About Randolph County
Randolph County’s 610 square miles lie in the east central section of Alabama. The county is bounded by Cleburne County to the north, Chambers County to the south, Clay County to the west and Georgia to the east. Randolph County was created by the Alabama Legislature Dec. 18, 1832, and named in honor of James Randolph, a Virginia congressman. Randolph was one of several counties created out of the last Creek cession formulated by the Treaty of Cusseta, March 24, 1832. It lies within the Piedmont region, which extends from Alabama to Pennsylvania.
The first county seat was established in 1833 at Hedgeman Triplett’s Ferry on the west bank of the Big Tallapoosa River, about 10 miles west of Wedowee. In 1835, the county seat was moved by the commissioners to its present location in Wedowee. Wedowee is located in the center of Randolph County on a fork of the Little Tallapoosa River. It was named for an Indian chief “Wah-wah-nee” or “Wah-dow-wee,” whose village stood near the present site of the town.
Randolph County has a population of 20,312, which is 32 percent urban, 68 percent rural, 76 percent white and 24 percent black. There are 12 educational outlets in the county, including four elementary schools, two middle schools, four high schools, one technical school, and one two- year college. The majority of the Randolph population are high school graduates.
Randolph County is the home of the Ella Smith Doll or Alabama Baby. These famous dolls now sell for up to $12,500. About 10,000 dolls a year were manufactured in Randolph County at the turn of the last century.
Corn, hay, livestock, poultry and forestry are the major agricultural crops in the county. Squash, cabbage and bell pepper also are grown. . Tourist attractions include Lake Wedowee, R. L. Harris Reservoir, Ella Smith Doll Show and Flat Rock Park.
The Randolph County Extension Office has four full-time and one part-time employees. About 800 volunteers help with Extension programs. Some of the more popular Extension programs are Leadership Randolph County, 4-H Youth and Volunteer Leader Awards Program, Master Gardener Classes, Master Cattlemen Training Program, Forest in The Classroom:Classroom In The Forest, 4-H Forestry Judging, and youth livestock programs. More than 1,200 youth and 150 volunteers are involved in 4-H.