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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Hoover in Jefferson County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
 

Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham

The South and North Railroad Cut.

 
 
Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, September 20, 2008
1. Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham Marker
Inscription. In 1858, the State of Alabama, wanting to develop coal and iron industries in Jefferson County, Had John T. Milner survey Shades Mountain for the most practical route for the South and North Railroad to cross. He selected Brock's Gap, named for original land purchaser, Pinkney L. Brock. Work began immediately. The cut, now passing under South Shades Crest Road, was blasted by nitroglycerin through a bed of limestone 75 feet deep and was heralded as the deepest railroad cut in the world. Delayed by the Civil War, work on the line was finally completed by the firm of Bartley and Boyles of Helena Under Supt. J.F.B. Jackson in 1871.

(Reverse):
Birmingham, the first industrial city in Alabama, developed around the intersection of the South and North Railroad with the Alabama and Chattanooga Railroad and was an important transportation center. It became a city of the New South following the ravages of the Civil War. Many destitute men rushed there to find work in the mines or on the railroads. The South and North Railroad became part of the L & N Railroad system. When L & N built the tunnel now in use under South Shades Crest Road, the old route became obsolete. This old railroad bed can still be seen on the opposite side of the road. The ground around the cut is littered with large blocks of stone cut from the mountain.
Side B: Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, September 20, 2008
2. Side B: Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham Marker

 
Erected by Birmingham - Jefferson Historical Society and the Linn - Henley Trust.
 
Location. 33° 20.328′ N, 86° 52.47′ W. Marker is in Hoover, Alabama, in Jefferson County. Marker is on South Shades Crest Road ¾ mile south of Bessemer Cut Off Road (State Highway 150), on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Birmingham AL 35244, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Canaan Baptist Church (approx. 2.9 miles away); Ross Bridge (approx. 3.3 miles away); Helena Freight House & Depot (approx. 3.4 miles away); Central Iron Works (approx. 3.5 miles away); Helena, Alabama (approx. 3.5 miles away); Harmony Graveyard (approx. 3.8 miles away); Overseer’s House (approx. 4.2 miles away); The Park Avenue Historical District (approx. 4.5 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Hoover.
 
Also see . . .  Brock's Gap from Birmingham Rails Website. John Stewart's Birmingham Rails is a great website about railroads and industries in and around Birmingham, Alabama (Submitted on January 23, 2010, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama.) 
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceRailroads & Streetcars
 
Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Carr, September 20, 2008
3. Brock’s Gap / Historic Gateway To Birmingham Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 23, 2010, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. This page has been viewed 2,050 times since then and 83 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on January 23, 2010, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
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