50 Years!

This year, Arley Alabama turns 50.

Although the town has been here a long time, it wasn’t incorporated until 1965.

The map below shows us in red.

Our town boundaries look like someone scribbled their magic marker in our general area and said, “You know…like, HERE.”

650px-Winston_County_Alabama_Incorporated_and_Unincorporated_areas_Arley_Highlighted.svgThere are 356 souls living in Arley proper, but many hundreds more of us living at Arley addresses on the shores of our meandering Lake Lewis Smith.

If Arley would annex us, they would have enough people to force a vote to make Arley ‘wet’, and then we could have beer at our Mexican restaurant.

But I digress.

Arley was named for the infant son of a local Baptist Minister, who began the school in what was then Dismal Alabama.

That’s right.  Dismal.

We have a Dismal Creek emptying into the lake, and since the mail was dropped at the store in Dismal that’s what the area was called.

Luckily we got a new post office to go with the school and the school and town were named after Rev. Gibson’s deceased child, (Robert) Arley Gibson.  Arley was the 9th of 11 children, 3 of whom died in infancy.


But he left us a great name for a very cool little town surrounded on three sides by the banks of Lake Lewis Smith in rural Alabama.


Photo credit: Ryan Northrop


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