Emelle is a small town in rural
County, Alabama. The
town is located at the
intersection of Alabama highway 17 and county
road 24 approximately 65 miles southwest of Tuscaloosa
Alabama and 45 miles northeast of Meridian
Mississippi. Emelle is located in the heart of the
Belt region in western Alabama. The region is
called the Black Belt because of its black soil and
because it was the center of
Alabama’s cotton plantation economy before the
Civil War. Sumter
County was the major
in the state of Alabama
in the late 19th century.
One tradition says the community was named after Emma and
Ella Dial, daughters of a local landowner.
Another says it was named for Emelle
Dial, whose father provided land to the railroad. Emelle was established in 1912
with the completion of the AT&N Railroad.
Joseph Dial donated the land for the
right-of-way, provided the town would be named in honor his two daughters, Emma
and Ella. The town was not incorporated until 1981.
According to the 2000 Census, the population
was 31; however, formal surveys and assessment by the Mayor and Town Council of Emelle document a population of 154. There are 57 residential homes, 4
businesses, 1 Post Office, 1 Volunteer Fire Station, 4 area churches and 1 City
Hall. The Volunteer Fire department is responsible for fire protection in
of Emelle and
Over 900 people come from out of town to Emelle each year.
County Store, an antique store, serves as the
hub of the community on weekends, attracting more than 50 customers to town each
week. The Willingham Family Reunion and The JGR Family
Reunion are yearly events
that bring in the majority of out of town guest to the Town of Emelle. These events are
looked forward to each spring/summer. These guests contribute to the financial
well being of the town by the extra dollars spent.
The residents love their community and believe that they
live longer in rural areas like Emelle; Emelle is often described as “one of a