Historic Markers Across Alabama

Oldest House In Shades Valley Cummings - Eastis - Beaumont House / Irondale Furnace Commissary

Marker ID:  
Location: on Montevallo Road west of Glenbrook Drive, Birmingham, Alabama
County: Jefferson
Coordinates: N 33° 30.582    W 086° 44.208
  33.5097    -86.7368
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMCZBM


Morris Avenue Historic District

Created 1972 by the Jefferson County Historical Commission, the district is based on this avenue. Morris Avenue was named for one of the founders of Birmingham, Josiah Morris, who paid $100,000 for 4,157 acres of the original site of the city in 1870. At the suggestion of Mr. Morris the city was named for England's industrial district. This avenue was the principal wholesale trade district of the city and enjoyed it's greatest popularity from 1880 to 1900. Some of the city's most prominent families owned business firms here.

This Historic District is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Elyton Land Company
(Successor, Birmingham Realty Co.)c

Birmingham was founded in 1871 by the Elyton Land Company whose offices were located on Morris Avenue and Twentieth Street.

The company was composed principally of Montgomery citizens, James R. Powell was the first president and Captain William P. Barker was chief engineer and surveyor. Due to his foresight Birmingham was designed with broad streets and avenues. Dr. Henry M. Caldwell was the second president of the company and Willis J. Milner was Secretary.

Elyton Land Company office also housed the water works and Highland Avenue Belt Railroad offices.

Oldest House In Shades Valley
Cummings - Eastis - Beaumont House

The original log structure was built c. 1820 - 1830, with the board and batten addition dating to as late as the 1860s. The log cabin was at first one and one-half stories and is believed to be the oldest structure in Shades Valley. Members of the Eastis family lived here for over eighty years until it was purchased by the Edward Beaumonts in 1951.

Irondale Furnace Commissary

The log house, purchased from William Cummings in 1863 by Wallace S. McElwain, owner of the nearby Cahaba Iron Works or Irondale Furnace, was used for a commissary or company store. This was the first store in Shades Valley for the settlers to purchase supplies. Before this, it was necessary for them to make a long trip over Red Mountain to Elyton, then the county seat. Although the furnace was destroyed March 29, 1865 by Wilson's Raiders, the commissary was spared.

Erected by the Birmingham - Jefferson County Historical Commission 1993

End of Oldest House In Shades Valley Cummings - Eastis - Beaumont House / Irondale Furnace Commissary