Portal:Alabama

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The Alabama Portal

Flag of Alabama
Alabama's location within the United States

Alabama (formally, the State of Alabama; About this sound /ˌæləˈbæmə/ ) is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. It became the 22nd state to enter the Union in 1819 and was the fifth state to secede in 1861 to form the Confederate States of America. Its capital, Montgomery, served briefly as the capitol of the Confederate States. Alabama is bordered by Tennessee to the north, Georgia to the east, Florida and the Gulf of Mexico to the south, and Mississippi to the west. Alabama ranks 30th in total land area and ranks second in the size of its inland waterways. The state ranks 23rd in population with almost 4.6 million residents in 2006.

From the American Civil War until World War II, Alabama, like many Southern states, suffered economic hardship, in part because of continued dependence on agriculture. White rural interests dominated the state legislature until the 1960s, while urban interests and African Americans were underrepresented. In the years following World War II, Alabama experienced significant recovery as the economy of the state transitioned from agriculture to diversified interests in heavy manufacturing, mineral extraction, education, and high technology, as well as the establishment or expansion of multiple military installations, primarily those of the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force. Today, the state is heavily invested in aerospace, education, health care, banking, and various heavy industries including automobile manufacturing, mineral extraction, steel production and fabrication.

Alabama is unofficially nicknamed the Yellowhammer State, which is the name of the state bird. Alabama is also known as the "Heart of Dixie". The state tree is the Longleaf Pine, and the state flower is the Camellia. The capital of Alabama is Montgomery, and the largest city by population is Birmingham. The largest city by total land area is Huntsville. The oldest city is Mobile.

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1922 Advertisement for Grapico Bottling Works
Grapico is a caffeine free, artificially flavored carbonated soft drink with a purple color and a grape taste that is sold in the Southeastern United States. When introduced in 1917, the product quickly became a success, which in part was due to implying that Grapico contained real grape juice even though it did not. In the spring of 1926, J. Grossman's Sons sold the Grapico business to New Orleans business Pan American Manufacturing Co. Pan American continued J. Grossman's Sons' improper practice of implying that Grapico contained real grape juice and lost the right to use the word "Grapico" to designate their artificial grape drink in 1929.

Although the J. Grossman's Sons line of the brand had ended, the Grapico brand continued on through Alabama businessman R. R. Rochell and his Birmingham, Alabama based Grapico Bottling Works. R. R. Rochell had first become a wholesale syrup customer of J. Grossman's Sons in the Summer of 1917 to serve the Alabama soft drink market. By the time Pan American had lost their artificial grape drink name in 1929, Rochell was selling bottled Grapico in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Rochell received the federal trademark on Grapico in 1940, giving his Grapico Company of America the right to use the name "Grapico" everywhere in the United States. Grapico is presently produced at a bottling facility in Columbus, Georgia ownder and operated by Buffalo Rock, an independent Pepsi bottler based in Birmingham, Alabama.

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The First White House of the Confederacy
Credit: Nils Fretwurst

The First White House of the Confederacy was the executive residence of President Jefferson Davis and his family while the capital of the Confederate States of America was in Montgomery, Alabama. Completely furnished with original period pieces from the 1850s and 1860s, the 1835 Italianate-style house is open to the public. It has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1974.

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Rosa Parks in 1955, with Martin Luther King, Jr. in the background.
Rosa Louise McCauley Parks (February 4, 1913 – October 24, 2005) was an African American civil rights activist whom the U.S. Congress called the "Mother of the Modern-Day Civil Rights Movement." On December 1, 1955 in Montgomery, Alabama, Parks, age 42, refused to obey bus driver James Blake's order that she give up her seat to make room for a white passenger. Unlike previous individual action of civil disobedience, such as 15-year-old Claudette Colvin's refusal to move from her seat on the same bus system, Parks's action sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott.

Parks's act of defiance became an important symbol of the modern Civil Rights Movement and Parks became an international icon of resistance to racial segregation. She organized and collaborated with civil rights leaders, including boycott leader Martin Luther King, Jr., helping to launch him to national prominence in the civil rights movement. Parks eventually received many honors ranging from the 1979 Spingarn Medal to the Congressional Gold Medal, a posthumous statue in the United States Capitol's National Statuary Hall, and the posthumous honor of lying in honor at the Capitol Rotunda.

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Mobile Public Library in Mobile, Alabama

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Big Spring Park in Huntsville, Alabama
Credit: Larry Wilbourn

Big Spring International Park is located in downtown Huntsville, Alabama. It is most noted as being the site of the Panoply Arts Festival, held the last full weekend in April, and Big Spring Jam, an annual music festival that usually occurs on the fourth weekend in September.

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2005 Sugar BowlAlabama Crimson Tide football seasonsBirmingham campaignBobby EatonHurricane Danny (1997)List of counties in AlabamaList of Governors of AlabamaList of National Historic Landmarks in AlabamaList of tallest buildings in MobileNatalee HollowayOzzie SmithRosa ParksTo Kill a MockingbirdTropical Storm Bill (2003)UAB Blazers football seasonsZelda Fitzgerald

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2008 Super Tuesday tornado outbreakAcer rubrumAgudath Israel Etz AhayemApril 6–8, 2006 Tornado OutbreakAuburn High School (Alabama)Birmingham AmericansBob HollyBrodie CroyleCaptain MunnerlynCharles BarkleyCharlie FonvilleDebra MarshallDan PovenmireFebruary-March 2007 Tornado OutbreakGrapicoGreat Storm of 1975Hurricane CarmenHurricane EloiseHurricane Florence (1988)Hurricane IsidoreHurricane IvanInterstate 359John Mitchell (American football coach)Mark MatthewsMobile, AlabamaRichard M. ScrushyShenandoah (band)Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad CompanyTropical Storm Arlene (2005)Tropical Storm Beryl (1988)Tropical Storm Matthew (2004)Utricularia inflataWilliam Lowndes Yancey

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