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Chambers County from Alabama As It Is by B. F. Riley - 1887

Chambers County from Northern Alabama by Smith and DeLand - 1888


Source: Alabama As It Is by Benjamin Franklin Riley, D. D., 1887 , Transcribed by C. Anthony

CHAMBERS COUNTY

Chambers county was created in 1832, and named in honor of Hon. Henry Chambers, of Madison county. It is one of the boundary counties on the east, and is separated from Georgia by the Chattahoochee river. Area of the county 610 square miles.

Population in 1870, 17,562; population in 1880, 23,440. White, 11,364; colored, 12,076.

Tilted Land: 149,283 acres.—Area planted in cotton, 70,934 acres; in corn, 49,306 acres; in oats, 9,258 acres; in wheat, 11,520 acres; in tobacco, 39 acres; in sugar-cane, 211 acres; in sweet potatoes, 1,038 acres.

Cotton Production: 19,476 bales.

The general surface of Chambers is neither mountainous nor level, but is rolling. The northwestern portion is pine land with gray soil. All the remainder of the county, with but little exception, is mulatto soil with red clay subsoil.

Originally these lands were covered with a growth of oak, hickory, chestnut, gum, etc. Professor Tourney, late State Geologist of Alabama, remarked, on one occasion, that there were not forty acres of land in the county on which an industrious man would fail to make a competent support.

Chambers is regarded the best average county in Alabama. The subsoil is of such character that the surface can be made the most productive possible. Nearly every part of the county is susceptible of cultivation, and but little difference exists as to the capacity for productiveness. The land is red, mulatto or gray. The red is better for grain, if no fertilizers are used, and the gray is better suited to the production of cotton. The mulatto-colored lands are best suited to all crops, and mature their crops earlier. While the red lands seem better suited to the growth of grain, a considerable proportion of cotton is raised upon them. These red lands have from the first been selected by farmers, and it rarely occurs that any large areas can now be found which have not been put in cultivation. One finds the palatial mansions of the typical Southern planter of the long ago, embowered in magnificent groves of native oak, situated almost invariably in the midst of these lands.

The timbers of Chambers are mostly of oaks, and nowhere on the continent can more luxuriant groves of red, Spanish, white, and post oaks be seen than upon the red, rolling lands of this county. An occasional belt of yellow or long-leaf pine is found.

The ordinary fruits of this latitude grow in Chambers quite readily, but it seems peculiarly suited to the production of peaches. Professor Eugene A. Smith, the present State Geologist, is reported to have said that Chambers is the most reliable county for the production of peaches that can be found in the United States.

The county is watered chiefly by the Tallapoosa and Chattahoochee rivers and their tributaries.

The mineral resources of the county are, as yet, unknown. Only such specimens are found as favor the conjecture that they exist. This is true of iron ore. Corundum is found in great quantities in Chambers. In the northern part of the county is a beautiful soapstone of gray and blue, which admits of as fine polish as marble. A belt of this beautiful stone extends across the county. It is manufactured into monuments and tombstones. Granite and graphite also exist.

Large mills for grinding com and wheat are found at different points in Chambers. There are two cotton factories in the county, one near West Point, on the Chattahoochee, and the other upon thesame stream, but lower down.

Chambers is favored with three lines of railway—the Western railroad, which is the main line between Montgomery and Atlanta, and the Columbus and Western, and the East Alabama and Ciuciunati railroad, which terminates, at present, in the county.

LaFayette, the county-seat, with a population of 1,500, Bluffton, Cussetta, Fredonia, and Milltown are places of importance and have good educational and religious advantages. There is an admirable system of free schools throughout the entire county. One of the attractive points in Chambers, and one which illustrates the capability of the soils to produce fruit, is the famous Parnell Peach Farm, in the southeastern part of the county. It embraces over one thousand acres of fruit trees. The proprietor gathers much of his delicious fruit as early as the beginning of May, and sends it to remote points, such as New York and Chicago. Fresh and well-matured peaches command almost fabulous prices in these markets at so early a season. The annual income of this fruit farm is immense.

