Parrish is located in central Walker County in the northeast region of the state. It has a mayor/city council form of government.


Parrish Trestle A coal mining town, Parrish was first known as Hewitt, the name assigned to the first post office established there in 1878. The community also was referred to as Jonesboro, after the first postmaster, at the same time. The post office closed in 1888, and the town was generally referred to as Hewitt thereafter.

In 1890, the Sheffield, Birmingham and Tennessee Railroad completed a rail line through the area that intersected with a branch of the Georgia Pacific Railroad. The Sheffield, Birmingham and Tennessee Railroad opened a telegraph office at the intersection in an unused boxcar. The name of the first telegraph operator was Parrish, and his name was adopted officially by the community as its name on January 1, 1891.

The town developed slowly until 1918, when coal mines began operating nearby and new residents moved to the area for the job opportunities. Parrish was incorporated in October 1922. A new school building was constructed in 1925.


According to 2020 Census estimates, Parrish recorded a population of 1,102. Of that number, 66.2 percent of respondents identified themselves as white, 25.2 percent as African American, 2.4 percent as two or more races, and 1.7 percent as Hispanic. The town’s median household income was $32,679, and the per capita income was $18,608.


According to 2020 Census estimates, the workforce in Parrish was divided among the following industrial categories:

  • Educational services and health care and social assistance (14.8 percent)
  • Construction (14.6 percent)
  • Manufacturing (14.3 percent)
  • Professional, scientific, and management, and administrative and waste management services (12.8 percent)
  • Retail trade (12.5 percent)
  • Transportation and warehousing, and utilities (8.7 percent)
  • Arts, entertainment, and recreation, and accommodation and food services (7.2 percent)
  • Public administration (5.1 percent)
  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and extraction (4.6 percent)
  • Other services, except public administration (3.3 percent)
  • Finance, insurance, and real estate, rental, and leasing (1.5 percent)
  • Information (0.5 percent)


Parrish is part of the Walker County Public Schools. The town has one high school.


Parrish is served by State Highway 269, which runs north-south through the easternmost section of the town, and County Road 20, which runs roughly east-west through the northern section of the town.

Events and Places of Interest

The town hosts a Christmas Party in December. Parrish has a public splash pad that is open to children during the summer and also maintains a Senior Citizens Center.

Further Reading

  • Dombhart, John Martin. History of Walker County: Its Towns and Its People. Thornton, Ark.: Cayce Publishing Company, 1937.
  • Walker County Heritage Book Committee. The Heritage of Walker County, Alabama. Clanton, Ala.: Heritage Publishing Consultants, 1999.

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