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

Salem, Alabama

Founded 1835

 
 
Salem, Alabama Marker (Side A) image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
1. Salem, Alabama Marker (Side A)
Inscription. Side A:
Among the earliest settlers were the families of Henry Crowder, Dr. D. W. Floyd, Charles Nelms, W. W. Burt, George Heard, John Askew, Moses Pruitt, and Dr. McCoy. Rev. F. L. Cherry, leading historian of East Alabama’s first 50 years, wrote that the town was laid off in 1836 by Benjamin H. Baker, Dr. Erastus Jones, and B. S. Mangham.

A schoolhouse was built in 1837. Professor Sheppard, the first teacher, was followed by Professor Sanders in 1838. Academies for the girls and boys, Baptist and Methodist Churches and a camp meeting ground were early additions to the community. A stagecoach stop was located on the west side of town. A “Picnic” ground popular for public gatherings probably saw its most exciting day in an 1856 Presidential rally. By 1855, railroad service had been established from Salem to Opelika and Columbus, Georgia.

Side B:
Local tradition maintains that a district courthouse was built in Salem to serve upper Russell County. The building still stands. When Lee was created on December 5, 1866, Salem became a part of the new county and received the second highest vote total for seat of government. The first three Lee County Probate Judges came from Old Russell County.

Two and one half miles east of this site is Wacoochee Covered Bridge, the last remaining
Salem, Alabama Marker (Side B) image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
2. Salem, Alabama Marker (Side B)
“Kissin” bridge in Lee County and one of a very few found in Alabama. This one span 75 foot town lattice bridge was built not later than between 1865 and 1880. It has been fully restored by the Lee County Commission.
 
Erected 1979 by Historic Chattahoochee Commission and the Lee County Historical Society.
 
Location. 32° 35.91′ N, 85° 14.45′ W. Marker is in Salem, Alabama, in Lee County. Marker is at the intersection of U.S. 280 and County Road 633, on the right when traveling east on U.S. 280. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 8671 U.S. Highway 280 East, Salem AL 36874, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Bean's Mill (approx. 7 miles away); Shady Grove Christian Church (approx. 7.3 miles away); Lebanon Methodist Meeting House (approx. 7.6 miles away); Camp Opelika (approx. 7.8 miles away); Thompson Chapel (approx. 8.2 miles away); Killgore Scholarships / Some Terms of Scholarships (approx. 8.7 miles away); First United Methodist Church (approx. 8.7 miles away); Lee County Courthouse / Lee County Probate Judges (approx. 8.7 miles away).
 
Regarding Salem, Alabama. The Wacoochee Covered Bridge or better known as
Salem, Alabama Marker across from the Salem Volunteer Fire Department image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
3. Salem, Alabama Marker across from the Salem Volunteer Fire Department
the Salem Shotwell Bridge was damaged in 2005. The damaged bridge was removed from its original site and rebuilt at its new home in Opelika’s Municipal Park.
 
Also see . . .  The Shotwell Bridge Story. (Submitted on January 21, 2011, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama.)
 
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
 
Salem, Alabama Marker located in front of Salem United Methodist Church image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
4. Salem, Alabama Marker located in front of Salem United Methodist Church
Salem United Methodist Church founded in the 1840's image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
5. Salem United Methodist Church founded in the 1840's
Salem First Baptist Church founded 1845 image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
6. Salem First Baptist Church founded 1845
The Askew Hotel built in 1838 image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
7. The Askew Hotel built in 1838
Old Salem Antiques Store circa 1840's served Salem as General Store, Depot, & Cotton Warehouse image. Click for full size.
By Tim & Renda Carr, January 16, 2011
8. Old Salem Antiques Store circa 1840's served Salem as General Store, Depot, & Cotton Warehouse
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 21, 2011, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. This page has been viewed 1,391 times since then and 71 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on January 21, 2011, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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