Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-10-2009, 06:50 PM
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Ohio
Posts: 10,416
How did Alabama get screwed on its coastline?

Looking at a map, it should seem that Alabama should have a lot more coastline that it has. It only has a little bit of coastline around Mobile.

At first I assumed it was because Florida became a state before Alabama, and Florida gobbled up as much coastline as it could. But then I learned Alabama was admitted to the union 26 years before Florida. So why didn't Alabama insist on a full coastline? It's not like Florida would be screwed out of any coastline once it became a state, as Florida would be guaranteed to have lots of coastline anyway.
Old 02-10-2009, 07:30 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,279
Prior to any question of statehood (and indeed, prior to ownership of the land by the US), the entire coastline that would come to belong to Mississippi and Alabama was part of Florida. When the US made the Louisiana Purchase, they claimed the lands that they called West Florida (roughly that which would become part of the other two states mentioned) were part of that deal. The Spanish disputed that claim, but by 1810 or 1812, the US presence was strong enough to hold the territory. It wasn't until the Adams-Onis Treaty of 1819 (taking effect in 1821) that the US took control of the East Florida -- roughly the territory that would become the state of Florida.

So, really, it was Florida that screwed out of coastline, not Alabama.
Old 02-10-2009, 07:48 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Leavenworth, KS
Posts: 3,229
FTR, Alabama would not accept statehood until it had a coastline. Florida had designed before the British took control in 1763. The Brits split it in two, East and West Florida. So, Alabama never had a claim to the coast, and Florida gave up some in the real estate shuffles in the early years of the American Colonies.

Don't ask me to explain how Mississippi got such a small coastline, however.

SSG Schwartz
Army Strong!!!
Old 02-10-2009, 09:31 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Apr 1999
Posts: 22,196
Alabama's coastline includes Mobile Bay, and in the 18th/19th centuries a bay and harbor was a lot more valuable than a long stretch of beach.
Old 02-10-2009, 11:38 PM
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 10,138
Originally Posted by SSG Schwartz View Post
Don't ask me to explain how Mississippi got such a small coastline, however.
Alabama and Mississippi together formed the Mississippi Territory. The Mississippi Territory was basically the northern and southern boundaries of Georgia extended to the Mississippi River, plus some coastal territory wrested from Spanish Florida during the War of 1812.

When the time came to give the Mississippi Territory statehood, Congress decided to split it in half so that the two new states would be closer in size to Georgia, their neighbor. They divided the coastline roughly equally, giving both of the two new states that little tab at the bottom.

Cite: How the States Got Their Shapes by Mark Stein.

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:17 PM.

Copyright © 2017
Best Topics: sucking teen non fantasy rpg christopher nance website volley of arrows guaifenesin vs dextromethorphan alberti popaj boyfriend donkey shows real hootenanny songs poop weight 3 course meal marcel ledbetter mormon threesome motorcycle outrun cop casterated men 20 decibels kosher dill black locust pods dom deluise gay cutler oz dui message boards laptop frames pool bar rules insulating mail slot six legged spider funny battle cry butters song nicolo bussotti salting the land condom masturbating what vsop means rossa kay chevy tracker seat belt stuck how do they choose where the super bowl is held sex surrogate boston ma rubber band ball for sale i have a headache this big does poop taste good wal mart tire brands how to fix salty gravy how to fold a cardboard box bottom fish wrapped in newspaper finger turned white and numb how long does it take for a blood blister to go away parcel select vs first class styptic stick for shaving cuts how to tell if a guy has had sex recently where should you wear your pants how long does it take amoxicillin to work max level mount and blade warband how to list multiple jobs with the same description ksp how close can you get to the sun down by law meaning flour sugar eggs butter cinnamon what does white truffle taste like cheech and chong best movie lesion on kidney ct scan great wall of fire ether to knock someone out how to remove old polish from shoes can you put water in a car battery brown hair vs black hair if you double major do you get two degrees best racist white jokes how long does it take to choke someone to death