Pell City

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City of Pell City
Pell City seal.png
Incorporated 1891
Population 13,794
Mayor Bill Pruitt
School district Pell City School System

Pell City City Council
Pell City Fire Department
Pell City Police Department

Web site
Locate with Google Maps

Pell City is the largest city in St Clair County and serves, along with Ashville, as a county seat. Pell City is located on the shores of Logan Martin Lake, created by the construction of Logan Martin Dam in 1964 to provide hydro-electric power to the central region of the state. The 2016 census estimate of Pell City's population was 13,794, a 44% increase from the 2000 census count of 9,565. The city covers an area of 27.2 square miles (9.5% of which is water).


The city was founded in 1890 by railroad investors and named after George H. Pell of the Pell City Iron and Land Company, one of its financial backers.

The city was incorporated on May 6, 1891, but it nearly completely failed during the Panic of 1893. However, it was revived in 1902 when Sumter Cogswell built the Pell City Manufacturing Company, which subsequently became Avondale Mills which until the recent growth of the city in the early 1990's was the major employer and landmark of the town. Pell City increased its size in 1956 when the nearby towns of Eden and Oak Ridge were merged with the city.

The residences of Sumter Cogswell and Green Evans (Pell City’s first mayor) are two of the earliest structures, dating from the late nineteenth century. The majority of the historic structures date from 1902 to 1905.

Ashville in the northern part of the St Clair County, was the only county seat from 1821 to 1907. A constitutional amendment in 1907 established Pell City as the second county seat. For many years, St Clair County was the only county in the country with two full-service county seats. Both county seats remain operational to this day although Pell City has far outstripped Ashville in growth thanks in no small part to the convergence of both I-20 and Logan Martin Lake.

After a period of growth in the 1980s Pell City voted to split its school system off from the county system, becoming independent. The system has over 4500 students spread across Pell City High School, Duran Junior High School, Duran South, Iola Roberts Elementary, Walter M. Kennedy Elementary, Coosa Valley Elementary, and Eden Elementary. In addition, a new 5-6 school is under construction, eventually bringing the number of campuses in the Pell City School System to eight.

Recently, Pell City has experienced a period of rapid residential and commercial growth spurred, partly, by the opening of the Honda plant in nearby Lincoln, an industrial park on its northeastern border and by a retail area on the north side of I-20 anchored by Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Cracker Barrel and the Premiere Lux Cinertainment complex opened in 2019. The 135,000 square-foot Pell City Square shopping center, anchored by Hobby Lobby, T.J. Maxx, and PetSmart, opened in 2023.

Pell City is home to WFHK-AM, St Clair County's only radio station.



As of the census of 2000, there were 9,565 people, 3,830 households, and 2,772 families residing in the city. The population density was 389.3 people per square mile. There were 4,275 housing units at an average density of 174.0/sq mi. The racial makeup of the city was 83% White and 15% Black or African American. 1.25% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 3,830 households out of which 30.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.9% were married couples living together, 12.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.6% were non-families. 24.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.9% under the age of 18, 7.5% from 18 to 24, 27.6% from 25 to 44, 25.0% from 45 to 64, and 16.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 90.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.8 males.

The median household income in the city was $48,300. About 7.5% of families and 11.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.2% of those under age 18 and 9.8% of those age 65 or over. However, these figures provide an incomplete picture of the area. Many of the affluent neighborhoods along the lake shore that are often considered part of Pell City are actually just outside the city limits in unincorporated areas. These neighborhoods constitute a sizable population and income level, but are not reflected in official city census data.

St Clair County Seal.png St Clair County

Communities | County Commission | Schools | Sheriff


Argo | Ashville (seat) | Leeds | Margaret | Moody | Odenville | Pell City (seat) | Ragland | Riverside | Springville | Steele | Trussville | Vincent


External links