Alabama, the 30th largest state in the United States, has a mixed early settler history. Originally it was part of French territory but was ceded to Britain then divided between Spain and the United States before finally being annexed in full by the United States. All this took place before major settlement of the region so little remains of this diverse history in its modern culture and ethnicity.
Originally a prime agricultural state, Alabama’s economy has since diversified into a number of different sectors including aerospace, education, and heavy and manufacturing industries. Agriculture remains a significant part of the state’s economic output. The U.S. Armed Forces maintain several large bases in Alabama making them one of the state’s largest employers. The Gulf Coast beaches Alabama shares with its neighbor states are popular tourist attractions.
Alabama’s population is fairly dispersed with significant concentrations around the north-central regions and the Mobile metro in the southern tip. Alabama has numerous smaller metros, lending its population a more even distribution of population than in many agricultural states.