1939 was the 68th year after the founding of the City of Birmingham.
- Holy Infant of Prague Catholic Church was founded by John Bratton in the Cahaba Homestead Village housing project.
- April 13: A fire heavily damaged Odum, Bowers & White clothing store.
- May 7-17: The gala Vulcan Dedication Celebration was held to open Vulcan Park.
- July 29: Birmingham's record high temperature of 107°F was set.
- September 1: Birmingham's sister city of Hitachi, Japan was incorporated.
- Antioch Missionary Baptist Church was founded.
- The Southern Negro Youth Congress relocated its headquarters from Richmond, Virginia to Birmingham.
- January: The Bangor Cave Club was shut down.
- Pete Koutroulakis purchased Louis's Place and turned it into Pete's Famous Hot Dogs.
- Cecil Floyd founded the C. R. Floyd Company.
- The Birmingham Athletic Club sold its 10-story building to J. Will Yon of Atlanta, Georgia.
- Steel City Oldsmobile was founded.
- Walter Schoel Jr became president of the Walter Schoel Engineering Company.
- The No. 3 furnace at Thomas Furnaces was dismantled and the other two rebuilt.
- Steven Paffos and George Askas opened the New Lontos Cafe on 1st Avenue North.
- Mel Allen began broadcasting for the New York Yankees.
- Satchel Paige debuted with the Kansas City Travelers
- November 9: Auburn and Dadeville High Schools played the first game at Auburn Stadium
- Mary Anderson auditioned for the role of Scarlett in Gone With the Wind and was given a supporting role.
- Frank Bettencourt joined the Bobby Peters Orchestra.
- Harwell G. Davis succeeded Thomas V. Neal as President of Howard College.
- Frank M. Dixon succeeded Bibb Graves as Governor of Alabama.
- Blanche Evans resigned from teaching at Woodlawn High School to marry.
- Milo Carlton got his first fast-food job.
- Malcolm Dabney retired from dental practice.
- J. T. Gaines succeeded Arthur Shores as principal of Bessemer's Dunbar High School.
- Charles W. Ireland began working at the Birmingham Slag Company.
- Benny Marshall began working at The Birmingham Age-Herald.
- Geneva Mercer and Dorothea Moretti returned to the United States from Italy.
- A. H. Parker retired as principal of Industrial High School
- Harry E. Smith succeeded Fred McDuff as Jefferson County sheriff.
- Sidney Smyer was appointed general counsel to the board of the Birmingham Realty Company.
- Tom Stewart entered the United States Senate, representing Tennessee.
- Zadoc Weatherford succeeded William Bankhead in the United States House of Representatives.
- Jessie Wrenn became president of the Birmingham Baptist College.
- November 21: Frances Moore began a 75+ year career at Bromberg's.
- February 5: Former Birmingham Bulls owner John Bassett
- February 16: Football coach Jim Currier
- March 12: Soul singer Kell Osborne
- April 1: Photographer Spider Martin
- April 8: Alabama Power CEO Elmer Harris
- May 1: Bob Cain, musician and club owner
- July 2: Singer Paul Williams
- July 17: Reporter Ted Bryant
- July 28: Architect Alberto Chiesa
- August 5: Filmmaker Bob Clark
- August 8: Bassist Henry Strzelecki
- August 10: Mayor of Homewood Jim Atkinson
- August 21: Fabric artist Toni Tully
- August 25: Film director John Badham
- August 31: Jazz bassist Cleveland Eaton
- September 7: Race car driver Donnie Allison
- October 6: Lutheran pastor Charles Wagner
- October 8: Freedom Rider, educator & jewelry store owner Catherine Burks-Brooks
- October 16: Bud Moore, football player and coach
- October 20: Ron Council, public relations professional
- November 6: Pat Dye, football coach
- December 17: Eddie Kendricks, singer
- December 19: Mal Moore, University of Alabama athletic director
- Gerald Bartholow, Unity of Birmingham minister
- Tom Henderson, Center Point Mayor
- Willie Logan, artist
- Jack Mann, stage director
- Ray Mohl, historian
- Ken Owens, architect
- Duane Pontius, physicist
- Gary Sanders, sports announcer
- Doug Waits, biologist
- Audis Williams, building inspector
- Charles Brooks graduated from Andalusia High School.
- Colonel Stone Johnson graduated from Lincoln High School.
- B. Davie Napier received his master's degree from Yale University.
- January 27: Charles Whelan Jr, physician
- July 27: Charles A. Brown, associate superintendent of Birmingham City Schools
- August 11: Charles Fisher, former pastor of 16th Street Baptist Church
- August 17: A. H. Parker, former principal of Industrial High School
- November: Idyl King Sorsby, designer of the Flag of Birmingham
- December 4: Arthur Brown, surgeon
- December 26: Henry Milner, engineer and developer
- Frederick W. Bromberg, jeweler
- Woodlawn High School's auditorium mural was completed.
- Gail Patrick starred in the film Disbarred.
- The Historical Panorama of Alabama Agriculture was displayed at the Alabama State Fair.
- Works Progress Administration, Guide to Alabama
- Vulcan Park
- U.S. 31 Locust Fork Bridge
- Auto Movies No. 1 on Bessemer Super Highway in Midfield
- Hillman Hospital's 5-story outpatient clinic was dedicated.
- Redmont Garden Apartments
- St Elias Maronite Church closed briefly
- Shanghi Baptist Church
- Slossfield Community Center
- Jordan-Hare Stadium
- Erskine Hawkins' "Tuxedo Junction" was published.
- Hugh Martin arranged the score for Cole Porter's DuBarry Was a Lady.
- Lionel Hampton's "Flying Home", thought by some to be the first rock and roll recording.
1939 saw the founding of the Hewlett-Packard company. A massive earthquake killed 30,000 in Chile. New York City hosted the 1939 World's Fair. Pope Pius XII took office. Francisco Franco took control of Spain, ending the Spanish Civil War. Lou Gehrig ended his streak of 2,130 consecutive games played. Siam became Thailand. Nazi Germany invaded Poland, spurring World War II. Al Capone was released from Alcatraz. Bob Kane created Batman.
Notable films of 1939 included Gone With the Wind, The Wizard of Oz, Goodbye, Mr. Chips, and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.. Books of 1939 included John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath, Ernest Hemingway's The Snows of Kilimanjaro, James Joyce's Finnegan's Wake, Richard Llewellyn's How Green Was My Valley, and T. S. Eliot's Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats.
Notable births of 1939 included talk show host Maury Povitch, disc jockey Wolfman Jack, Prime Minister of Canada Brian Mulroney, singer Marvin Gaye, film director Francis Ford Coppola, basketball sportscaster Dick Vitale, baseball player Carl Yastrzemski, presidential assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, fashion designer Ralph Lauren, comedian John Cleese, singer Grace Slick, and singer Tina Turner. Deaths in 1939 included those of poet William Butler Yeats, Pope Pius XI, writer and critic Ford Madox Ford, painter Alfons Mucha, founding father of psychoanalysis Sigmund Freud, basketball inventor James Naismith, and Princess Louise of the United Kingdom.
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