Historic Markers Across Alabama

Alexander City: A Textile Community

Marker ID: ABT 
Location: on Main Street, Alexander City, AL
County: Tallapoosa
Coordinates: N 32° 56.597    W 085° 57.213
  32.94328333    -85.95355
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMHXKV


Side 1:
Youngsville, Alabama was incorporated in 1872. The name was changed to Alexander City in March 1873. In 1892, when cotton was king, farmers and planters in the Alexander City area were producing an estimated 18,000 bales of cotton a year. Community leaders sought to broaden the "Market City" by seeking a cotton mill as its first major manufacturing plant. The Alexander City Cotton Mill, built in 1901, was purchased in 1919 by the Braxton Bragg Comer Family. The Avondale "Bevelle" plant soon employed 350 men and women who produced yarn and woven ticking. The plant quickly expanded. Also, by 1902, Mr. Benjamin Russell established a knitting and sewing mill with 12 employees which evolved into Russell Corporation. The first products were ladies' and children's knitted under garments. Russell Mills' rapid expansion proved that cotton manufacturing was the right choice for the community.

Side 2:
Education and religion were deemed important by both the Comer and Russell families. Subsequently, they built churches and schools and recruited qualified teachers and ministers which resulted in continuous growth of their mills, the mill villages, and the community. Both employers treated their mill workers and children with great regard. The families were recipients of many recreations and cultural events, making a good life for all employees. This marker is dedicated and placed in honor of all textile mill workers, their families and company owners. It was their hard work, loyalty and pride in their work, companies and community that made this small town-hometown a great community for all citizens.

Erected by the Alabama Tourism Department and the City of Alexander City
June 2010

End of Alexander City: A Textile Community