Click to Home

Go To Search
RSSPrintEmailFacebookTwitter
Helena
Main Street Helena
Helena is located in northwest Shelby County approximately 20 miles south of Birmingham. Helena was once a thriving center of steel production and coal mining. In recent years, the building of a modern waste water system, newly annexed land west of the city toward the Cahaba River and beyond, the building of an industrial park and a huge demand for housing has boosted construction in Helena. Stemming from the spill-over growth branching southward from Birmingham, the new construction signals another period of rapid economic and economic growth.

Post office records from 1849 refer to the town of Cove, thought to be little more than a crossroads stage stop. The name changed to Hillsboro in 1856. During this time, a highly productive rolling mill was built to manufacture material for the confederate war effort. Classified as "top secret", it continued to operate throughout the civil war, and near the end of the war in 1865, federal troops known as “Wilson’s Raiders” razed the plant, burning it to the ground. During the reconstruction period following the war, the railroads began contributing to the growth in the area. One of the more well known railroads, L&N, sent an engineer name Pete Boyle to survey the land. Upon completing a new train station, he named it "Helena Station" after his sweetheart, Helen Lee, the daughter of a prominent local judge. The area around the station began to develop and grow, eventually absorbing Hillsboro and officially incorporating as the city of Helena. M.H. Williams, a railroad agent, served as the City's first mayor. Helena was a regular little metropolis by all accounts. It was during this period when the steel mill was reopened by Burwell B. Lewis, Rufus W. Cobb and others. Mr. Cobb went on to become Governor of Alabama and spent his later years as Probate Judge of Shelby County.

Helena is highly regarded as a place to live and raise children. It has the eighth lowest crime rate per population in the U.S., and the city was ranked in Money Magazine's 2007 list of "Best Places to Live: Top 100" in the U.S., placing at number 91.

The Greater Shelby County Chamber of Commerce serves the City of Helena.

 Helena Top 100 Places To Live  Helena Welcome Center



View Larger Map

Shelby County