still cover the greater portion of the southern end of the State. Cotton being the predominant crop, the conditions are not favorable for the extensive raising of stock. Such as is raised goes to supply the local needs. The following tables indicates the trend of the agricultural industry:

  1900 1890

Horses. 133,500  121,200
Mules and Asses. 132,300  134,800
Working Oxen .... 97,000
Milch Cows. 231,800  292,000
Other Cattle. 279,000  486,500
Swine. 1,866,000  1,421,800
Sheep. 171,800  386,000
Corn (Bushels.)  29,300,000   30,000,000
Oats (Bushels.) 4,300,000  3,230,000
Wheat (Bushels.) 916,000  208,000
Cotton (Bales.) 1,061,000  915,000
Cane Molasses. (Gallons.) ? 2,300,000
Sorghum Molasses. (Gallons.)  ? 1,242,000
Hay. (Tons.) 94,000  54,000

There is to-day evidence of a growing sentiment in favor of diversified farming and an increasing tendency toward the raising of pease, alfalfa, and other leguminous plants which are of special value to the soil, and there is in general a more hopeful view of the agricultural future, and a belief that it is sharing in the general industrial awakening of the South.

Manufactures. Recent years have clearly demonstrated that Alabama possesses a combination of advantages for manufacturing enterprise such as are scarcely found in any other part of the country, and which promise to place her in the front rank of manufacturing States. The raw material and the auxiliary agencies of manufacture are found in close proximity. In the north iron ore is found in the same locality with coal, limestone, and dolomite, making possible a minimum cost of production for iron and its manufactures. The immense forests of the South supply material for the lumber industry, and the production of tar, turpentine, and resin. The numerous waterfalls and rapids in the State supply the needed power for turning the cotton crop into the manufactured product, though the abundance and cheapness of coal has much retarded the utilization of this power. With these advantages must also be considered the lesser cost of living in the South, thus making a lower wage possible. The comparative scarcity of strikes and the absence of labor legislation and prohibition of child labor in the State have served as an additional attraction for capital from the North. The greatest and almost the sole obstacle in the way of manufacturing, especially of iron products, has been the high railway freight rates, which make it difficult to compete with the products of the North. The improvement of the watercourse of the Warrior River, already partially executed, will reduce 80 per cent. the cost of conveying iron products to Mobile, which will result in a large increase of the exports of pig iron to foreign countries, already amounting in 1900 to 113,000 tons, and exceeding those from any other State. The following table for the eleven leading industries shows a remarkable development during the decade in nearly every industry. The iron and steel industry leads. Steel manufacture in Alabama is of recent origin. Alabama iron ores are not suited to the manufacture of steel by the Bessemer process, and it was not until the recently manifested preference for steel manufactured by the open hearth process that profitable manufacture of steel in Alabama was possible. Of the foundry and machine shop products, east iron pipe is the most important, the other leading products being stoves, car wheels, boilers, and engines. While the State was behind some of her sister States in developing cotton manufactures, the progress from 1890 to 1900, which was greater than that for any other industry, leaves no doubt of the future prominence of the State in the production of cotton goods. Fertilizers are produced by a process of combining Alabama cottonseed meal with phosphates from Florida mines. In the following table the comparisons of wage earners, while not exact, are reasonably indicative of the actual facts.


Industries.  Year.  Number of
Value of Products,
including Custom
 Work and Repairing. 

Total for selected industries for state 1900 3,335  37,347   $62,382,686
  1890 1,544  20,657  34,814,502

Increase, 1890 to 1900 ...... 1,791  16,690  27,568,184
Per cent. of increase ...... 116.0  80.8  79.2
Per cent. of total of all industries in state 1900 59.5  70.6  75.3
1890 51.9  66.3  68.0
Cars and general shop construction        
and repairs by steam railroad companies  1900 19  4,030  4,172,192
1890 12  1,373  1,581,207
Coke 1900 15  1,592  3,726,433
1890 19  1,120  2,474,377
Cotton, ginning[1] 1900 1,216  1,518  1,218,283
1890 212  792  213,529
Cotton goods 1900 31  8,332  8,153,136
1890 13  2,088  2,190,771
Fertilizers 1900 17  439  2,068,162
1890 230  765,000
Flouring and grist mill products 1900 781  540  3,310,757
1890 702  1,043  3,060,452
Foundry and machine shop products 1900 74  3,461  5,482,441
1890 41  1,460  2,196,913
Iron and steel 1900 25  7,238  17,392,483
1890 35  5,685  12,544,227
Leather, tanned, curried and finished  1900 18  165  1,005,358
1890 21  41  77,066
Lumber and timber products 1900 1,111  9,273  12,867,551
1890 472  6,335  8,507,971
Oil, cottonseed and cake 1900 28  759  2,985,890
1890 490  1,203,989

