Lee County Data
Lee County Neighbors
Harris County, Georgia
Muscogee County, Georgia
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About Lee County, Alabama...
Lee County was created by an act of the Alabama legislature on December 5, 1866. The land that would eventually become Lee County came from a land cession to the United States by the Creek Indians in the 1832 Treaty of Cusseta. Lee County was created from lands carved out from Macon, Russell, Chambers, and Tallapoosa counties.
Lee County was named in honor of General Robert E. Lee. The earliest settlers came to the area from Georgia, the Carolinas, and Virginia. Some of the first towns included Opelika, Auburn, Salem, and Loachapoka. During World War II, Camp Opelika in Lee County served as one of four major prisoner-of-war camps in Alabama that housed mostly German soldiers captured in Africa and Europe. The camp then served as temporary housing for returning servicemen before the area was converted to an industrial site in the 1950s.
Opelika is the first and only county seat of Lee County. The first courthouse was built in 1867 by the formerly enslaved and renowned bridge builder Horace King. The two-story, brick building served as the county courthouse until a second courthouse was built in 1896 across the street from the original structure, which was eventually torn down. The 1896 courthouse has undergone a number of renovations since it was first built and continues to serve as the county courthouse for Lee County.
Like most of Alabama's counties, farming was the prevailing occupation of Lee County until well into the twentieth century. Cotton, corn, and cattle served as the county's main agricultural products. With its proximity to the Chattahoochee River and Georgia markets, however, shipping and other forms of transportation were also important parts of Lee County's economy in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
The first major industry in Lee County was the Opelika Cotton Mill, which opened in 1900. Industrial development increased during the 1940s after the construction of dams on the Chattahoochee and Tallapoosa rivers provided hydroelectric power to the area. In recent decades, the economy has shifted to service and industry. As the home of Auburn University, Lee County is also recognized as a center of education in the state of Alabama.
The county has a total area of 616 square miles, of which 608 square miles is land and 8.3 square mile (1.3%) is water. The population recorded in the 1870 Federal Census was 21,750. The 2010 census recorded 140,247 residents in the county.
Neighboring counties are Chambers County (north), Harris County, Georgia (northeast), Muscogee County, Georgia (east), Russell County, Macon County (southwest), and Tallapoosa County (northwest).
Communities in the county include Auburn, Opelika, Phenix City (partly in Russell County), Smiths Station, Loachapoka, Notasulga (partly in Macon County), Waverly (partly in Chambers County), Beauregard, Bee Hive, Beulah, Chewacla, Gold Hill, Hopewell, Marvyn, Roxana, Salem, and The Bottle.
Lee County, Alabama Records
Alabama Genealogy & History Network has many records on our county websites. Thousands of County marriage records are located on the county websites. Many counties have cemetery listings. Please visit the county or counties of interest to you.
Birth Records - The Alabama Department of Public Health maintains records of births from 1908 to present. This was the year Alabama began keeping official birth records. You can obtain official copies of birth certificates by visiting the birth record page on their website and following the instructions. Since there are no official birth records before 1908 for births prior to that date you will need to determine birth information from census records, bible records, baptismal records, cemetery tombstones, etc.
Death Records - The Alabama Department of Public Health maintains death records after 1908 on file. This was the year Alabama began keeping official death records. You can obtain official copies of death certificates by visiting the death record page on their website and following the instructions. Since there are no official death records before 1908 for deaths prior to that date you will need to determine death information from census records, bible records, funeral home records, cemetery tombstones, etc.
Marriage Records - We have thousands of county marriage records on our county websites. These dates will assist you greatly in obtaining a copy of the original marriage license. The Alabama Department of Public Health can provide you with information for marriages that took place from 1936 to present by by visiting the marriage record page on their website and following the instructions.
All existing county marriage records for any date not listed above (and for the dates listed above for that matter) may be obtained from the county's Probate Office in which the marriage was held.
Divorce Records - The Alabama Department of Public Health maintains divorce records from 1950 to present. You can obtain official copies of devorce records by visiting the divorce record page on their website and following the instructions. Records for divorces occuring before 1950 may be obtained from the Circuit Clerk in the county where the divorce took place.