Many hundreds of acres of land are lying idle in this county awaiting the hands of the tiller. Every disposition exists on the part of the residents to induce investors to purchase farms and homes, and settle in their midst. To those thus coming the most reasonable rates will be offered. In some parts of the county, lands may be purchased for $2 per acre, while the best lands will not exceed $10 per acre. Health, climate, superior water, excellent soil, the best social advantages, and a warm welcome are among the inducements presented to immigrants and investors by the people of Chambers county. There are 160 acres of government laud in the county.


 Source: Northern Alabama - Historical and Biographical by Smith & De Land, Birmingham, Ala 1888 - Transcribed by Veneta McKinney

CHAMBERS COUNTY.

Population: White 11,364; colored 12,076. Area 610 square miles. Woodland, all. All metamorphie.

Acres - In cotton (approximately) 70,934; in corn 49, 306; in oats 9,258; in wheat 11,520; in tobacco 39; in sugar-cane 211; in sweet potatoes 1,038.  Approximate number of bales of cotton, 20,100.

County Seat - La Fayette; population 2,000; located on East Alabama Railroad, eighteen miles from Opelika, and eighty-four miles from Montgomery.

Newspapers published at County Seat - Chambers County Democrat and Sun, both Democratic.

Post offices in the County - Bloomingdale, Bosworth, Buffalo, Chapel Hill, Cusseta, Fredonia, Happy Land, Hickory Flat, La Fayette, Lystra, Milltown, Oakbowery, Osanippa, Sandy Creek, Sharon, Stroud, Tuckersburgh.

Chambers County lies in the eastern portion of the State, and joins the State of Georgia, from which a portion of it is separated by the Coosa River.

The county was created in 1832 from a portion of the lands ceded by the Muscogees at the treaty of Cusseta. It was named in honor of Hon. Henry Chambers, of Madison County, who represented Alabama in the Senate of the United States at the time of his death in 1826.

The area of the county is about 610 square miles. The surface is rolling and hilly, with light soils, having a good sub-soil, though in the county there is a considerable area of bottom lands rendered very fertile by alluvial deposits. The land generally is red, mulatto or gray, the first of which is specially adapted to the culture of grain. The gray lands are best adapted to the production of cotton, while the mulatto lands produce all crops abundantly.

This county is well wooded, and it contains fine forests of red, white, post and Spanish oaks, which grow luxuriantly on the red hill lands. Longleaf pine is found in limited quantities, but not sufficiently to be enumerated as one of the factors of material wealth.

Chambers County is well watered, being touched on the southeastern quarter by the Chattahoochee River, while the Tallapoosa cuts off its northwestern corner. Through the center of the county there runs from the northeast to the southeast a ridge, which is the watershed that divides the waters that flow into the Chattahoochee and those that flow into the Tallapoosa. The body of the county is watered by several creeks, tributary to one or the other of these rivers, the principal of which are: Weehadkee, Oclickee, Osanippa, Heolethloochee, Cohelsaneia and several other minor streams.

The climate of the county is excellent and especially adaptable for fruit culture, which promises to become an important industry. At present it ranks as one of the first counties of the State in the production of peaches. The mineral resources of the county have never been developed, but there is very little doubt that it contains many articles highly valuable. It adjoins the counties of Tallapoosa and Randolph, in both of which gold is known to exist, and by many it is thought that this precious metal will one day be discovered in Chambers. Granite has been found here, as well as a superior article of graphite, both of which might be developed with great profit.

This county is possessed of ample water-power, which is being utilized for running grist- and saw-mills and gins. There are two cotton factories on the Chattahoochee, partly in Chambers and partly in Georgia.

The Western Railroad of Alabama passes through the southern corner of the county, and the East Alabama & Cincinnati Railroad extends to the central portion from Opelika, terminating at Buffalo Wallow.

La Fayette is a pleasant little city. It is located in the central portion of the county, and enjoys an excellent trade. It possesses all the advantages of rail communication, and is the seat of several educational institutions of ii high order. The inhabitants are noted for their refinement and hospitality, and no city of its size in the State can present more attractions as a home.

Churches of the leading Christian denominations are found here.

The other towns, worthy of mention, are Fredonia, Milltown and Cussetta. At the hitter place the celebrated treaty was concluded with the Muscogees in 1832, whereby that tribe surrendered a large body of land, the last of its possessions in Alabama, to the General Government.


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