Historic Markers Across Alabama

Monroeville, Alabama

Marker ID: ABT 
Location: at the intersection of South Alabama Avenue (State Highway 21) and West Claiborne Street, Monroeville, Alabama
County: Monroe
Coordinates: N 31° 31.591    W 087° 19.438
  31.52651666    -87.32396666
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: None


Side 1:
"Monroeville, Alabama: From one store in 1822 to Alabama's Literary Capital in 2008"

Originally a part of the Mississippi Territory purchased from Spain in 1795, this area was inhabited and controlled by Indian Nations until 1814. Now safe from Indian uprisings, settlers migrated down the Old Federal Road as far as Burnt Corn and thence westward across the Old Stage Road that traversed through Monroeville and connected with Claiborne, while others came up from Mobile on the Alabama River. First known as The Crossroads, then Walkers Mill and Store, and Centerville until the county seat was moved from Claiborne in 1832, the founding of Monroeville can be traced to an 80-acre land purchase by Monroe County in July, 1831. The present three-acre public square is a part of the original 80-acre land purchase. Early economic survival was dependent on the more than 400 small farms throughout the county. The economic turning point for area farmers came with the opening of the town's first bank, The First National Bank, in 1904.

Side 2:
Monroeville industry got its start when Vanity Fair Mills opened its first sewing plant in 1937 on Alabama Avenue. Originally employing 300, mostly women, the plant grew to become the Southern Corporate Headquarters and at its peak, in 1995, employing 2,500. Vanity Fair contributed considerable infrastructure to the City, including Whitey Lee Park, its five acre lake and the Monroeville Community House, etc. Additional industries followed Vanity Fair's lead in choosing the Monroeville area, including the establishment in 1978 of Alabama River Pulp Company at Claiborne, and other wood and wood products companies. Famous Monroeville residents include Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Nelle Harper Lee, author of the internationally acclaimed novel, "To Kill A Mockingbird", set in the 1930's small town of Maycomb, Alabama and Lee's childhood playmate, the late Truman Capote. In 1991, the Monroe County Heritage Museums staged its first production of "To Kill A Mockingbird". The production is an annual spring event by The Mockingbird Players, an all-volunteer cast. .In 1997, Monroeville was officially designated "The Literary Capital of Alabama."

Erected 2010 by Alabama Tourism Department and the City of Monroeville.

End of Monroeville, Alabama