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Small Town Series: Hurtsboro, Alabama

By July 20, 2023September 27th, 2023Lifestyle, Places

Small Town Series

In my work, I am blessed to be able to travel back roads and visit charming, small towns. Maybe, I love these little communities because I grew up in a few of them. Nestled in the heart of Russell County, Alabama, lies the small and historically rich town of Hurtsboro. Founded in the early 19th century, this little community has seen the ebb and flow of time. It has experienced significant events and challenges that have shaped its identity. From early days as a railroad town to its current state as a close community, Hurtsboro stands as a testament. If you’ve seen the town on The Andy Griffith Show, you can picture what life was like for me growing up there.

Hurtsboro owes its name to its founding family, the Hines-Hurt family, who established a plantation in the area during the early 1830s. Some of you may remember when I listed this beautiful property. Hurtsboro’s history predates the American Civil War, with the arrival of the railroad in the 1850s propelling its growth and economic significance. Like many Southern towns of its time, Hurtsboro’s economy was heavily dependent on cotton farming and the railroad.


The late 19th and early 20th centuries marked a period of prosperity for Hurtsboro. The town became a growing center of commerce and social life, boasting a lively main street lined with businesses, schools, and churches. While the population has remained relatively small throughout its history, the community’s tight-knit nature and resilient spirit have always been its defining characteristics.

Hurtsboro, like many rural communities, experienced a decline in the mid-to-late 20th century as agriculture underwent modernization and urbanization lured away the younger population seeking better opportunities. The railroad quit coming through Hurtsboro, and things changed. This period of decline brought significant challenges for the town, but Hurtsboro was not to be forgotten.

Recognizing the importance of their town’s history and heritage, the locals of Hurtsboro rallied together to preserve their community’s identity. Historic buildings were restored, and efforts were made to revitalize the town’s economy through tourism and small businesses.

Currently, Hurtsboro’s state shows the challenges faced by many rural communities in America. While the population remains relatively small, the town’s locals have made strides to ensure that their community thrives. Modern services coexist with traditional values, creating a unique and appealing blend for those seeking a simpler way of life. Preserving its history and embracing change, Hurtsboro shows the strength and spirit of its residents. All of this combined makes it a favorite gem in the heart of Alabama.

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