Mooresville is a charming village situated near the Tennessee River in Limestone County, Alabama. From the moment you arrive, you feel at home and at peace. It’s a bit like stepping back in time.
According to the village website, Mooresville’s history began in 1805 when the first settlers arrived in the area and set up homesteads on lands occupied by the Chickasaw Indians who later ceded the land to the Federal Government. Public land sales began in 1816.
At the time, Limestone County was part of the Alabama Territory. About 4500 people called this area home.
On October 15, 1818, the sixty-two residents of Mooresville petitioned the Alabama Territorial Legislature for an Act of Incorporation, which the Legislature approved within a month. Alabama would become a state one year later, which is why Mooresville villagers refer to their home as “the town older than the state.” Some of the 58 residents of the village are descendants of the original settlers.
The entire village of Mooresville is included in the National Register of Historic Places. It’s a pleasure to stroll the streets of this village and imagine what like was like in the days before Alabama was a state. Here are some of the sights you’ll see as your Explore Mooresville, Alabama.
Mooresville Church of Christ was built as a meeting house in 1854. When the Civil War came to the area, Union soldiers camped nearby and would often come into the village to search for food, horses and any supplies that could take with them. Future President of the United States, James A. Garfield, served as a Union general and preacher. He was part of the Union encampment when he received, and accepted, an invitation to preach at the church in 1863. Until recently, you could look at the Bible used by Garfield on the day he preached his sermon in Mooresville. It’s since been removed for restoration and preservation.
Mooresville’s Old Brick Church was built in 1839. The church, situated on Lauderdale Street, was owned by the Cumberland Presbyterian denomination until it was purchased by Methodists in 1898.
For a brief time it also served as a Baptist mission.
Worship services ended in the church in the 1960s which led to the United Methodist Church holding a deconsecration service and passing ownership to the town in the 1994.
In the 1870′s, the “X+Y=Z Preacher”, Constantine Blackman Sanders, was minister at the church. He was known for his ability to make predictions and help the sick. He would relate happenings in other locations while in a sleep or trance. “X+Y=Z” was the signature he signed to his writings during “sleep” sessions. You can read more about the preacher here.
The Mooresville Post Office is what brings many lovers of history to the village. It is the oldest operational post office in the state of Alabama. Built of sawmill lumber, it’s estimated that the post office was constructed after 1840. The town owns the historic structure that’s situated at the corner of Lauderdale and High Streets.
The mailboxes and office furnishings are even older than the structure. They were transferred from the original post office that had been in the town tavern. The post boxes are numbered 1-48 with some families having had the same box for several generations.
Woody Peebles, a sixth-generation resident of Mooresville, has lived on the same street for 64 years. Woody and his wife, Lyla, went on their first date over 30 years ago. They went out on a Tuesday, and by Friday night, Woody proposed. Woody and Lyla act as the Mooresville event planners, hosting events at the town’s Dance Hall.
Woody collects all kinds of antiques, signs, gasoline pumps, and items from general stores and drug stores.
There is one sign that’s a real stand out.
Woody believes it’s from a Tennessee man with a full-service business. It reads: “Ambulance Service, John Thomas, Phone 80, Funeral Director, Jackson.”
If the ambulance doesn’t cover your needs, this company has the next step covered!
Mooresville is also home to 1818 Farms. Named in honor of the year the village was settled, the working farm name may be familiar to you.
Their bath and beauty line is available in 400 stores in 40 states.
1818 Farms also hosts annual events and their pale blue, 1965 Ford F-100 makes stops and deliveries around the Tennessee Valley area.
Historic Mooresville is located one-quarter mile south of Exit 2 (Mooresville Road) on I-565, convenient to Huntsville, Athens, Decatur, Nashville and Birmingham.