Hurtsboro: A Historic Alabama Gem Worth Discovering

Nestled in the heart of Russell County, southeastern Alabama, Hurtsboro stands as a testament to the state's rich heritage and cultural significance. With its roots tracing back to the 19th century, the town's evolution has woven a tapestry of historical significance, creating a unique charm that beckons exploration.

Boasting a vibrant community and a small yet dynamic population, Hurtsboro's economy thrives across diverse sectors, including manufacturing, educational services, healthcare, and construction. Its educational institutions, forming part of the Russell County School District, uphold a commitment to academic excellence.

Moreover, the town's connectivity through State Highways 51 and 26, coupled with its historical landmarks listed on the National Register, positions Hurtsboro as a compelling destination for those seeking historical and cultural enrichment.

Key Takeaways

  • Hurtsboro is located in central Russell County in southeastern Alabama and has a mayor city-council form of government.
  • The town was settled later than other sections of Russell County and was established as Hurtsville in 1857.
  • Hurtsboro's zenith came in the early 1900s when two railways extended lines through the town.
  • According to 2020 Census estimates, Hurtsboro has a population of 480, with a majority identifying as black. The city's median household income is $41,528.

Location and Government

Located in central Russell County in southeastern Alabama, Hurtsboro operates under a mayor city-council form of government. This Mayor City Council system provides a structured framework for local governance, ensuring that the town's affairs are managed efficiently and accountably.

This form of governance allows for a balanced distribution of power, with the mayor serving as the chief executive and the city council acting as the legislative body, collectively making decisions that impact the community.

Situated in Russell County, Hurtsboro's governance is rooted in principles of representation and civic engagement, enabling residents to participate in the decision-making process. The location in Russell County further influences the town's administrative dynamics, as it is intricately linked to the broader regional governance framework.

Hurtsboro's governance structure reflects a commitment to upholding the town's values and fostering sustainable development within the county.


The settlement's early history in the vicinity of Hurtsboro, Alabama, reflects the establishment of a sawmill by Joel Hurt Sr. and William Marshall in 1857 near the route of the Mobile and Girard Railroad. The settlement that grew around the sawmill became known as Hurtsville.

In 1872, when it incorporated, the name was changed to Hurtsboro to avoid confusion with Huntsville.

Hurtsboro experienced significant economic growth in the early 1900s with the extension of railway lines through the town by the Central of Georgia and the Seaboard Airline. This led to the town's zenith.

As a result, Hurtsboro's founding and early economic growth are deeply intertwined with its development. This historical background has shaped the town's identity and laid the foundation for its subsequent growth and development.


Hurtsboro boasts a population of 480, as per the 2020 Census estimates, with 66.9 percent identifying as black, 32.1 percent as white, and 1.0 percent as Asian.

The city's median household income was $41,528, and per capita income was $25,373. This highlights a distinct population diversity within the area, offering a rich tapestry of cultures and backgrounds.

Despite its small size, Hurtsboro presents economic opportunities through various industrial categories. Manufacturing accounts for 24.2 percent of the workforce, followed by educational services, health care, and social assistance at 21.0 percent, and construction at 15.5 percent.

This diversity in both population and employment sectors underlines the potential for economic growth and development within the town.


Exhibiting a diverse range of employment sectors, Hurtsboro offers opportunities in various industries. The town's workforce, according to 2020 Census estimates, is divided among different industrial categories.

Manufacturing accounts for 24.2 percent of the workforce, while educational services, health care, and social assistance account for 21.0 percent. Additionally, construction and public administration make up 15.5 percent and 12.3 percent of the workforce, respectively.

This distribution of job opportunities has a significant economic impact on the town and its residents. The presence of these various employment sectors not only provides diverse career options for the population but also contributes to the overall economic stability and growth of Hurtsboro.

With such a balanced mix of industries, the town continues to thrive and provide employment opportunities for its residents.


Education in Hurtsboro is an essential aspect of the town's development and future prospects, ensuring that residents have access to necessary learning opportunities.

The schools in Hurtsboro are part of the Russell County School District, providing a quality education for the local community. With a focus on academic excellence, the Russell County School District aims to prepare students for success in higher education and the workforce.

The town is home to one elementary school, which plays a pivotal role in shaping the educational foundation of the area's youth.