Transportation and Commerce. The Alabama and Tombigbee rivers, with their more important tributaries, and the Chattahoochee River on the east boundary, offer excellent facilities for navigation. Railroad construction was very slow in developing, but has made a steady increase in recent years, in marked contrast with most Northern States. The mileage in 1880 amounted to 1843 miles, but increased to 4226 in 1900, or more than half the mileage of the State of New York. There were 7.81 miles for every 100 square miles of territory, and 22.55 miles for every 10,000 inhabitants. Almost every trunk line of the South passes through Birmingham. There is a State Railroad Commission, which fixes rates, but railroads are not bound to adopt them. In case of damage suits, however, the rates fixed by the commission are prima facie reasonable. Mobile is the only seaport, and the chief exports are cotton, coal, and lumber. New Orleans takes the bulk of the cotton for export trade, and Pensaeola the lumber.

Banks. On October 31, 1900, there were forty-three national banks in the State, thirty of which were in operation. The capital stock amounted to $3,555,000; circulation outstanding, $1,968,000; deposits, $10,933,000; and reserve held, $3,104,000. On June 30, 1900, there were twenty State banks, having total resources aggregating $7,129,000; capital stock, $742,000, and deposits, $3,489,000.

Finance. In 1900 the finances of the State were in the best condition they have reached since the Civil War. The bonded debt of $9,357,000, created during the “carpet-bag” régime, constitutes the tax-payer's heaviest burden. Provisions have been made by law for the refunding of this debt, but none looking to its final extinction. According to the new constitution, new debts can be incurred only for purposes of repelling an invasion or suppressing an insurrection. The valuation of property in this State has increased steadily from $139,000,000 in 1880 to $226,000,000 in 1900. The general tax increased during the same period from $908,000 to $1,467,000. The general purpose tax rate for six years has been two and one-half mills, and for two years there has been a special soldier and special school tax rate of one mill each. The receipts for 1900 amounted to $2,656,000, this being an increase of about $400,000 over the average of previous years. The principal items of revenue are: General taxes, 50 per cent. of the entire revenue; licenses, about 9 per cent.; pension fund taxes, 10 per cent.; special school tax, 10 per cent.; hire of convicts, less than 5 per cent.; poll tax ($1 per poll, $150,000). As there are over 400,000 people subject to a poll tax in the State, it is evident that this tax is generally disregarded.

Education. Education in Alabama is in a very unsatisfactory but hopeful condition. The percentage of her illiteracy is exceeded in but three other States. There are great difficulties in the way of maintaining satisfactory educational standards, such difficulties as are incident to the breakdown of an industrial system and the presence of a large ex-slave class. The schools have lacked financial support, partially through the fault of the law, for there has been no provision for local taxation for educational purposes. The new constitution, however, provides for county school taxes. Many of the teachers lack proper qualifications (especially the colored teachers), the schools are not graded, and heretofore have been very inadequately supervised. The length of the school term is commonly less than ninety days per year; but in the white schools the teachers are often retained for longer terms, at the expense of the parents of the school children. Of late, however, public interest in the matter has been aroused. Laws now make it possible to secure better qualified teachers and provide a better financial support. The school appropriation, which for a long time had amounted annually to about $650,000, was increased in 1900 to $1,000,000; but even this makes the sum for each child of school age only about $1.50. The white children of school age numbered 350,000 in 1900; the black children, 282,000. In 1899 the enrollment of white children amounted to 196,000; of blacks, 122,000. Thirteen hundred children were enrolled in public high schools, and a somewhat less number in private secondary schools. The State supports, together with the aid of the Peabody Fund, seven normal schools, three of which are for colored students. A district system of agricultural schools has been established by the State, there being nine such district schools. The State also supports an agricultural and mechanical college (colored), four normal schools, a Polytechnic Institute at Auburn, a girls' industrial school (white) at Montevallo, and a university at Tuscaloosa. Private institutions of learning are as follows: Blount College, Blountsville; St. Bernard College, Cullman; Howard College, East Lake; Southern University, Greensboro; Lafayette College, Lafayette; Lineville College, Lineville; Selma University, Selma; Spring Hill College, Spring Hill, and eight colleges for women. The Industrial Institute (colored) at Tuskegee (q.v.) has become famous under the administration of Booker T. Washington for the efficient way in which it is helping to solve the race question.

