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Christopher Maloney, Auburn University
Haleyville is located on the border of Winston and Marion Counties in northwest Alabama, being mostly in Winston County. It has a mayor/council form of government. The town is noted as the first to implement the 9-1-1 emergency telephone system.
Haleyville City Hall
The area around Haleyville was inhabited by the Cherokee and many remained even after forced removal in the 1830s. Haleyville had been known by various names, including Wards Grist Mill, Davis Crossings or Crossroads, and The Ark; Haleyville was chosen in honor of the Haley family, which had established a large mercantile business there. The Northern Alabama Railroad constructed a line in the early 1880s linking Haleyville with Sheffield and Parrish and spurring economic development. The town was incorporated on February 28, 1889, and by that time was home to several local industries, including warehouses and a fertilizer plant as well as a school house, and by the early 1900s, a bank. Local residents provided labor for the nearby coal mines and supported an expanding service industry.
In more recent decades, the town has supported mobile home and textile manufacturing plants. In 1968, Haleyville became the first municipality in the United States to implement the use of the emergency telephone number 9-1-1, which was hosted at the police station and facilitated by the local provider, Alabama Telephone Company. On November 24, 2001, an F2 tornado moved through downtown Haleyville and caused substantial damage; a less severe tornado went through on April 27, 2011.
According to 2016 Census estimates, Haleyville recorded a population of 4,047. Of that number, 98.0 percent identified themselves as white, 8.8 percent as Hispanic, 1.1 percent as two or more races, 0.4 percent as black, 0.3 percent as Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander, and 0.1 percent as Asian. The median household income was $25,949 and the per capita income was $15,711.
According to 2016 Census estimates, the workforce in Haleyville was divided among the following industrial categories:
  • Manufacturing (23.5 percent)
  • Educational services, and health care and social assistance (21.9 percent)
  • Retail trade (11.2 percent)
  • Finance, insurance, real estate, and rental and leasing (8.8 percent)
  • Transportation and warehousing, and utilities (7.2 percent)
  • Construction (7.1 percent)
  • Other services, except public administration (5.5 percent)
  • Arts, entertainment, recreation, accommodation and food services (4.3 percent)
  • Professional, scientific, management, administrative, and waste management services (3.4 percent)
  • Public administration (3.0 percent)
  • Information (2.5 percent)
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and extractive (1.1 percent)
  • Wholesale trade (0.6 percent)
Haleyville Public Library
Public education in Haleyville is administered by Haleyville City Schools, which oversees one elementary school, one middle school, one high school, and one technology center that collectively serve approximately 1,725 students and employ approximately 130 educators.
Haleyville is accessed by State Highway 13, which runs north-south; State Highway 129, which enters from the south; and State Highway 195, which enters from the northeast. Posey Field, a general aviation facility, is located approximately five miles north of Haleyville. Norfolk Southern Corporation operates a rail line that runs through Haleyville city limits.
Events and Places of Interest
The Palmer-Feldman House (ca. 1902) and the Feldman Department Store (ca. 1914) are listed on the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage. Feldman's Department Store is also on the National Register of Historic Places, as is a nearby archaeological site dating back some 2,500 years. Haleyville's recreation department supports a swimming pool, ball field, tennis courts, and the 140-acre Rocky Ravine/City Lake Park, which features hiking trails, picnic facilities, fishing, and playground equipment, as well as a natural gorge. Haleyville Country Club features an 18-hole golf course. The city lies just west of the William B. Bankhead National Forest, which provides numerous outdoor activities, and to the south of Bear Creek Reservoir, which also offers many activities. Each June, the city hosts the 9-1-1 Festival to honor emergency personnel.
Published:  April 18, 2012   |   Last updated:  August 13, 2018