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Christopher Maloney, Auburn University
Reform is located in north-central Pickens County in west-central Alabama. It has a mayor/council form of government.
Reform was sparsely settled in the decades after Alabama became a state in 1819. A post office was established there in 1841. The arrival of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad in the 1890s, linking Columbus, Mississippi, with Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa County, and eventually Montgomery, Montgomery County, sparked additional growth in Reform, which lies about equidistant from these Alabama cities. Reform was incorporated on March 2, 1898, and several churches were established about this time, including the First Baptist Church and the First Presbyterian Church. The lumber industry was important in the area and that legacy has continued. Later in the twentieth century, Westinghouse Corporation operated a plant in Reform, but it was closed toward the end of that century. Several other manufacturing firms operated plants there as well. The public library opened in 1971.
According to 2016 Census estimates, Reform recorded a population of 1,763. Of that number, 50.6 percent of respondents identified themselves as African American, 44.6 percent as white, 1.8 percent as Hispanic, and 3.0 percent as two or more races. The town's median household income was $21,228, and the per capita income was $17,174.
According to 2016 Census estimates, the workforce in Reform was divided among the following industrial categories:
  • Educational services and health care and social assistance (20.4 percent)
  • Retail trade (13.9 percent)
  • Manufacturing (13.5 percent)
  • Arts, entertainment, and recreation, and accommodation and food services (11.7 percent)
  • Finance and insurance, and real estate and rental and leasing (10.9 percent)
  • Transportation and warehousing, and utilities (9.1 percent)
  • Other services, except public administration (6.3 percent)
  • Public administration (4.0 percent)
  • Construction (3.8 percent)
  • Professional, scientific, and management, and administrative and waste management services (3.6 percent)
  • Information (1.4 percent)
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and extraction (1.2 percent)
Public education in Reform is overseen by Pickens County, which administers an elementary and a high school that collectively serve approximately 750 students and employ approximately 75 educators.
Reform is accessed by U.S. Highway 82 and State Highway 6 that run east-west and State Highway 17 that runs north-south. The Alabama Southern Railroad operates a rail line through Reform. The North Pickens Airport, a general aviation facility, is located in Reform.
Events and Places of Interest
To the northwest of Reform is the Melrose Plantation (ca. 1840), which is listed on the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage.
Published:  May 15, 2013   |   Last updated:  May 20, 2013