List of Birmingham firsts
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This list of Birmingham firsts is drawn from Bertha Bendall Norton's 1970 book Birmingham's First Magic Century: Were You There?, with a few additions:
- First boy born in city: Richard Powell McAnally (November 11, 1871)
- First girl born in city: Mamie Morrow (fall 1871)
- First Jewish settler: Henry Simon (1871)
- First Mayor, Robert Henley (appointed by Governor Robert Lindsay)
- First Birmingham Police Department officers to die in the line of duty: On March 27, 1900 Officers George Kirkley and J. W. Adams were killed in a shootout following a robbery of the Standard Oil office.
- First Birmingham Fire Department firefighters to die in the line of duty: Gip Spruiell and E. B. Huffman were killed when the Birmingham Paper Company building on Morris Avenue collapsed on them during a pre-dawn blaze on July 3, 1905.
- First railroad: Alabama Central Railroad pulled into Birmingham around 10:00 PM on November 6, 1871
- First coke iron: 1874, by the Experimental Coke Company
- First blast furnace in the city: Alice Furnace No. 1, into blast on November 23, 1880
- First coke oven: 1880 at Alice Furnace
- First wrought iron: June 30, 1881 at the Birmingham Iron & Steel Co.
- First steel: at Henderson Steel on March 8, 1888
- First voting place: 21st Street North and 2nd Alley North
- First Jefferson County Courthouse: 21st Street and 3rd Avenue North
- First Mayor of Birmingham: Robert Henley, sworn in on December 19, 1871
- First Birmingham City Hall: 20th Street, between 1st and 2nd Avenue North
- First post office: 19th Street and 3rd Avenue North
- First public school: Powell School, 24th Street and 6th Avenue North
- First "house": William Nabers shop, built in 1869 on what became 1st Avenue North
- First elevator: Caldwell-Milner Building, 1887 (or possibly the Florence Hotel, built in 1883-1884)
- First hydraulic elevator: Steiner Building, 1890
- First "skyscraper": Woodward Building, 1902
- First grocery store: Allen's Grocery (present site of Empire Building)
- First dry goods store: F. E. Taylor's Dry Goods (20th Street and 3rd Avenue North)
- First hardware store: R. H. Roberts' (2nd Avenue North)
- First drug store: 20th Street and 3rd Avenue North
- First furniture store: 21st Street and 3rd Avenue North
- First woman-owned business: Mrs John Lunsford's millinery shop on the 200 block of 21st Street North in 1874
- First bank:
- First hotel: unknown hotel before the Relay House opened in 1871
- First public school: Powell School (1874)
- First gas service: October 1882
- First public school for non-whites: 15th Street Colored School (1883)
- First hospital: Hillman Hospital
- First telephone exchange: In the Terry Building, established May 8, 1882 with 26 subscribers.
- First air mail flight: March 24, 1925 (demonstration flight), December 1, 1928 (regular service)
- First newspaper: Birmingham Sun (formerly the Elyton Sun, published weekly in 1871, daily for a brief time in 1872)
- First successful daily newspaper: Birmingham Iron Age (1874)
- First "talkie": Newsreel of President Coolidge welcoming Charles Lindbergh to New York, played at the Ritz Theatre in 1927
- First Alabama-Auburn football game: Auburn 32, Alabama 22, on February 22, 1893 at Lakeview Park
- First parimutual horse race: The "Birmingham Inaugural Stakes" held at the Birmingham Turf Club on March 3, 1987.
- First Olympic event: Olympic soccer, 1996
- First title boxing match: Wilder vs. Molina, June 13, 2015 at Bartow Arena
- Norton, Bertha Bendall (1970) Birmingham's First Magic Century: Were You There?. Birmingham: self-published/Lakeshore Press