Courtland in Lawrence County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
The African ~ American Experience
African~Americans played a very significant role in the early history of Courtland. Most came as slaves from the older southern states to help clear the land, to plant crops of cotton and corn, and to serve as household domestics. President Thomas Jeffersonís great~grandson, William S. Bankhead, brought his personal servant and valet, Jupiter, from Monticello when he settled near Courtland in the 1840s. Skilled slave craftsmen also assisted in constructing many Courtland buildings before the Civil War. After emancipation, most African~Americans earned their livelihood as tenants and small farmers.
Before being officially denied political participation by the state constitution of 1901, Courtlandís African~American community produced the most successful local Republican party organization in North Alabama, on occasion uniting with area whites to create a biracial government. H. H. Stewart, a graduate of Williams College (Mass.), was an outstanding educational and political leader of the Courtland black community during this period. In the early 20th century, many Courtland area African~Americans migrated to the North and Upper Midwest to seek greater economic and social opportunity.
Erected 1994 by the Courtland Historical Foundation
Location. 34° 40.013′ N, 87° 18.651′ W. Marker is in Courtland, Alabama, in Lawrence County. Click for map. Located backside of Square Park in downtown Courtland, facing Park. Marker is in this post office area: Courtland AL 35618, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Town of Courtland / Early Settlers (here, next to this marker); Courtland's Early Architecture (within shouting distance of this marker); The Red Rovers / Red Rovers Roster (within shouting distance of this marker); A Cotton Kingdom (within shouting distance of this marker); Early Roads / One of the South's First Railroads 1832 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); American Legion - Post 58 (about 400 feet away); Harris-Simpson Home (about 700 feet away); McMahon House (approx. 0.3 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Courtland.
Categories. • African Americans • Government • Politics •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. This page has been viewed 1,071 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Sandra Hughes of Killen, Usa. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.