Recent Videos and Activities for Pre-20th Century

Alabama Gold Rush

First discovered in Chilton County in the late 1830s, gold, or the promise of it, is credited with the establishment of many communities and gold-mining operations in east-central Alabama in [more]

September 17, 2019

Lafayette’s Visit

Touring the United States starting in 1824 to expose a new generation to the “Spirit of 1776,” the Marquis de la Lafayette, former aide to George Washington, arrived in Alabama [more]

September 9, 2019

Treaty of Cusseta

The Treaty of Cusseta was an agreement between the U.S. government and the Creek Nation in which the Creeks were forced to exchange their remaining land in Alabama for new [more]

August 12, 2019

Convict-Lease System

Between 1875 and 1928, the state of Alabama profited from a form of prison labor known as the convict-lease system perpetuating a form of slavery. Under this system, companies paid [more]

March 28, 2019

Alabama State University

Founded in 1867, Alabama State University is a historically black university located in Montgomery. The school’s professors and students played a major role in the city’s famous bus boycott. In [more]

March 28, 2019

Joe Cain

Joe Cain is regarded as the founder of Mobile’s modern-day Mardi Gras celebration. Before the Civil War, Mobile Mardi Gras was celebrated in conjunction with festivities to ring in the [more]

January 3, 2019

Rube Burrow

Like the more famous outlaw Jesse James, Lamar County native Reuben Houston Burrow, better known as Rube Burrow, headed a gang of train robbers that included his younger brother Jim [more]

January 2, 2019

Julia Tutwiler

Tuscaloosa native Julia Tutwiler was an educator, prison reformer, writer and outspoken proponent of education for women. She was closely involved with the founding of institutions that became the University [more]

November 27, 2018

Madame Octavia Le Vert

Madame Octavia Walton Le Vert was a 19th century socialite and writer known as the “Pride of Mobile”. She hosted lavish parties at her home for Mobile society, political figures [more]

November 16, 2018

Benjamin Turner

Benjamin Turner was an entrepreneur, business executive, civic leader, and legislator. Born into slavery, Turner became the first African American Representative from Alabama elected to the U.S. Congress. He founded [more]

October 9, 2018