The town was named in 1904 after its founder, Eli Summer, who hoped to establish a tobacco farm in the area. A post office was established in 1905. The tobacco farm failed, but other enterprises fared better, including a turpentine distillery and a canning factory. A group of Mennonites settled in Summerdale in 1917 but did not remain. The town incorporated in January 1929.
Summerdale's population according to the 2010 Census was 862. Of that number, 86.4 percent of respondents identified themselves as white, 5.8 percent as African American, 5.1 percent as Hispanic or Latino, 3.8 percent as two or more races, 1.4 percent as Native American, and 0.1 percent as Asian. The town's median household income, according to 2010 estimates, was $42,813, and the per capita income was $23,961.
According to 2010 Census estimates, the work force in Summerdale was divided among the following industrial categories:
· Transportation and warehousing and utilities (14.0 percent)
· Arts, entertainment, recreation, and accommodation and food services (14.0 percent)
· Professional, scientific, management, and administrative and waste management services (12.6 percent)
· Other services, except public administration (12.0 percent)
· Manufacturing (10.6 percent)
· Educational services, and health care and social assistance (9.0 percent)
· Construction (8.0 percent)
· Retail trade (8.0 percent)
· Wholesale trade (5.0 percent)
· Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and extractive (3.7 percent)
· Finance, insurance, and real estate, rental, and leasing (3.3 percent)
Schools in Summerdale are part of the Baldwin County school system; the town has approximately 475 students and 31 teachers in one K-7 school.
State Highway 59 runs north-south through town, and County Road 32 bisects the town east-west. The Foley Municipal airport is approximately five miles south of the city.
Events and Places of Interest
Summerdale has a children's splash park, and a community center that has space to rent for meetings and events. The Summerdale
Museum and Archives is located in the Summerdale community center. The Spear Hunting Museum, founded by well-known spear hunter
Gene Morris, is located on State Highway 59 in Summerdale.
Baldwin County Heritage Book Committee. The Heritage of Baldwin County, Alabama. Clanton, Ala.: Heritage Publishing Consultants, Inc., 2001.
James P. Kaetz
Published February 18, 2013
Last updated February 18, 2013