Portal:Alabama

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Alabama (/ˌæləˈbæmə/ AL-ə-BAM) is a state in the Southeastern region of the United States. It borders Tennessee to the north, Georgia to the east, Florida and the Gulf of Mexico to the south, and Mississippi to the west. Alabama is the 30th largest by area and the 24th-most populous of the 50 U.S. states.

Alabama is nicknamed the Yellowhammer State, after the state bird. Alabama is also known as the "Heart of Dixie" and the "Cotton State". The state tree is the longleaf pine, and the state flower is the camellia. Alabama's capital is Montgomery, and its largest city by population and area is Huntsville. Its oldest city is Mobile, founded by French colonists (Alabama Creoles) in 1702 as the capital of French Louisiana. Greater Birmingham is Alabama's largest metropolitan area and its economic center.

Originally home to many native tribes, present-day Alabama was a Spanish territory beginning in the sixteenth century until the French acquired it in the early eighteenth century. The British won the territory in 1763 until losing it in the American Revolutionary War. Spain held Mobile as part of Spanish West Florida until 1813. In December 1819, Alabama was recognized as a state. During the antebellum period, Alabama was a major producer of cotton, and widely used African American slave labor. In 1861, the state seceded from the United States to become part of the Confederate States of America, with Montgomery acting as its first capital, and rejoined the Union in 1868. Following the American Civil War, Alabama would suffer decades of economic hardship, in part due to agriculture and a few cash crops being the main driver of the state's economy. Similar to other former slave states, Alabamian legislators employed Jim Crow laws from the late 19th century up until the 1960s. High-profile events such as the Selma to Montgomery march made the state a major focal point of the civil rights movement in the 1950s and 1960s. (Full article...)

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William Lowndes Yancey (August 10, 1814 – July 27, 1863) was a political leader in the Antebellum South. As an influential "Fire-Eater", he defended slavery and urged Southerners to secede from the Union in response to Northern antislavery agitation.

Though a critic of John C. Calhoun at the time of the Nullification Crisis of 1832–33, in the late 1830s, Yancey began to identify with Calhoun, and, by 1849, Yancey was a firm supporter of Calhoun's "Southern Address" and an adamant opponent of the Compromise of 1850. Throughout the 1850s, Yancey demonstrated an ability to hold large audiences under his spell for hours at a time and was sometimes referred to as the "Orator of Secession". At the 1860 Democratic National Convention, he was instrumental in splitting the party into Northern and Southern factions as a leading opponent of Stephen A. Douglas and the concept of popular sovereignty. He used the phrase "squatter sovereignty" in a speech he gave at the convention to describe popular sovereignty. (Full article...)
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Rickwood Field, located in Birmingham, Alabama, is the oldest professional baseball park in the United States. It was built for the Birmingham Barons in 1910 by industrialist and team-owner Rick Woodward and has served as the home park for the Birmingham Barons and the Birmingham Black Barons of the Negro leagues. Though the Barons moved their home games to the Hoover Met in the suburbs, and most recently to Regions Field in Birmingham, Rickwood Field has been preserved and is undergoing gradual restoration as a "working museum" where baseball's history can be experienced. The Barons also play one regular season game a year at Rickwood Field. Rickwood Field is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. (Full article...)
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