Charity and Penal. The State institutions comprise the Alabama Institution for the Deaf, the Alabama School for Negro Deaf Mutes and Blind, and the Alabama Academy for the Blind, all at Talladega; a hospital for the insane, at Tuscaloosa; a penitentiary, at Wetumpka, and two prisons at Pratt Mines. The State owns a cotton farm and cotton mills, where labor is performed by boys and women convicted of offenses by the courts. The convict system has undergone radical improvements, but prisoners are still leased to contractors for various kinds of work. In 1898 the convicts numbered 1763.

Religion. As in other portions of the South, the Baptists and the Methodists have the field almost to themselves. The other denominations, of which the strongest are the Presbyterian, Catholic, Christian, and Episcopalian, are small in numbers.

Population. The population of the State by decades was as follows: 1820, 127,901; 1830, 309,527; 1840, 590,756; 1850, 771,623; 1860, 964,201; 1870, 996,992; 1880, 1,262,505; 1890, 1,513,017; 1900, 1,828,697. Her rank rose from nineteenth in 1820 to twelfth in 1840; since 1800 it has been gradually falling back, being eighteenth in 1900. The population increased 20.9 per cent. for the last decade, or at a ratio almost identical with that of the nation. The number of inhabitants per square mile in 1900 was 35.5, as against 25.6 for the whole country. In common with the other Southern States, the population is almost entirely native born, the foreign born never having exceeded 15,000 for the whole State. The negroes in 1900 numbered 827,000, but three other States containing a larger number. They are centred largely in the cotton belt, where in certain counties they outnumber the whites five to one, while this ratio is just reversed in a number of counties north and south of this belt. Owing to the relative importance of agriculture, the population is largely rural, but 10 per cent. of the total living in cities of 4000 population and over in 1900. With the development of mining and manufacturing the urban element has rapidly increased, the number of places containing a population of more than 4000 having risen from ten in 1890 to sixteen in 1900. While the negroes engage but little in these occupations, they yet show a strong inclination to gravitate to the urban centres. For the population of the State by counties, see back of map.

Cities. The census of 1900 gives the following figures for the population of the largest cities: Mobile. 38,469; Birmingham, 38,415, and Montgomery, 30,346.

Government. The present Constitution was adopted by a vote of the people in November, 1901. The right of suffrage is restricted to those who have resided two years in the State, one year in the county, and three months in the precinct or ward, and have paid the required poll tax and registered. In order to register prior to December 20, 1902, the applicant must have engaged in, or been a descendant of, one who has participated in one of the following events: the War of 1812, the Mexican War, any war with the Indians, the war between the States, the war with Spain, or served with the forces of the Confederate States or of the State of Alabama in the war between the States; and he must be an individual of good character, and who understands the duties and obligations of citizenship under a republican form of government. After January 1, 1903, the qualifications for citizenship are to be modified, and from that date the ability to read and write any clause of the United States Constitution in English, and the pursuit of some lawful calling for the greater part of the twelve months preceding the time of registration, will be prerequisites for voting. These qualifications are not required of those who own, individually or through their wives, a certain amount of property free from tax incumbrances. Any person guilty of a criminal offense, including the selling, buying, or offering to sell or buy, a vote, is debarred from voting. The constitution contains a detailed statement of the proper procedure in registration, of penalties, etc. Each county is to have a board of registrars, consisting of three members, who issue life certificates to those who are entitled to them. An amendment to the constitution may be secured by a three-fifths vote of each house, ratified by a vote of the people. A constitutional convention may be called when voted by a majority of each house, and ratified by the people, and the power of such convention in altering, revising, or amending the constitution is subject to no restrictions.

Legislative.—The legislative body consists of a Senate and a House of Representatives, the maximum limit of membership being 35 and 105 respectively. The number of senators must not be more than one-third nor less than one-fourth that of representatives. Senatorial districts are composed of contiguous undivided counties. Elections are held the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of every fourth year, and the legislature meets on the second Tuesday in the following January, the session being limited to fifty days. Members are paid $4 per day and traveling expenses. Revenue bills originate in the House, and cannot be passed in the last five days of the session. The legislature must provide for the revision of the statutes every twelfth year. One of the numerous legislative prohibitions prevents the State from engaging in or aiding in internal improvements.

