From the very beginning, Alabama has played an integral part in the growth and development of America. Below, you’ll find 20 unique facts about the state of Alabama.
1 The state of Alabama received its name from a tribe of Native Americans who resided in the central portion of the state. There are many names for this tribe, such as “Alibamo,” “Alibamu,” and “Alabamon.”
2 While Alabama was the fourth state to secede from the Union in 1861, a telegram sent from Montgomery instructing Confederate soldiers to attack Fort Sumter actually set the Civil War in motion.
3 Rosa Parks’ refusal to move to the back of a Montgomery bus proved to be one of the most influential moments in the American Civil Rights movement.
4 Harper Lee, famed author of To Kill a Mockingbird, used to watch her father practice law in the Monroeville, Alabama courthouse. Today, the courthouse has been refurbished into a museum.
5 Famous scientist Wernher von Braun designed and built spacecraft for NASA in Huntsville, Alabama during the 1950s.
6 A resident of Haleyville, Alabama made the country's very first 911 call in 1968.
7 Alabama was the first state in the nation to make Christmas an official holiday in 1863. The rest of the country didn’t follow suit until 1870.
8 The first Mardi Gras in America was not held in New Orleans, but rather in Mobile, Alabama in 1702.
9 Alabama is the country’s largest producer of cast iron.
10 Alabama is home to the largest cast iron statue, known as the Vulcan and located in Birmingham.
11 Alabama’s state flower is the camellia and its state bird is the northern flicker.
12 Famous Alabama natives include Helen Keller, John Lewis, Zora Neale Hurston, Nat King Cole, Mia Hamm, Harper Lee, and Emmylou Harris.
13 Alabama’s state constitution is over 300,000 words and has 775 amendments. This makes it the longest state constitution in the world.
14 In Magnolia Springs, Alabama, mail is delivered by boat. It is the only solely water mail route in the country.
15 Until the early 19th century, many parts of Alabama had wooden roads.
16 On December 14, 1819, Alabama became the 22nd state in the United States. Its motto is “We dare defend our rights.”
17 The first use of the confederate flag was in 1861 at the inauguration of Jefferson Davis as president of the confederacy. This inauguration took place in Montgomery, Alabama.
18 Alabama is the only state to have an alcoholic beverage as its official state drink, Conecuh Ridge Whiskey.
19 Montgomery, Alabama was home to the first electric streetcar system in 1886.
20 Alabama’s economy is primarily made up of the manufacturing, agriculture, automotive, and chemical industries.