About Birmingham

 

Welcome to Birmingham! 

The Home of Highlands College.

 

Birmingham is the largest metropolitan city in Alabama, with a population of over 1 million. Birmingham is thriving now more than ever because of its diverse city with a rich history and strong community. 

 

 

HISTORY 

Founded in 1871, post-civil war, Birmingham was and is the only place in the world where all the ingredients needed to produce iron and steel — coal, limestone, and iron ore – are located. Due to the increasing demand for these resources, the rapid growth of its iron & steel industry was inevitable. Birmingham exploded so quickly that it coined the name “The Magic City” because it appeared to have happened “like magic” overnight. Places like the Vulcan Statue and Sloss Furnaces still stand as modern-day time capsules & national historical landmarks to capture Birmingham’s importance in its heyday. 

Birmingham also played a vital role in The Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. Birmingham natives and pastors Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth & Martin Luther King Jr. were crucial figures in the movement. They dedicated their lives to social justice, racial equality, and freedom for the oppressed. From the Birmingham- Shuttlesworth International Airport to the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, these are just a few places across the city dedicated to honoring them and their legacy. 

 

 

 “Birmingham is and has always been a city for builders, from steel mills to start-ups. We are as strong as the steel that built our economy as we move forward to create better ways to live, work, and play for our residents & visitors.” 

        -Mayor Randall L. Woodfin

 

 

 

BHAM NOW

 

– The Vulcan Statue was created to represent Birmingham in the 1904 World’s Fair and is the loftiest cast iron statue in the world, second in size to the Statue of Liberty. The statue sits on top of Red Mountain, overlooking the city. 

 

– The Church of the Highlands was founded by Pastor and Chancellor of Highlands College, Chris Hodges, in 2001. Highlands now has 23 locations across the state of Alabama & Georgia and 19 Alabama correctional facilities. They exist to help people Love God, Find Freedom, Discover Their Purpose, and Make a Difference.

 

– Food. ​When people think of the South, they may think of barbecue and biscuits, but Birmingham has so much more to offer in the food world. Some even call it “the Oscars of dining,” from classic southern cuisine to fine French dining to global integrations,” with James Beard Foundation award winners and nominees. 

 

– The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. Located in the Civil Rights District across from the 16th Street Baptist Church, the museum takes you on a journey with moving images and historical relics to learn about the people who fought for social justice.  

 

– The Barber Motorsports Park is home to the most extensive collection of vintage and modern motorcycles, with over 1,400 bikes on display. 

 

– Rickwood Field is the Nation’s Oldest Baseball Stadium. It opened in 1910 and hosted players such as Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, Ty Cobb, Willie Mays, and many more. 

 

– #26 nationally ranked leader in urban green spaces. Thousands of wooded acres for biking and hiking are within minutes of the downtown area in parks.

 

– Red Mountain Park is a 1200-acre green space that is one of the biggest parks in the U.S. and is 40% bigger than N.Y.’s Central Park. It’s favored among locals and visitors to taste southern green spaces. 

 

– The Alabama Theater is a fully operating 1920’s era movie theater, with showings each weekend and weekdays.  

 

– Home of the 2022 World Games. The World Games is an 11-day international multi-sport event organized with the support of the International Olympic Committee. Over 3,600 elite athletes from more than 100 countries will compete for gold in more than 30 of the fastest-growing sports in the world like break dancing, speed skating, and sumo wrestling. 

 

Birmingham, founded on abundance and favor, is a city for dreamers, innovators, creators, leaders… the list goes on. It has seen great victory and great sorrow over the years. No matter what the past has looked like, Birmingham is healing and being restored in numerous ways and continues to prove its resiliency. Highlands College is so thankful to call “Birmingham the beautiful” home and honored to have the opportunity to integrate each incoming class into this community and continually serve its people. 

Learn More about how our Highlands College students stay involved in our community.

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