1932 was the 61st year after the founding of the City of Birmingham.
- January 12: Lightning caused a fire which destroyed the upper floor of the Walker County Courthouse.
- March 6–10: All banks were closed by order of President Franklin Roosevelt.
- March 21: The massive 1932 tornado outbreak killed 268, injured 1,874, and destroyed 7,000 homes and businesses in Alabama alone.
- June 7: The first Birmingham Civic Symphonic Orchestra performed at Phillips High School.
- July 13: The result of the 1932 Sunday sports referendum was 2-1 in favor of relaxing Blue Laws for spectator sports.
- November 24: Louis Pizitz served 5,000 Thanksgiving meals to the needy at his downtown store.
- The Birmingham Aero Club organized a National Air Carnival at the Birmingham Municipal Airport.
- The Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Company's company-owned schools were turned over the the Jefferson County School System.
- West End Park was renamed for sailor Kelly Ingram.
- First Lutheran Church defaulted on their purchase of a lot at Cotton Avenue and McConnell Street.
- The Birmingham Philatelic Society was founded.
- Erskine Ramsay High School was accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
- Pelham First Baptist Church was reorganized.
- The last building standing in New Birmingham, Texas was demolished for highway construction.
- Sidney Smyer helped found the Alabama Economy League.
- February 23-26: The Periclean Club held a "Negro Authors Week", which opened with a reading by Harlem poet Langston Hughes at First Congregational Christian Church.
- Joe Bruno opened Bruno's Bros. Grocery.
- Ben Mazer founded Mazer Lumber and Supply.
- Floral Park Bakery was renamed Marsh Bakery.
- Parisian department store was forced into receivership.
- Ben and L. A. Stein of Jacksonville, Florida reopened the Lyric Theatre as a movie house.
- WAPI-AM reorganized as a private company under W. O. Pape.
- The Bank of Alabama (Ensley) was liquidated under the control of the First National Bank of Birmingham.
- Bess Fortenberry purchased the Irondale Cafe.
- Asa Rountree Jr founded the Industrial Publishing Company.
- Newman Waters Sr founded the Waters Theater Company.
- WBRC-AM opened a studio in the Bankhead Hotel.
- The Simon Hubig Co. closed its Birmingham bakery.
- Robin Wade Sr founded the R. A. Wade Co.
- Cully Cobb sold his Atlanta, Georgia-based magazine, The Southern Ruralist, to The Progressive Farmer.
- The 10th Congressional District of Alabama was vacated.
- 1932 general election
- W. C. Bryant succeeded Charles Rice as Mayor of Homewood
- Pitcher Ivy Andrews was traded from the New York Yankees to the Boston Red Sox.
- Stuffy Stewart played his last season with the Tyler (Texas) Sports.
- July 16: Satchel Paige pitched his first no-hitter in the Negro Leagues.
- September 17: Bob Adams played his final game with the Philadelphia Phillies.
- December 6: Boxer Izzy Jannazzo made his professional debut in a loss to Willie Miller.
- December 9: Thirteen universities, including the University of Alabama and Auburn University, split from the Southern Conference to form the Southeastern Conference.
- Thomas V. Neal succeeded John C. Dawson as president of Howard College.
- William Alexander succeeded William Dobyns as pastor of South Highland Presbyterian Church.
- M. L. Allen succeeded Red Cunningham as chief of the Homewood Police Department.
- Dud and Paul Bascomb joined the Bama State Collegians at Alabama State Teachers' School.
- Cliff Hare was appointed Alabama State Chemist.
- Brunetta C. Hill became principal of Graymont Colored School.
- Sidney van Sheck was hired as an applied arts instructor at the Alabama Polytechnic Institute.
- Cartoonist Hubert Harper rejoined the Birmingham Age-Herald staff.
- J. Stewart French succeeded W. R. Hendrix as pastor of Highlands United Methodist Church.
- Lee Roberson was called to lead Temple Baptist Church in Greenbriar, Tennessee.
- Tat Bailey enlisted in the U.S. Navy
- January 1: Joe Langston, long-time WBRC-TV news director
- January 11: Harry Mabry, long-time WBRC-TV news director
- January 31: Frank Barker, founding pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church.
