St. Clair County Data
St. Clair County Neighbors
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About St. Clair County, Alabama...
St. Clair County was created from portions of Shelby County by the Alabama Territorial General Assembly on November 20, 1818. Two years later, part of St. Clair County was used to create Jefferson County. Then, in 1836, a portion of St. Clair was divided to establish Cherokee and DeKalb counties. After the Civil War, a northeast section of the county was used to create Etowah County, resulting in St. Clair's present boundaries.
The county was named in honor of General Arthur St. Clair who traveled to America from Scotland as an ensign in the British Navy. St. Clair settled in Pennsylvania and became a general in the Continental Army during the American Revolution and president of the Continental Congress. Most of St. Clair County's early settlers came from Tennessee, Virginia, and the Carolinas. Some of the county's earliest settlements and towns were Ashville, Odenville, Riverside, and Springville.
Ashville, originally called St. Clairsville, served as the first county seat. Ashville was named for John Ash, a senator in the state's first General Assembly. Located in the northern part of St. Clair County, Ashville served as the county's sole county seat from 1821 to 1907. Because Backbone Mountain bisects St. Clair County, many of the county's southern residents had difficulty traveling to Ashville. Therefore, the Alabama Constitution of 1901 provided for Pell City in the southern part of the county to serve as the county seat for the Southern Judicial District. A constitutional amendment in 1907 established Pell City, named for early settler George H. Pell, as the second county seat. Although both Ashville and Pell City handle county business, the county commission meets in Ashville. St. Clair County is the only county in Alabama to have two county seats.
On April 27, 2011, a massive storm, causing numerous powerful tornadoes, struck the southeastern United States. More than 250 people were killed in Alabama, including 16 people in St. Clair County, including one person in Pell City and one person in Moody.
Like most of Alabama's counties, farming was the prevailing occupation of St. Clair County until well into the twentieth century. Corn and cattle were the county's original major agricultural products. By the mid-twentieth century, however, farmers diversified into a variety of other products. Today, beef cattle, hay, tomatoes, poultry, and sod are St. Clair's main agricultural products. As a series of locks and dams made the Coosa River navigable in the mid-twentieth century, the resulting hydroelectric power made possible a number of industries, including lumber and paper mills.
By the 1990s, the automotive and aerospace industries had come to St. Clair County. Recently, two new German automotive companies—EST-Kelly, Inc. and WKW—announced plans to build facilities in Pell City. In addition, Honda parts supplier Yachiyo, which is located in northern St. Clair County, announced plans for a $28 million expansion. Longtime employer Avondale Mills, however, closed down in July 2006, shutting down a plant in Pell City and laying off scores of workers. Major natural gas deposits were discovered in 2007 and may indicate a change in the county's economy.
The county has a total area of 654 square miles, of which 632 square miles is land and 22 square miles (3.3%) is water. The population recorded in the 1820 Federal Census was 4,166. The 2010 census recorded 85,593 residents in the county.
Neighboring counties are Etowah County (north), Calhoun County (east), Talladega County (southeast), Shelby County (southwest), Jefferson County (west), and Blount County (northwest).
Communities in the county include Ashville, Leeds (mostly in Jefferson and Shelby Counties), Moody, Pell City, Springville, Trussville (mostly in Jefferson County), Argo (partly in Jefferson County), Branchville, Margaret, Odenville, Ragland, Riverside, Steele, Vincent (partly in Shelby and Talladega Counties), Acmar, Cooks Springs, Cropwell, Hill Number 1, New London, Pinedale Shores, Wattsville, and Whitney.
St. Clair 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.