Spanish explorers are believed to have arrived at Mobile Bay in 1519, and the territory was visited in 1540 by the explorer Hernando de Soto. The French founded the first permanent European settlement in Alabama at Fort Louis de la Mobile in 1702. The British gained control of the area in 1763 by the Treaty of Paris but had to cede almost all the Alabama region to the U.S. and Spain after the American Revolution. The Confederacy was founded at Montgomery in Feb. 1861, and, for a time, the city was the Confederate capital.
Points of interest include the Helen Keller birthplace at Tuscumbia, the Space and Rocket Center at Huntsville, the White House of the Confederacy, the restored state Capitol, the Civil Rights Memorial, the Rosa Parks Museum & Library, and the Shakespeare Festival Theater Complex in Montgomery; the Civil Rights Institute and the McWane Center in Birmingham; the Russell Cave near Bridgeport; the Bellingrath Gardens at Theodore; the USS Alabama at Mobile; Mound State Monument near Tuscaloosa; and the Gulf Coast area.
The Alabama flag features a crimson St. Andrew’s cross on a white field, patterned after the Confederate Battle Flag and adopted in 1895. The bars forming the cross must not be less than six inches broad and must extend diagonally across the flag from side to side.
The current Seal (1939) is based on the state’s first seal, designed in 1817. It prominently features a map showing one of the state’s most valuable resources—its major rivers. The use of stars in the border, the specific design of the letterforms and the map image, the labeling of adjacent states and the Gulf of Mexico, and the application of colors to the seal are not described in the law.
Enjoy your visit to the Yellowhammer State
Kathy R. Weiser-Alexander
Owner/Editor, Legends of America