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Arbachoochee (Arbacoochee) Alabama


Arbacoochee News Article 1974

The Immigrant's and Capitalist's Guide Book to Alabama By Benjamin Franklin Riley - 1887


THIS county was created in 1866, and named in honor of General Patrick R. Cleburne, of Arkansas. Though abounding in natural resources, the county is not as fully developed as some others in the same region. Since the construction of a railroad throughout the county, giving its productions a ready outlet, it is winning to itself a thrifty population, and in many ways the merits of Cleburne are coming more and more to be recognized and appreciated. Great inducements exist in the county for capitalists and immigrants, as its mines are stored with rich ores, and its lands abound in fertility. The county has an area of 540 square miles.

Population in 1880, 10,976; population in 1890, 13,218. White, 12,437; colored, 791.

Area planted in cotton, 14,506 acres; in corn, 22,474 acres; in oats, 6,099 acres; in wheat, 3,692 acres; in tobacco, 73 acres. Cotton Production—5,389 bales.

Cleburne has a varied surface. In the northern end of the county there are rugged hills and mountains, with intervening valleys of fertility. These valley lands are of a reddish hue, as is true of most of the lands of this character, in this and the northern portion of Alabama. The lands which lie along the ridges are of a light, grayish color. But few of the mountain lands have ever been cultivated, as the residents of the county have never felt the necessity of leaving the level for the higher districts.

Along the slopes, however, there are good farming lands with yellow subsoil. The remainder of the county is covered with either red or gray lands, except in the creek and river bottoms, where the soil partakes largely of sand. In the western portion of the county there is a sparcer population than in any other section, because the lands are regarded as the least fertile. Cleburne has many fertile valleys, which are mostly devoted to the production of corn, though some cotton is planted. Along these valley stretches are some of the best farms in the county. The lower portion of Cleburne abounds in red fertile lands.

The productions are corn, cotton, wheat and oats, with minor crops of great importance. The soils are admirably suited to the production of apples and peaches. The clovers and grasses are found to thrive with great readiness, and hence, stock-raising is gradually receiving more attention. The county has many forests of excellent timber, the chief growth of which are white, red and Spanish oaks, short and long-leaf pine, walnut, hickory and gum. For many years a gold mine has been successfully worked at Arbachoochee. The same ore is also found near Hightower. In different parts of the county copper, mica, slate, graphites, pyrites, zinc and kaolin, are found prevailing. Iron deposits also exist. Silver has also been discovered. These await capital in order to be properly developed.

The supplies of water in every portion of Cleburne are unfailing, as it is penetrated by such streams as the Tallapoosa River, and Terrapin, Muscadine, Cane, Shoal, Cahulga, Chulafinnee, Dying and Lost Creeks. All these are sustained by numerous tributaries, which contribute further to the supply of water.

The places of greatest importance are Edwardsville, the county seat, Heflin, Arbachoochee and Chulafinnee.

At Edwardsville there is a High School of local note, and at Heflin there is an Institute, both of which are well conducted and handsomely sustained. Other good schools are found in different parts of the county.

The channels of transportation are, the Georgia Pacific Railroad, and the East and West Railroad—the former a magnificent thoroughfare, giving an outlet to each of the cities of Anniston and Atlanta.

The Alabama Land and Mineral Company own about 40,000 acres of land in Cleburne, which can be purchased at remarkably low figures. Besides these, there is a great deal of government land in the county still untaken, there being 21,740 acres. Lands can be purchased from resident owners for from $2 to $10 per acre.

Link to the Lenore Martin Collection:

Coordinates: 33º 34'41''N, 85º 31'12'' W

Further Reading:

A Preliminary Report on the Upper Gold Belt of Alabama, in the Counties of Cleburne, Randolph, Clay, Talladega, Elmore, Coosa, and Tallapoosa

Geological Survey of Alabama Bulletin No. 40: Gold Deposits of Alabama and Occurrences of Copper, Pyrite, Arsenic and Tin, 1930, Reprinted 1968