Learn all about the great state of Alabama:
Nestled on the Gulf Coast in between Mississippi and Georgia lies the 22nd state to be admitted into the union, Alabama. This southeastern state is also bordered by Florida and Tennessee in addition to Georgia, Mississippi, and the Gulf of Mexico. Unofficially called Yellowhammer State due to the state bird, it is also referred to as the "Heart of Dixie," which is its more prominent nickname. Camellia, a beautiful pink flower the color of a flamingo with a yellow center, is the state flower and the Longleaf Pine, which can grow to be over 110 feet and is a threatened species. Currently Alabama is fourth in the nation when it comes to automobile output and the multiple factories housed within its borders has created over 67,800 jobs since 1993.
Alabama is a state that has invested heavily in a lot of modern interests including aerospace, health care, education, banking, as well as a number of other heavy industries like automobile manufacturing, steel production, mineral extraction, and fabrication. According the federal analysis from 2008, the state's GDP had increased 0.7% from the year before and the biggest increase was within the area of information. The per capita income in 1999 for the state was just under $20,000 though it is certainly much higher now. In addition to heavy manufacturing and modernization investments, Alabama also has many agricultural outputs. These outputs happen to include poultry, cattle, peanuts, eggs, cotton, milk, peaches, soybeans, vegetables, plant nursery items, and grains like corn and sorghum. Despite being known as "The Cotton State," Alabama actually ranks between eighth and tenth place when it comes to national cotton production.
In addition to agricultural outputs, Alabama also outputs industrial items like steel and iron products. These products include steel pipes and cast-ion. Other productions include paper, wood products, mining, apparel, cars and trucks, lumber, and plastic products. It is also a producer of electronic and aerospace products though this occurs most often around Huntsville which is know as “Rocket City” building the rockets that has taken man to the moon. Huntsville, Alabama is home to NASA’s Marshall Flight Center, Space Station Payloads, and a host of other NASA operations. This area is also known as the second pentagon because of BRAC Base Re-Alignment Committee decision to expand the Army base.
Interestingly enough, the economy in Birmingham was completely transformed during the 1970s and 1980s by the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The school invested in medical research and bio-technology and the hospital at this university is a level 1 trauma center. This is particularly special as it is the only one of its kind in Alabama and it provides breakthrough medical research and health care to those in the state.
Having begun with less than 2,000 citizens of the state in the 1800, Alabama has now risen to almost 5,000,000 people. The largest city by population in Alabama is the city of Greater Birmingham area. This is actually a metropolitan area, which is composed of seven counties within central Alabama and centered around two large cities, Birmingham and Hoover. The area is actually part of the Birmingham-Hoover-Cullman area, which is combined for all population and other statistics. By this combination of statistics, the area of Greater Birmingham contains around 1,250,000 inhabitants, though this number is surely higher now as the last census was taken in 2008. The largest city in the state by land is Huntsville which has a little below 400,000 people living in it but the largest county in the state is a little place that goes by the name of Baldwin County which is the largest county in Alabama in both water and land area.
As far as size goes, the state itself is the thirtieth largest state within the United States at 52,423 square miles. 3.19% of the area is water and this makes Alabama the twenty-third in the country for the amount of surface water. The geography of Alabama is actually interesting as the state itself is full of gentle plains that descend gently into the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River. The elevation of the state ranges from sea level in the Mobile Bay area to over 1,800 feet in the Appalachian Mountain range, which is located at the northeastern part of the state. Mount Cheaha, at 2,407 feet, is the highest point in Alabama. This means that within the entire state there is a mountain range, plenty of beaches, access to the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River, as well as gentle plains, many parks, and large metropolis areas.
Alabama's climate is also interesting, and not just because of its ability to say that it, along with Kansas, has the most EF5 tornadoes yearly than any other state in the United States of America. Admittedly, the tornadoes are a large part of what makes the Alabama climate worth being known about prior to visitation there. After all, it does have the dubious honor of having the most tornado-related deaths than any other state except for Mississippi and Texas. South Alabama also reports more thunderstorms per year than any other part of the U.S. and Mobile Bay, near the Gulf Coast, reports 70 to 80 days a year where thunder has been heard. The state itself is classified as a humid subtropical area and it has an average temperature of 64 degrees Fahrenheit.
Where to Visit
Any fan of nature will be right at home in Alabama with its beautiful beaches and multiple beautiful parks including the Horseshoe Bend National Military Park, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Tuskegee Airman National Historic Site, Russell Cave National Monument, Tuskegee Institute National Historic Site. The state also boasts four national forests, which include Conecuh, Tuskegee, William B. Bankhead, and Talladega. In addition to this, Alabama contains the Natchez Trace Parkway, the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail, and the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail. Another notable thing about Alabama is that it contains the longest natural bridge to be found anywhere east of the Rocky Mountains called the "Natural Bridge". There are many other historical areas to visit that do not have to deal with parks and Alabama is a great place to tan and shop with its many beaches and collections of shopping centers and malls.