The Russell County School District's commitment to providing comprehensive and diverse learning experiences underscores the importance of education in Hurtsboro's continued growth and prosperity.


With its location on State Highway 51, which runs north-southwest through the city, and State Highway 26, which runs east-west, Hurtsboro is well-connected in terms of transportation infrastructure. The town also benefits from County Road 10, running northwest, and County Road 40, running southeast. The road infrastructure plays a significant role in connecting Hurtsboro to neighboring areas. However, public transportation options are limited, with no direct access to major public transit systems. Residents primarily rely on personal vehicles for commuting. Enhancing public transportation services could improve accessibility for those without personal vehicles and reduce traffic congestion. Improvements in road infrastructure and the introduction of public transportation services could further enhance connectivity and accessibility in and around Hurtsboro.

Road Infrastructure Public Transportation
State Highway 51 Limited
State Highway 26 No direct access
County Road 10
County Road 40


The town of Hurtsboro is home to several significant historic landmarks that showcase its rich heritage and cultural importance. These landmarks offer a glimpse into the town's past and its cultural significance, attracting visitors and locals alike.

  • Joel Hurt House: This historic mansion, built by one of the town's founders, Joel Hurt Sr., provides insight into the architectural and cultural heritage of Hurtsboro.
  • Hurtsboro Historic District: This district, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, encompasses numerous well-preserved buildings that reflect the town's history and development.
  • Railway Stations: The historic railway stations, including those of the Central of Georgia and the Seaboard Airline, stand as a testament to Hurtsboro's past as a bustling transportation hub, offering a glimpse into its economic and industrial history.


In examining Hurtsboro's historic significance, it becomes evident that the town's rich heritage and cultural importance are deeply rooted in its well-preserved landmarks and storied past.

The impact on the local economy is notable, with the town's workforce being divided among various industrial categories such as manufacturing, educational services, healthcare, social assistance, construction, and public administration.

Additionally, the preservation efforts in Hurtsboro have contributed to its historical charm and appeal. The Joel Hurt House and the Hurtsboro Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, stand as testaments to the town's commitment to preserving its heritage.

These preservation efforts not only maintain the town's historical integrity but also contribute to its economic development by attracting visitors and fostering a sense of community pride.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Some Popular Annual Events or Festivals in Hurtsboro?

Annual events and local festivals in Hurtsboro attract visitors to celebrate the town's heritage and culture. Preservation efforts have helped maintain historic landmarks, such as the Joel Hurt House and the Hurtsboro Historic District, enhancing the appeal of these events.

Is There a Local Museum or Cultural Center in Hurtsboro?

Hurtsboro boasts a local museum and historic preservation efforts. The town, with a population of 480, is home to the Joel Hurt House and the Hurtsboro Historic District, both listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

What Are Some Unique Local Businesses or Shops in Hurtsboro?

Some unique local businesses in Hurtsboro include artisan shops featuring traditional crafts, a farmers market offering fresh produce, and antique stores with historical treasures. These establishments offer a glimpse into the town's rich cultural and historical heritage.

Are There Any Outdoor Recreational Activities or Parks in the Area?

Hurtsboro offers a variety of outdoor recreational activities. The town features parks and trails for hiking, biking, and picnicking. Visitors can enjoy the natural beauty of the area while engaging in physical activities.

How Has Hurtsboro Preserved Its Historic Architecture and Landmarks?

Hurtsboro has preserved its historic architecture and landmarks through dedicated preservation efforts, recognizing their architectural significance. The community's involvement has been pivotal, and the preservation has positively impacted tourism, showcasing Hurtsboro's rich history.


In conclusion, Hurtsboro, Alabama, stands as a hidden gem worth exploring. Its rich history, diverse demographics, and thriving economy contribute to its appeal. The town's historical landmarks and vibrant community make it a compelling destination for those seeking cultural enrichment. Hurtsboro's connectivity through State Highways 51 and 26 adds to its accessibility, while its educational institutions cater to the community's learning needs. Overall, Hurtsboro's unique charm and dynamic spirit make it a must-visit for history enthusiasts and cultural explorers alike.

Our Reader’s Queries

What is Hurtsboro Alabama known for?

Constructed in 1857, the Joel Hurt House has found its place on the National Register of Historic Places since August 11, 2005. The City Grill Café stands proudly as a local landmark among the venerable structures on Main Street.

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