The state of Alabama is located in the southern part of the United State and is fondly called the ‘Yellowhammer State’. When you’re in this part of the world, you’re sure to find some great delights. Among them are sweet tea, football, and the heartwarming Southern hospitality.
This beautiful state is named after the Alabama River. The name ‘Alabama’ comes from two words of the native Choctaw people – Alba and Amo. The Choctaw word ‘Alba’ means ‘plants’ or ‘vegetation’ and ‘Amo’ means ‘ picker’ or ‘gatherer’. These two words aptly describe the native Alabama Indians, as clearing and farming the land was what they did back in the day.
The climate of Alabama is characterized by mild winters and hot summers with a lot of precipitation. The southern portion of the state enjoys up to 300 days of the growing season as a result of its annual rainfall, which amounts to 1,400 mm. You can head south for warmer temperatures, but if you wish to stay cool, make a trip to the state’s northern parts.
Culture of Alabama
You’ll find a lot of folklore and music in this American state, thanks to its rich cultural traditions. The rural life of Alabama has influenced many of the nation’s popular music genres, such as country music and jazz. The state has also made significant contributions to the world of literature. Among the prominent figures from Alabama who made it big in the literary world was Harper Lee. I mean, who can forget her classic novel To Kill a Mockingbird?
As you begin exploring Alabama, you’ll come across many wonderful art museums. Some of the major ones will be found in the cities of Birmingham, Huntsville, Montgomery and Mobile. Besides the museums, there are many historic places worth exploring in the state! Such as the Confederate fortress called Fort Morgan. If you’re a history buff, you’ll certainly feel delighted to visit these places.
The people of Alabama have done well to leave the dark days of the Civil War behind and embrace various other cultures. It is more apparent in the annual international festival of Birmingham. The people of Alabama also enjoy some exciting recreational activities like stock-car racing, boating, and waterskiing.
History of Alabama
Alabama was inhabited by indigenous people from many different cultures before the colonial rule was established. They had been living in the region for many years and had trade relations with the north-eastern tribes. Some of them residing in present-day Alabama include the Cherokee, Muskogean, Choctaw, and Koasati people.
The first Europeans to reach Alabama during the 16th century were the Spanish. However, the French were the first Europeans to settle in the state. Later, it came under the occupation of British West Florida between 1763 and 1783. It was briefly occupied by Spain until the U.S. forces took control over the territory in 1813.
After the American Civil War, the industrial development in the World War era made Alabama quite prosperous. The racial segregation that had plagued the state since the colonial rule came to an end in the mid-1960s. The traditional lumber, textile, and steel industries made way to industries associated with manufacturing and technology. Today, finance, aerospace, mineral extraction, education, healthcare, and retail also contributes greatly to the state’s economy.
Best places to visit in Alabama
You’ll have a variety of places to explore in Alabama, as it houses tourist attractions for all ages. There are museums for history buffs, lovely beaches for the beach bums, and some recreational centers for families.
There are some great casinos as well. Although you can have sizable free bonuses only in online casinos, you’ll certainly have a good time trying your luck on the machines and gambling tables.
Here are some of the popular attractions you can visit while getting around in Alabama:
Memorials of Montgomery: There are two intriguing memorials you can explore upon visiting the city of Montgomery. One is the Civil Rights Memorial, which is located close to the Civil Rights Memorial Center. It features a black granite sculpture, built in the memory of those who were killed during the Civil Rights Movement.
Another memorial is the National Memorial of Peace and Justice. It includes sculptures, artwork, and monuments honoring prominent people of the Civil Rights Movement.
McWane Science Center: This family-friendly attraction houses several exhibits and interactive experiences for kids as well as adults. It has soared in popularity over the years owing to its range of offerings, which include an aquarium and an IMAX theater.
Mobile Bay: A scenic area adorning the state’s coastline, Mobile Bay has some fabulous beaches and historic places. They attract both tourists and locals every year. You’ll have a good time exploring Dauphin Island, which is a barrier island having a small town. If you wish to indulge in some recreational activities like playing golf and cycling, head to Fairhope Pier.
Gulf State Park: If you love camping and day-trips, Gulf State Park is the one you must explore. It has many facilities and over two miles of white-sand beaches. The amenities offered in this vacation spot attracts quite a lot of families every year. You’ll also be delighted to find guided Segway tours and paddle-board and kayak rentals while in this park.
Other interesting facts about Alabama
The ghost town: What was Alabama’s first permanent state capital in the early 19th century is now a ghost town. Cahaba was chosen as the site for the state’s capital in 1818 and became functional by 1820. However, the capital had to be relocated from there after five years owing to frequent floods.
World’s largest cast iron statue: Did you know that the statue of Vulcan in Alabama is the world’s largest cast iron statue? This statue of the Roman god of fire and forge is located in the city of Birmingham. It was built in the beginning of the 20th century and had won the ‘Grand Prize’ at the 1904 World’s Fair.
Hodges meteorite: On the 30th of November 1954, Alabama’s Ann Elizabeth Fowler Hodges was struck by the Sylacauga meteorite while she was napping on the couch. This incident received so much attention that the meteorite came to be known as the Hodges meteorite.
Coon Dog Cemetery: Located in the Colbert County of Alabama, the Key Underwood Coon Dog Memorial Graveyard is a cemetery reserved particularly for the burial of the ‘coonhound’ dog breed. The place was a popular hunting camp until Key Underwood established this cemetery in 1937.