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Alabama, US Description
1819 saw Alabama become the 22nd state in the Union of the United States of America. Alabama appears on the map as a rectangular shape that is elongated north-south. In the north, it shares a border with Tennessee; in the east, it has Georgia; in the west, it has the Mississippi. Mobile Bay, Alabama's southwestern corner, is the only part of the state that has access to the Gulf of Mexico from the Florida panhandle. The official state capital is Montgomery.
The state has a diverse range of landscapes to choose from. North of Knoxville, the Tennessee River's affluent valley can be found. In northeastern Alabama, the broken terrain of the southern edge of the Appalachian Mountains begins to progress southwestward through the northern half of Alabama. There is a low-lying area of prairie known as the "Black Belt" below that, where the fertile soils once supported a rural cotton-growing lifestyle crucial to the development of the state. It's a long way down the coast from here to the moss-covered oaks of Mobile and the white beaches of the Gulf.
Alabama has been the site of numerous significant crises during the continent's colonization and the nation's growth. It was a battleground for European powers vying for the lands of the New World, for conflicts between European settlers and indigenous communities, for conflicts between North and South during the American Civil War, for the civil rights movement, and other forces of economic and social change that have profoundly altered many aspects of the Deep South since the middle of the twentieth century. It's not all bad news for Alabama: There has been progress in the area of ethnic relations, such as the integration of schools and the election of African American politicians to public office. Both residents and non-residents of Alabama can agree that the state's unique way of life is deeply rooted in Southern tradition.
Geographical Description of Alabama
A 500-foot (150-meter) rise in Alabama's average elevation from sea level to the highest point of 2,407 feet (734 meters) on Cheaha Mountain in northeastern Alabama represents a dramatic change in elevation. This gradation allows for the identification of numerous relief regions.
Nearly two-thirds of the state is occupied by the state's southernmost Appalachians. The Cumberland Plateau in the north divides Tennessee from the upper branches of the Cumberland, Kentucky, and Tennessee river systems, which extend southward. The altitude rises to 550 meters in the more rugged eastern regions (1,800 feet). In the east, the Great Appalachian Valley divides the continent into two distinct halves. With an average elevation of 1,000 feet, a small triangle of the Piedmont Plateau extends across Georgia (300 metres).
Alabama's climate is mild, with an annual average temperature of 64 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius). This temperature ranges from 60 degrees Fahrenheit (16 degrees Celsius) in the northern counties to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius) in the southern counties, although summer heat is frequently mitigated by Gulf of Mexico winds. In the summer, highs of up to 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) are possible, but frosts are more common, and snowfall is possible in the northern counties. It's 79 degrees in the summer, and it's 48 degrees in the winter.
During the summer months, Alabama is particularly vulnerable to severe weather. Hurricanes Camille (1969) and Katrina (2005) were particularly devastating to coastal areas in the late summer and early fall when strong tropical storms, including hurricanes, sweep northward from the Gulf of Mexico. Tornadoes are most likely to strike the southern part of the state, which includes the northern half of the state.
Plants thrive in Alabama's mild climate, including more than a hundred varieties of trees. The northern and northeastern regions of the country are home to the vast majority of the country's dense forests. While pine trees predominate, the state's older cities and towns are graced by the presence of live oaks. It isn't just red cedar and black cypress that can be found here, but sweet gum and black walnut are also prevalent. A wide variety of shrubs and grasses, including bamboo and mistletoe, are available. Muscadine, scuppernong, and blackberry grapes also thrive in the region. Coastal woodlands are home to Spanish moss, which has a beard-like appearance.
The Perdido Key beach mouse and the Alabama beach mouse are two of North America's most endangered species, both of which can be found only in Alabama. Coyotes, armadillos, deer, feral pigs, and American alligators live in the area as well. Kites, bald eagles, and hawks fly through the air, while the Gulf Coast waterdog and the 20-inch eastern hellbender—the heaviest salamander species in North America—are found on the ground.
These plants are found only in Alabama: the carnivorous pitcher plant, Alabama gladecress and Cahaba prairie-clover are all found only in this state. One hundred species of trees are found in the state of Florida; among them are red cedars, pines, magnolias and oaks, which are often covered in Spanish moss.
It's not surprising that Alabama is known for its timber, given the state's 70% forest cover. There are so many trees in Alabama that they could cover Rhode Island and Delaware as well.
Limestone, coal, and iron ore are all abundant in Alabama, which are three of the most important raw materials used in the production of steel. In fact, three of the nation's leading pipe manufacturers are based in Alabama.
Economy of Alabama
One of the poorest states in the country, Alabama's median family income has remained below the national average for the past several decades. Rural poverty, on the other hand, distorts the state average, hiding more encouraging trends and the stronger economic foundation of urban areas. A large part of this is due to the manufacturing sector's consistent economic contribution, but the continued growth of the service sector has been an important development.