Vertical Files Download PDF

Formally designated "Public Information Subject Files," the vertical files include several series of subject-specific collections compiled by ADAH staff for reference use from 1901 to the present. Sometimes referred to as "Clipping Files," these also may include correspondence with Archives staff, historical sketches, programs, pamphlets—in short, almost any type of information on a subject collected by or donated to the ADAH since its inception.

General Files
About 59 cubic feet on Alabama-related topics from "Abortion" to "Zip code," arranged alphabetically.
County Files
About 102 cubic feet on county-specific topics such as towns, history, churches, schools, etc.; arranged by county for each of Alabama's 67 counties (plus Baker, Benton, and Elk Counties, which no longer exist) and then alphabetically by folder topic. The quantity of material varies considerably from county to county, with Montgomery County (home site of ADAH) especially well documented.
Alabamians at War Files
About 37 cubic feet on Alabamians' participation in various American wars, including the American Revolution, War of 1812, Creek War of 1813-1814, Seminole Wars, Creek War or 1836, Texas Revolution, Mexican War, Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, Korean War, and Vietnam War. The files are arranged chronologically and then alphabetically by folder topic. They are particularly valuable for World War I information since ADAH director Thomas M. Owen actively documented the state's contribution to the war effort in a period before there was a National Archives. Included in the WWI section are the Gold Star files, which were compiled to honor Alabamians who lost their lives in that conflict.
Civil War and Reconstruction Files
About 20 cubic feet on Alabama and her citizens' roles in the American Civil War and, to a lesser extent Reconstruction periods; arranged alphabetically by topics, which include arms and arsenals, biographies, campaigns and battles, cemeteries, hospitals, and medical care, prisons and prisoners, veterans and patriotic organizations, and the role of women.
Governors Files
About 60 cubic feet on Alabama's governors from 1819 through 1983; arranged chronologically with the bulk of information on modern governors, particularly James E. Folsom (1947-1951, 1955-1959), Lurleen B. Wallace (1967-1968), and George C. Wallace (1963-1967, 1971-1979).
Frances M. Hails Files
About 11 cubic feet on a wide variety of topics of interest to ADAH staff member Frances M. Hails (circa 1923-1955); arranged alphabetically by topic and especially strong on women's issues, organizations, inventions and inventors, and the World Wars.
Surname Files
664 reels of 16mm microfilm and about 7 cubic feet of paper files on Alabama citizens, circa 1910s to the present. The bulk of material dating from the 1940s through the 1970s includes newspaper clippings and family/personal history material arranged alphabetically by surname, then given name. Material collected from 1982 to 2005 is available on