Historic Markers Across Alabama

Old Columbia Jail / Columbia

Marker ID: HCC 
Location: at the Jail, 200 South Main Street, Columbia, Alabama.
County: Houston
Coordinates: N 31° 17.495    W 085° 6.737
  31.29158333    -85.11228333
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMKMHV


Erected sometime in the early 1860's, the Old Columbia Jail is today one of the last wooden jails still standing in Alabama. Originally, there were two cells, each measuring 10 x 15 feet. Interior walls are studded every two inches with iron spikes to prevent prisoners from being able to escape. The Columbia Women's Club and the Columbia Bicentennial Committee have completely renovated the building as a museum to preserve some of the articles of historical interest to Columbia citizens.

Formerly a prominent Chattahoochee River port-of-call, Columbia served as a major trading center for communities throughout the Wiregrass area of Alabama. Between 1822-1833, it was the county seat for Henry County which then comprised portions of present day Covington, Dale, Barbour, Coffee, Crenshaw, Bullock, Geneva and Houston Counties. At the turn of the century, Columbia was bypassed by the Alabama Midland Railway in favor of Dothan. As the railroads continued to take freight trade away from the riverboats, Columbia's position as a principal trade center began to decline.

Erected by the Historic Chattahoochee Commission, 1978.


Marker Dedication or Erection Date: September 10, 1978

End of Old Columbia Jail / Columbia