Crenshaw County, Alabama
Crenshaw County is a county located in the state of Alabama and borders Montgomery, Lowndes, Pike, Coffee, Covington, and Butler counties. Crenshaw County is named in honor of a judge, Anderson Crenshaw, who was a prominent settler to what was then Butler County. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 13,906. When Crenshaw County was first established, there were years of local legislation and debate as to where the courthouse and jail should be placed. Townes that were considered and that lobbied for the courthouse and the jail were Rutledge, Luverne, and Dozier. However, when the issue was voted on by the people, Crenshaw County’s seat was positioned in Luverne. Business began at the new courthouse on Monday, June 12, 1893.
Crenshaw County was formed by the Alabama Legislature on November 24, 1866. Its lands were taken from Butler, Coffee, Covington, Pike, and Lowndes counties. Because the lands of Crenshaw County were infertile and its terrain hilly, farming was not practical in the early years. Settlers, instead, had to rely primarily on timbering. However, the Montgomery and Florida Railroad Company and the Central Georgia Railroad completed lines through Crenshaw County in 1888 and 1896, respectively, several towns were established. The town of Luverne was one of those towns. Luverne’s economy was based primarily on the business the railroad provided. Because of the railroad, a grocery store, hardware store, clothing stores, a saloon, a restaurant, a blacksmith shop, and a telegraph service were established. A hotel and a newspaper also served the patrons of the railroad and several lumber mills and grist mills also thrived. Another town that was established due to the railroad line was Glenwood, which was created in 1896 and its businesses included a bank, several sawmills, several stores, a school, and a cotton gin. In the rural parts of Crenshaw County, most settlers relied on the timber industry for their income. The addition of the railroads allowed the various lumber mills to ship their products throughout the United States.
Each fall Luverne boasts an annual festival known as the “World’s Largest Peanut Boil.” And Luverne also claims itself as the “Friendliest City in the South.”
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