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5 Fun Facts About October 16 In Alabama History

---Learn Every Day: AL Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history al To: 618-270-4005---

1. On October 16, 1863, Union forces under General William Rosencrans defeated the Confederate army at the Battle of Little Blue in Missouri. While this battle did not occur in Alabama, it is significant to Alabama history because Rosencrans was born in Ohio but spent much of his childhood in Alabama before attending school in Ohio and joining the military after graduation.

2. On October 16, 1875, the Alabama State Fair was opened for the first time in Montgomery. The fair has been an annual event ever since, and is a popular gathering place for Alabamians from all walks of life.

3. On October 16, 1908, construction began on the Bankhead Tunnel in Mobile, Alabama. The tunnel is named after Senator John H. Bankhead, who was instrumental in securing funding for its construction. The tunnel opened to traffic in 1941 and is still in use today.

4. On October 16, 1968, the Tom Bevill Lock and Dam on the Tennessee River near Florence, Alabama was dedicated. The lock and dam system was built to help regulate river flows and allow for navigation of river traffic. The dam was named after Congressman Tom Bevill, who was a champion of river navigation and a key advocate for the project's funding.

5. On October 16, 2006, the Birmingham Museum of Art announced its acquisition of a collection of African masks and other artwork from the estate of collector Joyce J. Van Gelder. The collection includes over 1,000 objects from more than 100 African cultures, and is one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of African art in the world. The museum's acquisition of the collection has helped to make it an important center for the study of African art and culture.
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