Thursday, August 15, 2013

Abbeville, Alabama

Historic Downtown Abbeville, Alabama

Country United States
State Alabama
County Henry
 • Mayor James Giganti Jr.
 • Total 15.6 sq mi (40.4 km2)
 • Land 15.5 sq mi (40.3 km2)
 • Water 0.1 sq mi (0.1 km2)  0.32%
Elevation 449 ft (137 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 2,688
 • Density 192/sq mi (74.1/km2)
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 36310
Area code(s) 334
FIPS code 01-00124
Abbeville is a city in Henry County, Alabama, United States. It is part of the Dothan, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area. At the 2010 census, the population was 2,688. The city is the county seat of Henry County. It is the first city alphabetically, both by city and state, in the Rand McNally Road Atlas. It is home to two high schools: Abbeville High School and Abbeville Christian Academy. It holds chapters of the Red Cross and Habitat for Humanity.


 According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 15.6 square miles (40 km2), of which, 15.6 square miles (40 km2) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) of it (0.32%) is water.


Abbeville is the oldest remaining colonial settlement in East Alabama from Florida to the Tennessee line. Its older than the county of Henry and the State of Alabama. The city was named for "Abbe", a local Muscogee Indian man at the time of the town's settlement. The name means "a grove of dogwood trees". An active trading post was located in Abbeville in Alabama Territory early in 1819. The first settler gateway to the wiregrass was at Franklin located fourteen miles west of Abbeville.
In 1944, an activist African-American woman, Recy Taylor, was gang-raped by six white men. Even though the men admitted the rape to authorities, two grand juries subsequently declined to indict the men (as documented in the book, At the Dark End of the Street). From a historic point of view, "The Recy Taylor case brought the building blocks of the Montgomery bus boycott together a decade earlier."

In 1950 Abbeville had a population of 2,162.


Abbeville is governed via a mayor-council government. The mayor is elected at large. The city council consists of five members who are elected from districts.


Abbeville is served by one radio station, WESZ-LP.


Public schools

Abbeville is a part of the Henry County Public Schools system.
  • Abbeville High School
  • Abbeville Middle School
  • Abbeville Elementary School

Private schools

  • Abbeville Christian Academy

Notable natives

  • Chris Porter, former Auburn University basketball player and professional basketball player
  • Recy Taylor, an African-American woman whose gang-rape in Abbeville by six white men provided an early organizational spark for the nationwide Civil Rights movement.


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