Brookside in Jefferson County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
Brookside's Unique Heritage / Brookside Russian Orthodox Church
Brookside's Unique Heritage
Originally settled by the Samuel and Mary “Polly” Fields family in the 1820s, Brookside enjoyed a quiet life as an agricultural community until industrialists discovered rich coal deposits here. Sloss-Sheffield Iron and Steel Company mined the area to produce its own coal for use in the blast furnaces located in Birmingham. Brookside's unique ethnic makeup, however, sets it apart from other similarly founded Alabama towns. While quite a variety of ethnic groups called Birmingham home, Slovaks were the dominant ethnic group in Brookside. Slovak immigrants left their homes in Nieletz, Saros, and other villages in the Austro-Hungarian Empire to settle in Brookside, Alabama, in the 1890s. By 1910, Slovak families constituted approximately 37% of Brookside's population. They established two churches, a school, and a social organization and firmly rooted their eastern European traditions in the fabric of Brookside's daily existence.
Brookside Russian Orthodox Church
Brookside's Orthodox congregation established the first Russian Orthodox Church south of the Mason-Dixon line. Over the course of ten years, the Orthodox in Brookside built three temples. A tornado destroyed the first temple which was dedicated to Saint George. The
Erected 2010 by Alabama Tourism Department and the City of Brookside.
Location. 33° 38.23′ N, 86° 55.132′ W. Marker is in Brookside, Alabama, in Jefferson County. Marker is at the intersection of Park Avenue and Pastor Street, on the left when traveling south on Park Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 105 Pastor Street, Brookside AL 35036, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Downtown Graysville (approx. 3.2 miles away); Gardendale, Alabama (approx. 6.2 miles away); Virgil Allen Howard (approx. 6.2 miles away); Black Creek Park, Five Mile Creek Greenway Partnership and the Fultondale Coke Oven Park (approx. 7 miles away); Historic Lakeview Cemetery (approx. 7.4 miles away); North Birmingham (approx. 8.3 miles away); Julius Ellsberry Memorial Park (approx. 8½ miles away); Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth Bethel Baptist Church (approx. 9 miles away).
Also see . . .
1. The History of Brookside, Alabama. (Submitted on June 7, 2011, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama.)
2. St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church. (Submitted on June 22, 2011, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
Categories. • Churches & Religion • Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 7, 2011, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. This page has been viewed 1,244 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on June 7, 2011, by Timothy Carr of Birmingham, Alabama. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.