Executive.—A governor, lieutenant-governor, attorney-general. State auditor, secretary of State, State treasurer, superintendent of education, and commissioner of agriculture and industries are elected every fourth year, at the time and place appointed for the election of members of the legislature. None of these officers is eligible for reëlection, and the governor is not eligible to election or appointment to any office in the State, or to the Senate of the United States, during his term or within one year after the expiration thereof. The lieutenant-governor is ex-officio president of the Senate, and succeeds to the office of governor in case that office becomes vacant. The attorney-general, Secretary of State, and State auditor constitute a board of pardons, to hear petitions for pardons, commutation, or parole in cases of felony, and advise the governor thereon; but the decision of the governor does not need to conform with that of the board. The governor may veto any bill, or any item of an appropriation bill; but a majority vote of each house may override the veto of the governor. A bill becomes law if the governor fails to pass upon it within one week after it has been submitted to him.

Judiciary.—The judicial power of the State is vested in the Senate, sitting as a court of impeachment, a supreme court, circuit courts, chancery courts, courts of probate, such courts of law and equity inferior to the supreme court, consisting of not more than five members, as the legislature from time to time may establish, and such persons as may be by law invested with powers of a judicial nature. A circuit court, or a court having the jurisdiction of a circuit court, is held in each county of the State at least twice every year. The State is divided into chancery divisions, with a chancellor for each division. The divisions are subdivided into districts, in each of which the chancellor holds court at least twice each year. The legislature may establish courts of probate in each county. Judges of the supreme, circuit, chancery, and probate courts are elected for a term of six years. For each judicial circuit a solicitor (prosecutor) is elected for a term of four years. Each precinct has two justices of the peace and one constable, excepting precincts lying within towns of over 1500 inhabitants, in which precincts the legislature may establish inferior courts in lieu of the justices of the peace.

Local Government.—Both county and municipal corporations are limited in their taxing and debt incurring powers. Each county elects a sheriff, who serves for a term of four years, but he cannot be reëlected. One year's residence is necessary to secure a divorce, the principal causes for which are desertion (two years) and habitual drunkenness.

The State has nine representatives in the national House of Representatives. Montgomery is the capital.

Militia.—The authorized National Guard of Alabama numbers 7788, while the organized body consists of 2471 men. The census of 1900 found 328,000 males of militia age, of whom 165,000 are liable to military duty. The National Guard is formed into one brigade, and consists of three regiments of infantry, of twelve companies each; one battalion of artillery, composed of three batteries; one squadron of cavalry, composed of four troops.

History. In 1540 De Soto passed through the territory now included in Alabama, and found it occupied by powerful Indian nations. Among them were the Alibamas, who gave their name to the country; the Chickasaws, the Choctaws, and the Creeks, together constituting the Muskhogean family; the Cherokees and Apalaches. Alabama was included under Carolina in the royal grants made by the Stuarts in 1629 and 1663, but no attempts at settlement were made by the English. In 1702, the French, under Bienville, removed from Biloxi Bay, where a fort had been built some years previous, and erected Fort St. Louis, on Mobile Bay. Mobile was founded in 1711, and until 1726 was the capital of Louisiana. In 1714 Fort Toulouse was built at the junction of the Coosa and Tallapoosa. The growth of the colony was hindered by disease and poverty; the Chickasaws remained hostile, and the English planted their trading posts in the wilderness north of Mobile. When France ceded her possessions east of the Mississippi to England, in 1763, Alabama, north of 32° 40′, was added to the Illinois territory, and the part south of the line to West Florida. During the Revolution, West Florida, which had by that time gained English and Scotch settlers, remained loyal, and in 1779-80 Spain took advantage of her own war with Great Britain to seize the province. After 1783, the United States, as the successor of England, claimed as far south as the thirty-first degree, but Spain continued to hold the territory south of 32° 40′ till 1798. Georgia claimed between 31° and 35° to the Mississippi, but sold her rights in 1802. In 1798 Congress organized the region included between the Mississippi River on the west, the Chattahoochee on the east, the 31st parallel on the south, and a line drawn from the mouth of the Yazoo into Mississippi Territory, and in 1804 extended its northern boundary to Tennessee; in April, 1813, the Mobile district was taken from the Spanish by the United States and annexed to Mississippi territory.

