By the name of “Cahaba” this county was established by an act passed Feb. 12, 1818,
out of territory originally taken from Monroe. The name was changed by an act passed Dec. 4, 1820,
thereby to honor Dr. Wm. W. Bibb, the first governor, an account of whom is given in the chapter on
Autauga. Bibb as at first formed included the greater part of Baker and about half of the present Shelby,
but it was soon changed.
Bibb lies near the centre of the State, south of Tuscaloosa and Shelby, west of Baker and Shelby, north of Perry, and east of Hale and Tuskaloosa.
Its area is about 640 square miles.
The improved farm lands in 1870 embraced 24,575 acres, the unimproved 91,824 acres, and the cash value of all was $295,110.
The live stock in 1870 was valued at $147,466, and consisted of 519 horses, 383 mules, 3467 neat cattle, 2981 sheep, and 3460 hogs.
The productions of the county in 1869 were 82,920 bushels of Indian corn, 6826 bushøls of wheat, 13,645 bushels of oats, 14,906 bushels of potatoes, 7395 pounds of butter, 3973 bales of cotton, and 3934 pounds of wool; while the value of animals slaughtered was $30,598; and that of all farm productions was $273,777.
The population is thus given by the federal census:
The formation of Baker caused the decrease between the last named years.
The Cahaba river, for which it was first named, bisects the county, but is not navigable. The Selma and Rome railroad passes through the eastern portion for fourteen miles; the A1abama and Chattanooga railroad skirts the northwest border, and the projected railway from Mobile to Elyton is surveyed through it.
Iron ore is abundant, and the Briarfield Iron Works were of great service during the late war.
Inexhaustible beds of coal exist, the measures being in frequent instances exposed on the surface of the earth. Blue lime and marble are also plentiful.
Indeed, few counties of the State may boast of equal material resources.
There was a flourishing cotton factory at Scottsville, but it was burned by Gen. McCook's raid in 1865.
CENTREVILLE, the seat of justice, has about 300 inhabitants; Randolph has about 200.
It was during the closing days of the late war that the clank of sabres disturbed the solitudes of north Bibb. It was Croxton on his mission of destruction to the colleges and factories of Tuskaloosa. He encamped near the edge of the county, eight or nine miles north of Scottsville, the night of March 31, 1865. He had encountered the videttes of Jackson's division of Forrest's cavalry that evening, and, at daylight the next morning, he began to move out of camp and push rapidly northward, with the intention of flanking his adversary, who he thought would move on to Selma. Just as he was breaking camp, a spirited charge of Jackson's troops on his rear hastened the movement. Croxton lost several killed, about thirty prisoners, several stands of colors, 150 horses, and his papers. The affair was greatly magnified at the time by the hopeful people of Alabama, yet it delayed but a day the devastation on the banks of the Tuskaloosa.
EDWARD HAWTHORN MOREN, a leading citizen of this county, was born in Dinwiddie county, Virginia, in 1825. His father, a merchant and farmer, was several times a member of the senate of Virginia. His mother was a Miss Crawford of Maryland. Graduating at a medical college in New York, he entered the United States army as an assistant surgeon. He served in that capacity during the Mexican war, but resigned in 1848. In 1853 he settled in Bibb, and for ten years devoted himself to his profession. In 1861 he was chosen to represent Perry and Bibb in the upper house of the general assembly, and was reelected in 1865, both times without opposition. In 1861 he went into the army as surgeon of the 29th Alabama, and was subsquently in charge of a hospital in Greenville. In 1870 he was elected lieutenant governor, and now holds the position. Dr. Moren is portly and impressive in figure, with a grave but kind manner. His talents are substantial and not showy, and he possesses nerve, energy, moral worth, and practical sense. He married a daughter of Hon. Sam'l W. Davidson, of this county.
In 1821 the general assembly selected Henry W. Stephens, Agrippa Atkinson, and Ansel Sawyer to choose a site for a courthouse.
Littlepage Sims was a delegate from Bibb to the constitutional convention of 1819; James W. Crawford to that of 1861, and Jackson Gardner to that of 1865.
The following is a list of members of the general assembly from the county:
1821-Charles A. Dennis.
1834-David R. Boyd.
1840-Daniel E. Watrous.
1843-Daniel E. Watrous.
1847-James M. Nabors.
1849-Daniel E. Watrous.
1853-Jack F. Cocke.
1857-Jack F. Cocke.
1861-Edward H. Moren.
1865-Edward H. Moren.
[No election in 1867 or since.]
1822-Jonathan Jones, Jno. Wallace.
1823-Charles A. Dennis, Alex. Hill.
1824-Jonathan Jones, Alex. Hill.
1827-James B. Clark.
1828-James B. Clark, Alex. Hill.
1829-Jas. B. Clark, Jonathan Jones.
1830-Jas. B. Clark, David R. Boyd.
1831-D. R. Boyd, Julius Goodwin.
1832-James W. Davis, John B. Summers.
1833-James W. Davis, John B. Summers.
1834-David E. Davis, Hopkins Pratt.
1835-David E. Davis, Robt. Parker.
1836-John Williams, Wm. Christian.
1837-James W. Davis, Robt. Parker.
1838-John E. Summers, L. Kennedy.
1839-John Williams, Fred'k James.
1840-David E. Davis, S. W. Davidson.
1841-Dav. E. Davis, Ezekiel Henry.
1842-Pleasant Hill, - Morrison.
1843-Pleasant Hill, David E. Davis.
1844-R. Morrison, B. L. Dufreese.
1847-James W. Davis.
1849-O. S. Quinn.
1851-James W. Davis.
1853-Jas. W. Davis, Chas. P. Findley.
1855-E. H. Beernard, J.W. Crawford.
1859-S. W. Davidson, jr.
1861-Henry D. Calhoun.
1863-J. W. Davis.
1865-James W. Davis.
1870-T. J. Smitherman.