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Stories from Tuscaloosa’s History

Tunnel Story Persists

ONE of the most persistent stories in Tuscaloosa regarding a tunnel from the Friedman Library River. It is said by those who believe the story that Robert Jemison had the tunnel dug in order that he might…

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Frank Gamble Blair

Cities do not grow of their own accord, but strong men can make them grow. Such a man was Frank Gamble Blair, who came to Tuscaloosa Oct. 7, 1895 presumably as a coal mine operator and remained for 40 years, during which he operated at some time practically every enterprise for the City of Tuscaloosa…

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The “Big Gully” and “the Big Ravine”

On the night of June 6, 1866, Tuscaloosa was deluged with the heaviest rainfall in the history of this community and she bore the scars for 44 years. They might remain with us today but for the vision and courage of four men, William C. Jemison, George W. Simpson, Walter C. Harris and Frank G. Blair. The first three mentioned stood personal surety for the project that tamed the Big Gully and the fourth converted a big ditch into a select residential section 25 years later…

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Horse-Shoe Robertson

In 1837 there lived in Tuscaloosa County a man who was famous in history and in fiction. James Robertson, better known as “Horseshoe Robinson” was born in South Carolina in 1759. During the American Revolution he was a scout for the Continental armies in South Carolina and a terror to the Tories…

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Remember Lake Lorraine?

THE Tuscaloosa and Castle Hill Real Estate and Manufacturing Company began work on its amusement park soon after the incorporation of the company. The first step in the development of the park was the making of an artificial lake by damming a small stream that flowed through the company’s property…

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Early Visitors to Tuscaloosa County

THE BEGINNINGS of Tuscaloosa are hidden in a sort of historical mist; we do not know for a certainty the identity of the first European who set foot on what is now Tuscaloosa County soil or the name of the first white settler. However, some facts connected with the exploration and settlement of this region are known, and some interesting conjectures have been made…

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