The Alabama Territorial Legislature established
Marengo County in 1818. The "Town of Marengo" was
then surveyed near the center of the county to serve as
county seat. In 1824 lots were sold, and early French
immigrants named the town Hohenlinden for Napoleon’s
victory in Bavaria in 1800. Everyday usage shortened
the name to Linden.
Lodging houses, stores, homes and churches
surrounded a two-story log courthouse built in 1827.
While courts were in session, the town became so rowdy
that it earned the unofficial name of "Screamersville."
During the 1840’s Linden had 160 residents, a wooden
jail, two small stores and a barbershop. In 1848 the log
courthouse burned, and the brick, federal style
courthouse was built on the main thoroughfare of
Cahaba Avenue. A stagecoach regularly passed through
town en route from Mobile to Huntsville. "The Linden
Jeffersonian" newspaper began publication in 1853;
"The Democrat Reporter" weekly newspaper has served
the surrounding area since 1879. The City of Linden,
incorporated May 1, 1870, remained the county seat
except for a few months during Reconstruction. Citizens
witnessed a gun fight between Deputy Sheriff Jeff
"Dixie" Carter and notorious train robber Rube Burrows
in front of the courthouse in 1890.
The Louisville and Nashville Railroad track, nine-tenths
of a mile south of "old town," was completed in 1902. A
"new town" grew near the depot as businesses relocated
to serve railroad customers.
Linden’s "middle town" grew near a Gothic style
courthouse constructed in 1903 at the corner of Main
Street and Coats Avenue. That courthouse with its
chiming clock tower was destroyed by fire and replaced
in 1968 by a new structure built on the same site. This
area continues to be the Linden Downtown Business
District, and center for county government services into
the twenty-first century.
"The History of Linden"
~Provided by the Linden Historical Society
* Ralph Abernathy, civil rights leader
* Roy Rogers, professional basketball player and coach
* Lucy Hannah, fourth oldest person, oldest American at
her death, second oldest American, and oldest verified
*William J. Alston, United States Representative to the
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