DeKalb County, Alabama

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DeKalb County is a county of the U.S. state of Alabama. Its name is in honor of Major General Baron Johan DeKalb. As of 2000 its population was 64,452. Its county seat is Fort Payne.



DeKalb County was created by the Alabama legislature on January 9, 1836, from land ceded to the Federal government by the Cherokee Nation. It was named for Major General Baron Johann de Kalb, a hero of the American Revolution. [1]

DeKalb County was the one time home of the famous Cherokee Sequoyah.

The county's eastern edge, along the state line, was also the epicenter of a strong earthquake on April 29, 2003, measuring 4.6 on the Richter scale. Power was knocked out in the area, mirrors and pictures thrown to the floor, foundations cracked, and one chimney fell to the ground. It was felt over a significant portion of the southeastern states, including quite strongly in northeastern Alabama and neighboring northwestern Georgia, and nearby eastern Tennessee (especially near Chattanooga). It was also felt slightly in western upstate South Carolina, far west-southwestern North Carolina, south and southeastern Kentucky, and east-northeastern Mississippi.

(See: 2003 Alabama earthquake)

On the whole, DeKalb County is a dry county. In 2005, a change in local laws enabled Fort Payne to become the only location in the county to allow the legal sale of alcohol.[1]


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