Birmingham - USA, Alabama

Located in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Birmingham is Alabama's largest city. From nearby Port Birmingham a canal and then the Black Warrior River leads southward to join the rest of the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway near Demopolis. Few achievements in the past half century compare to the American Civil Rights Movement. The Birmingham Civil Rights District is a six block tribute to the part played by the city in this movement and includes the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, Kelly Ingram Park and Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. The Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame honours great jazz artists with ties to the state of Alabama. Other attractions include Vulcan Park - Located on top of Red Mountain with spectacular panoramic views of the city and home to the world's largest cast iron statue, the McWane Center, Birmingham Museum of Art (Renaissance), Arlington House (1842) - a restored antebellum home and Birmingham Zoo. Though Birmingham stands in the heart of the Deep South, it is not an Old South city. Founded in 1871 at the crossing of two railroad lines, the city blossomed through the early 1900s as it rapidly became the South's foremost industrial centre. Iron and steel production were a natural for Birmingham; underground lay abundant key ingredients - coal, iron ore and limestone. As an industry town, Birmingham suffered greatly in the Depression. After World War II the city grew moderately while retaining its strong Southern character and has diversified into medical and engineering industries.