- February 7: Gay Talese, author
- February 8: Raymond Boland, Catholic bishop
- March 14: Johnny Mack Gore, country musician
- March 20: Jerry Levin, journalist and peace activist
- March 31: Alvin Hudson, Heart of Dixie Railroad Club co-founder
- April 10: George Atkins, professional football player
- April 17: J. B. Elliott, Weather Forecast Office Birmingham forecaster
- May 18: Walter Anglin, disc jockey
- May 18: Sammy Salvo, pop singer
- May 26: Dolly Brumfeld, professional baseball player
- July 12: Otis Davis, Olympic gold medalist
- July 16: Charles Gratton, Green Acres Cafe founder
- July 30: Stanley Mackin, Regions Bank CEO
- September 18: Bob Harmon, racing promoter
- October 3: Neal Miller, radio and television host
- October 15: Red Farmer, race car driver
- August 25: Dan Holliman, biologist
- November 1: Jim Pyburn, baseball player and football coach
- November 5: Lewis White, radio personality and educator
- November 27: John E. Jones, organizer of the Shelby County Fair
- December 15: John Lee Armstrong, football coach
- December 19: Odessa Woolfolk, educator and public policy professional
- December 31: George Schlatter, television producer
- William Bridgers, founding dean of the UAB School of Public Health
- John C. Fletcher Jr, biomedical ethicist
- Lola Hendricks, Civil Rights activist
- George Kirchoff, inventor of the automobile airbag
- Billy Thompson, Shelby County Coroner and County Commissioner
- Bob Truett, Birmingham Zoo director
- Glynn West, manager of the Birmingham A's
- Marian Woods, educator and librarian
- Tommy Wrenn, dental technician and Civil Rights historian
- March 1: Wallace Rayfield married widow Bessie Fulwood Rogers.
- November 19: William Hoover married the former Helen Gould Carnes.
- John and Carol Weld divorced.
- Emory Jackson earned a bachelor's degree at Morehouse College.
- Shug Jordan graduated from Auburn University.
- Hugh Stubbins earned a bachelor's degree at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
- Bob Waldrop graduated from high school.
- April 2: Mattie Sue Percy drove off a bridge.
- April 28: Engineer and postmaster Truman Aldrich died.
- Architect William Weston
- Joseph Zoettl began work on the Ave Maria Grotto in Cullman.
- "The Boss", photograph by P. H. Polk.
- No Surrender, a novel by Emma Gelders Sterne
- Jefferson County Courthouse at Woodrow Wilson Park
- A second building for Holy Innocents Hospital was constructed.
- The Fairgrounds Raceway oval was reduced from 1 mile to 1/2 mile.
- F. W. Woolworth store, Tuscaloosa
- A new frame lunch room was constructed at Jones Valley High School.
- Montclair Road was constructed.
- Nectar Bridge over Locust Fork in Blount County was built.
- The Wood Wade building at 1st Avenue South and 14th Street was completed.
- Boogie-woogie pianist Jabo Williams signed with Paramount Records.
- Brunswick Records re-released several of Lucille Bogan's blues recordings under the name "Bessie Jackson".
1932 was a leap year in the height of the Great Depression, with the Dow Jones Industrial Index bottoming out at 41.22 in May. The 1932 Winter Olympics were held in Lake Placid, New York and the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles, California. Charles Lindbergh's son was kidnapped and murdered. Jack Benny debuted on radio and Johnny Weismuller appeared for the first time as Tarzan. The "Bonus Army" of World War I veterans marched on Washington. The United States passed its first gasoline tax. Positrons and neutrons were discovered. Soviet agricultural policies resulted in unprecedented famine. Babe Ruth made his famous "called shot" in game 3 of the 1932 World Series. Franklin D. Roosevelt defeated incumbent Herbert Hoover in a landslide. A Christmas Day earthquake in in China killed 70,000 people. Radio City Music Hall opened in New York. The first Mars bars and Zippo lighters were sold.
1932 saw the births of actors Omar Sharif, Pat Morita, Peter O'Toole and Liz Taylor, authors Umberto Eco and John Updyke, primatologist Dian Fossey, poet Sylvia Plath, composer John Williams, singers Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline and Loretta Lynn, pianist Glenn Gould, radio host Casey Kasem, boxer Sonny Liston, and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Deaths in 1932 included those of gum tycoon William Wrigley, bandleader John Philip Sousa, inventor George Eastman, and poet Hart Crane.
Literature of 1932 included Erskine Caldwell's Tobacco Road, 1919 by John Dos Passos, William Faulkner's Light in August, and Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. Top grossing films included "Shanghai Express", "A Farewell to Arms", and "Grand Hotel", which won the Academy Award for Best Picture. Colgate, Michigan and USC claimed national titles in college football. Jack Sharkey won the World Heavyweight Championship by defeating Max Schmeling. Gene Sarazen won the U.S. Open and British Open in golf and was named the Associated Press male athlete of the year. Burgoo King won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes.
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