The best way to know about Huntsville is to travel around the city and chat with the locals. Another best way to know about Huntsville is to read the facts. So here are a few interesting facts about Huntsville-
Image by Nhlarry at English Wikipedia [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
Huntsville Geographic and Demographic Fast Facts
- Huntsville is in Madison County.
- It is located in the northernmost region of Alabama, United States near the Tennessee border.
- It is the county seat of Madison County.
- It is the fourth largest city in the state.
- The ethnic composition of Huntsville includes- White- 64.47%, Black or African American-30.21%, Native American-0.54%, Asian-2.22%, Pacific Islander-0.06%, from other races-0.66%, and from two or more races-1.84%.
- The city covers an area of more than 68,000 hectares.
Huntsville History Fast Facts
- Huntsville was first settled in 1805 by John Hunt who lived near a spring and named it Hunt’s Spring.
- Huntsville was incorporated in 1811 and was the first official town in the U.S. state of Alabama.
- In 1816, the first courthouse was built.
- In 1819, Huntsville was the first capital of Alabama, which later changed to Cahawab in 1820 and then Montgomery in 1846.
- In 1869, Huntsville was set up as an agricultural community by Captain George Hunt.
- In 1886, railway was introduced in Huntsville and the Village of Huntsville was formed.
- In 1901, electric cars arrived in Huntsville.
- Huntsville became a major cotton trading center during the Civil War. The city grew rapidly from the wealth generated by the railroad and cotton industries in the area.
- Huntsville served as a small city until 1940.
- In 1941, a center for America Rocket R&D- Redstone Arsenal was set up here.
- In 1960, Huntsville entered into space exploration technology with the NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center at the Redstone Arsenal.
Huntsville Government and Economy Fast Facts
- Huntsville has a Mayor-Council type of government.
- It is listed as one of the best places to live in Alabama by several publications.
- Several Fortune 500 companies call this Rocket City home.
- The economy of Huntsville is majorly influenced by defense and technology.
- NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, Redstone Arsenal and Cummings Research Park call Huntsville home.
- Cummings Research Park in Huntsville is the 2nd largest research park in the US and the 4th largest in the world.
- Huntsville is listed in the “Best Places in the Country for doing Business” by Forbes Magazine.
Huntsville Important and Interesting Fast Facts
- Huntsville is nicknamed as “Rocket City”, “H-Town”, and “Huntsvegas”.
- The Huntsville Railroad Depot is one of the oldest depots in the United States
- The city has the largest collection of pre-Civil War/antebellum homes in the state.
- The city is deeply in love with rocket and science. It has spacecraft, rocket and missile theme everywhere around the city.
- The city is home to the oldest hardware store in the state- Harrison Brothers Hardware. The store started in 1879 as a tobacco shop.
- The Huntsville Botanical Garden houses the largest open-air butterfly house in the nation.
- Huntsville is listed in the “America’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations” by the National Trust for Historic Preservation (2010).
- According to U.S. National Science Foundation (2011, August), Huntsville was ranked fourth Geekiest City in the United States.
- According to Gallup (September 2011), Huntsville was placed at the fourth position among the “Most Optimistic Cities in America”.
- The daily newspaper of Huntsville is “The Huntsville Times”.