Carrollton is the county seat of Pickens County. It has a mayor/city council form of government.
Carrollton was founded on 80 acres of land given to Pickens County by the federal government in 1830 to establish a county seat, land formerly occupied by the Choctaws. The town was named after Charles Carroll of Maryland, the last surviving signer of the Declaration of Independence, and was officially incorporated on January 15, 1831. The first county courthouse was burned by Union troops during the Civil War, and the second in 1876, by arson. It was replaced with a new structure in 1877 that was used until 1994, when a new facility was built. The old courthouse building still stands.
Carrollton’s population at the time of the 2010 Census was 3,489. Of that number, 87.0 percent identified themselves as white, 9.9 as African American, 10.4 percent as Hispanic, 4.2 percent as two or more races, and 0.1 percent as Native American. The city's median household income was $30,192, and per capita income was $14,791.
The workforce in present-day Carrollton is divided among the following occupational categories:
· Educational services, and health care and social assistance (38.0 percent)
· Manufacturing (17.5 percent)
· Construction (8.6 percent)
· Other services, except public administration (7.1 percent)
· Transportation and warehousing and utilities (6.8 percent)
· Retail trade (5.9 percent)
· Finance, insurance, and real estate, rental, and leasing (5.0 percent)
· Public administration (4.2 percent)
· Professional, scientific, management, and administrative and waste management services (2.4 percent)
· Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and extractive (1.5 percent)
· Arts, entertainment, recreation, and accommodation and food services (1.5 percent)
· Wholesale trade (0.4 percent)
Schools in Carrollton are part of the Pickens County School District; the city has approximately 500 students and 42 teachers in two schools (elementary and high school). It also has one private school serving K-12 with approximately 360 students and with 21 teachers.
Carrollton is intersected by State Highways 17 (north-south) and 86 (east-west).
Events and Places of Interest
The historic Pickens County Courthouse is located in Carrollton. Local legend states that the face of Henry Wells, arrested for burning down the second county courthouse in 1876, was etched by lightning in a window pane of the courthouse. A new play based on the legend is scheduled to premiere in Carrollton in 2010.
Clanahan, J. F. The History of Pickens County, Alabama, 1540-1920. Carrollton, Ala.: Clanahan Publication, 1964.
Pickens County Heritage Book Committee. The Heritage of Pickens County, Alabama. Clanton, Ala.: Heritage Publishing Consultants, 1999.
James P. Kaetz
Published March 29, 2010
Last updated May 21, 2013