As the American Civil War began to wind down, the United States Government wanted the Southern States to be settled just as quickly as they could. The Indians were being driven out and discouraged from putting up a fight. Cotton was in demand and the soil in Alabama (sandy Loam) was considered to be ideal for most types of crops. To entice settlers to come to Alabama, the government advertised the availability of cheap land at about $1.00 or $2.00 per acre, if purchased in sizable numbers. John Webb from Americus, Georgia was one of those who answered the call and relocated to the area now known as Houston County, Alabama. Some years later, one of John's son's, Benjamin Franklin (Frank) Webb homesteaded 159 acres just a few miles west of where his father lived. Later, B.F. Webb donated 110 acres of land to form a town. That town is known today as Webb, Alabama. B.F. Webb built the first house in Webb, Alabama in approximately 1890, and shortly thereafter others also began to erect homes.
In 1899, the Central of Georgia Railroad was building its road through Webb's Plantation. He negotiated with the railroad and they built a depot in the center of the little settlement after Frank Webb deeded just over 23 acres to the railroad. In the year 1900, railroad service through the town began. Just prior to incorporation, mail service to the settlement had begun on June 8, 1900. The first postmaster was Vander L. Webb, son of Frank Webb. Later, on October 31, 1903, the residents of the little settlement voted to incorporate the four mile square settlement. Streets were laid out, and the town was named after its founder. Soon, J.D. Worrell built the first store in town and Vander Webb also built a store. It had become apparent that the little town would grow, so Frank Webb laid out one-acre lots for homes. He sold them for about $15.00 each as new residents kept moving to the new town.
In 1903, Frank Webb's young son, William Cas Webb, also had an infant son who died and the town had no place to bury the child. Frank Webb stepped up again, and donated a one-acre cornfield for use as a cemetery. The corn was cleared from the land and the child was buried. That acre of land is now known as Webb Cemetery. And many of the people named thus far are sleeping the long sleep in that hallowed place. In 1909, the first school was constructed and consisted of four rooms. That building burned down in 1930 leading to the construction of a permanent school now known as Webb School. The town of Webb continued to grow, and reached its peak in approximately 1918 to 1920. At one time there were over 16 businesses to include drug stores, doctors offices, and a barber shop. The town remained viable, even though passenger train service ended in the 1950s and the depot reportedly burned down. The area where the depot stood is now a park.
Central of Georgia Locomotive
Riverboat at Columbia, AL. About 1860
Benjamin F. and Susannah Webb
W.P. Thomas Gas Station near Webb, AL. 1960s
Tyler's Grocery, Webb, Alabama About 1950
Shelby Thomas' Grocery, Webb, Alabama about 1950
I.W. Brackin First Mayor of Webb, Alabama
Johnny Mack Brown, Famous Actor From
Dothan, Alabama in the 1950s.
Shelby Thomas' Father Late 1800s.
Original Hand Water Pump at Centor of Town
Former Depot for Central of Georgia Railway in Dothan, Alabama.
Shelby Thomas' First Car. One of theFirst Cars in Webb, Alabama.
Downtown Webb, Alabama in About 1910
Farmers in Webb, Alabama Loading Watermelons in About 1920.
Main Street Webb, Alabama in About 1940.
Cas Webb With a Horse for Sale in 1945.