Incited by the British, the Creeks and their allied tribes rose in 1812 against the whites, their atrocities culminating in the great massacre at Fort Mimms, on the Alabama River, August 30, 1813. General Jackson headed the forces sent against the Indians, and by his victories at Talladega and the Horse Shoe Bend of the Tallapoosa, 1813-14, forced them to surrender their territory west of the Coosa and south of Wetumpka. In a number of subsequent treaties the Indians gradually abandoned the larger portion of their land, until, between 1830 and 1836, they were removed in a body west of the Mississippi River. ( See Creeks.) Mississippi was set off March 1, 1817, and on March 3 was formed the territory of Alabama, with its seat at St. Stephens. The first legislature met at Huntsville, January 19, 1818, and the State was admitted to the Union December 14, 1819. In 1820 the seat of government was removed to Cahaba, in 1826 to Tuscaloosa, and in 1847 to Montgomery. The people of Alabama were aggressive champions of territorial expansion for slavery purposes, and took a prominent part in the Mexican War. They entered very zealously into the secession movement, and early in December, 1860, urged the Southern States to withdraw from the Union. At Montgomery, on January 11, 1861, an ordinance of secession was passed by a vote of 61 to 39—the minority representing the northern part of the State, where the Whig party had been especially strong. Forts Gaines and Morgan, at the entrance to Mobile Bay, were seized, and on January 21 the senators and representatives withdrew from Congress. Delegates from the seceded States met at Montgomery, February 4, and organized the Confederate Government. A Confederate arsenal, foundry, and navy yard were soon established at Selma. In February and April of 1862 Federal troops occupied the Tennessee Valley. In August, 1864, Farragut destroyed a Confederate fleet in Mobile Bay, and, aided by General Granger with a land force, reduced Forts Gaines and Morgan. In April, 1865, the Union forces took Selma, Tuscaloosa, Montgomery, and Mobile. A provisional government was established June 21, 1865, and a convention repealed the act of secession and altered the constitution. State officers and members of Congress were chosen; but Congress, in conflict with President Johnson, refused admission to the representatives from Alabama. By the reconstruction act of March 2, 1867, Alabama was included with Georgia and Florida in the third military district, under General Pope. In November a new constitution was framed, which received, February, 1868, 70,182 votes out of 71,817 cast, and though the majority of registered voters had remained away from the polls, Congress declared the constitution operative, and it continued in force till 1875, when a new constitution was adopted. On July 14, 1868, military rule ceased, and on November 16, 1870, the State ratified the fifteenth amendment to the Federal constitution. For a decade after the Civil War, Alabama suffered from maladministration. Party spirit ran very high, and elections were bitterly contested. The dishonesty of officials and the extravagant railway policy they pursued brought the State and the chief towns into serious financial difficulties. With the reorganization of the public debt in 1876 began an era of quiet and prosperity. Cotton and steel manufactures and the mining industries thrived enormously, and many large towns sprang up in the northern part of the State. Lumbering, too, became of great importance. The agricultural interests, by comparison, showed little growth. Educational progress did not keep up with economic development until the end of the nineteenth century. Since 1874 Alabama has been invariably Democratic. In 1901 a constitutional convention was busy with the problem of changing the organic law in such a manner as to insure political supremacy to the white population.

The following is a list of the governors of the State, and the parties to which they belonged:

William W. Bibb 1817-19
W. W. Bibb Democrat 1819-20
Thomas Bibb 1820-21
Israel Pickens 1821-25
John Murphy 1825-29
Gabriel Moore 1829-31
Samuel B. Moore 1831
John Gayle 1831-35
Clement C. Clay 1835-37
Hugh McVay 1837
Arthur P. Bagby 1837-41
Benjamin Fitzpatrick 1841-45
Joshua L. Martin 1845-47
Reuben Chapman 1847-49
Henry W. Collier 1849-53
John A. Winston 1853-57
Andrew B. Moore 1857-61
John G. Shorter 1861-63
Thomas H. Watts 1863-65
Lewis E. Parsons Provisional 1865
Robert M. Patton Republican 1865-67
Wager Swayne  (military governor)  1867-68
William H. Smith Republican 1868-70
Robert B. Lindsay Democrat 1870-72
David P. Lewis Republican 1872-74
George S. Houston Democrat 1874-78
Rufus W. Cobb 1878-82
Edward O'Neal 1882-86
Thomas Seay 1886-90
Thomas G. Jones 1890-94
William C. Oates 1894-96
Joseph F. Johnston 1896-1900
William J. Sanford 1900

Bibliography. Brown, School History of Alabama (1900); Phillips, Iron Making in Alabama (Montgomery, Ala., 1896; second edition. 1898); Owen, Bibliography of Alabama, in 1898 Annual Report of American Historical Association (Washington, 1897); Clark, History of Education in Alabama, 1702-1899 (Washington, 1889); Hillyard, The New South (Baltimore, 1887); Brewer, Alabama (Montgomery, 1872).

  1. Does not include many ginneries operated in connection with saw, grist, and cottonseed oil mills, or for the use exclusively of plantations on which they are located.