10 Fun Facts About Alabama
The Heart of Dixie: Home to some of the biggest historical events of our nation, home to some of the greatest athletes, musicians and celebrities to ever grace our televisions, and the largest supplier of cast-iron products. Alabama has helped shape much of America’s history, and here are just 10 fun, fascinating facts about the state.
1. Big-name baseball stars
Baseball great Henry Louis (Hank) Aaron was born in Mobile in 1934. On April 8, 1974, Aaron broke Babe Ruth’s record by hitting his 715th career homerun. He finished his career with a total of 755 homeruns, and that held until 2007 when Barry Bonds broke the record.
2. The real birthplace of Mardi Gras
New Orleans and Mardi Gras are practically synonymous, with how enormous this festive event has come to be to Louisiana. But did you know, that Mardi Gras began actually began in Mobile, Alabama?
3. The first psychiatrist
Peter Bryce is the state’s first recognized psychiatrist. Bryce Hospital on the University of Alabama’s campus is named after him.
4. Heisman winner
Mark Ingram won the first Heisman Trophy for the University of Alabama in 2009. And with how important college football is to Alabama, this was HUGE!
5. State motto
Audemus jura nostra defendere is the official state motto, which means "we dare defend our rights."
6. Contribution to space exploration
Without Alabama, space travel would’ve been far less possible! Workers here in Alabama built the first rocket to put humans on the moon— Apollo 11.
The innovation continues for good old Bama. The first electric streetcar in the world ran down Dexter Avenue in Montgomery.
8. The biggest hit song
Even though Lynyrd Skynyrd’s No. 1 song was “Sweet Home Alabama,” all their members were actually from the state of Georgia.
9. Biggest names in college football
The first game played between the University of Alabama and Auburn University took place on February 22, 1893.
10. Natural resources
Wikipedia - Steel (Alfred T. Palmer - Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Collection. http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/fsac.1a35062)
Alabama is the only state that has the ability to produce iron and steel with its own natural resources.