A little about Greenville...
Greenville is a city in Butler County, Alabama, United States. At the 2000 census, the population was 7,228. The city is the county seat of Butler County and is known as the Camellia City, the state flower of Alabama. The push to change the state flower from the goldenrod to the camellia originated in Greenville.
Greenville's original name was Fort Dale. This fortification was named for Sam Dale who fought to defend the area during the Creek Indian War. The site of Fort Dale lies on the northern end of the city on Highway 185, near Fort Dale Cemetery.
View of the Butler County Court HouseThe namesake of the county, Captain William Butler, was killed during the Creek Indian War. He is buried in the Pioneer Cemetery, which is across from the oldest church in Butler County, the First United Methodist Church of Greenville.
The downtown layout is interesting, as most small Southern towns laid out in the early nineteenth century have a central square. Greenville's downtown is bordered on one end by the Butler County Courthouse, which is at the intersection of Commerce and Conecuh Streets, with the streets forming a roundabout around the building. The appearance of the courthouse was adversely affected by the early 1970s addition of a marble Greek Revival façade, which clashes with the red brick of the remainder of the Federal style edifice. A copper dome sits upon a 75 feet tall clock tower at the front of the building.
At the other end of the downtown area is a Spanish Colonial Style train depot next to an early twentieth century masonry railroad bridge. Commerce Street dips under this bridge as it continues to the western parts of the city. The hundred-year-old buildings around the depot show signs of decay, but the depot itself is well maintained, although it is no longer used as a train stop.
The Post Office and City Hall sit nearly in the middle of downtown, on Commerce Street, across from Confederate Park. Both buildings are attractive brick buildings, built in the 1920s and 1930s in the Federal style. Confederate Park covers one block and has a life-sized statue of a Confederate soldier and a large fountain. Also near the center of downtown is The Ritz Theatre, a 1930s art deco style structure. The building is a beautiful movie theater that the Greenville Arts Council and Mrs. Roberta Gamble, a local drama teacher, saved from certain demolition in the 1980s. Most of the uptown and downtown business structures are of the neoclassic or Federal style. All of the power and communication lines are buried, giving the downtown area a cleaner look that period streetlights accent.
The city's residents were featured on the premiere episode of the ABC reality/game show series My Kind of Town, on Sunday, August 14, 2005.
Greenville has gained national attention of late because it is home to one of the premier golf courses on the Robert Trent Jones golf trail: Cambrian Ridge. The clubhouse for the golf course was built on the highest point in Butler County. Greenville is also the home of the Watermelon Jubilee, a locally popular arts and crafts exposition.