Background Sources for Alabama
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This entry was originally written by Robert S. Davis and Mary Bess Paluzzi for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.
A statewide guide to Alabama research is Robert S. Davis, Tracing Your Alabama Past (Jackson, Miss.: University Press of Mississippi, 2002). Additional excellent guides to local sources include Marcia K. Smith Collier, Alabama County Data and Resources (Titus, Ala.: the author, 1999), and Marilyn Davis Barefield, Researching in Alabama: A Genealogical Guide (Birmingham: Birmingham Public Library, 1998). Ralph N. Brannen’s Alabama Bibliography (Oxford, Ala.: the author, 1996) provides bibliographic sources for Alabama history.
The WPA project, “Index to Alabama Biography: An Index to Biographical Sketches of Individual Alabamians in State, Local, and to Some Extent National Collections” (Birmingham: WPA Project sponsored by the Birmingham Public Library, 1956) can assist the researcher looking for persons in Alabama in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The project indexed over 100 biographical and historical works. Some of the titles included are:
- DuBose, Joel C. Notable Men of Alabama. 2 vols. Atlanta: Southern Historical Association, 1904.
- Memorial Record of Alabama. 2 vols. Madison, Wis.: Brant & Fuller, 1893.
- Moore, Albert Burton. History of Alabama and Her People. 3 vols. Chicago: American Historical Society, 1927.
- Owen, Thomas McAdory. History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography. 4 vols. Chicago: S. J. Clark, 1921.
- Saunders, James Edwards. Early Settlers of Alabama. New Orleans: L. Graham & Sons, 1899.
The index is available in the Tutwiler Collection of the Birmingham Public Library (see Alabama Archives, Libraries, and Societies).