1880 was the ninth year after the founding of the City of Birmingham.
- 16th Street Baptist Church bought the property of its current site.
- Linn's Crossing Cemetery and Graham Cemetery were established.
- Payne Institute was established.
- Pleasant Sabine Baptist Church in Bibb County was founded.
- June 10: Edwards Furnace was blown in.
- November 23: Alice Furnace No. 1 was blown in.
- A. O. Lane became editor of the Birmingham Iron Age.
- Samuel Greene began practicing law in Jasper.
- T. L. Hudgins founded T. L. Hudgins & Co., a private banking house.
- Sisters Bertha and Estella Sommers founded the Parisian Dry Goods & Millinery Company.
- James Van Hoose went to work for the J. M. Maxwell and Company wholesale grocers.
- The Woodward Iron Company began operations in the Birmingham District.
- The Birmingham Arms & Cycle Co. was founded.
- Samuel Tate founded the Birmingham Coal and Iron Company.
- George Harris founded the Harris Transfer Company.
- Rufus Cobb was re-elected Governor of Alabama.
- Thomas Jeffers was re-elected Mayor of Birmingham.
- Andrew Tarrant was elected tax assessor for Jefferson County.
- Mining engineer John Henry Adams came to Birmingham.
- F. W. Beall became Chief of the Birmingham Police Department.
- Brother Bryan entered the University of North Carolina.
- Chemist William Caldwell came to Birmingham.
- Robert A. Morris joined the Alabama National Guard.
- Physician Charles Whelan moved to Birmingham.
- May 6: William Simmons, founder of the 2nd Ku Klux Klan
- July 25: Lloyd Noland, physician and public health advocate
- October 9: John Henley, Jr, publisher
- John A. Carroll, furniture store owner
- Simon Goldstein, department store owner
- Franklin Glass achieved his master's degree at Princeton University.
- John Phillips graduated Marietta College in Marietta, Ohio, with a bachelor of arts.
In 1880, Wabash, Indiana became the first electrically lit city in the world. France annexed Tahiti. James Garfield defeated Winfield S. Hancock in the presidential election. Australian bushranger and bank robber Ned Kelly was hanged. The First Boer War began.
Notable books published in 1880 included The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace, and Nana by Emile Zola. Notable music composed in 1880 included "Sailing, Sailing" by Godfrey Marks, Symphony No. 6 in D major, op. 60 by Antonín Dvořák, and 1812 Overture by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.
Notable births included army general Douglas MacArthur, actor W.C. Fields, spokeswoman Helen Keller, journalist H. L. Mencken, sculptor Jacob Epstein, and Secretary of State George Marshall. Notable deaths included novelist Lydia Maria Child, composer Jacques Offenbach, and writer Mary Anne Evans (a.k.a. George Eliot).
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