Town of Wilton

205-665-​2021





A little history:

Present-day Wilton had a long history with the iron, coal and railroad industries.  The area around Wilton had been settled prior to statehood in 1819.  The town that arose was first known as Woodsborough by settlers that came from the Carolinas.  The first iron in the county was  made at a local forge.  

An Alabama and Tennessee River Railroad line was established through the location in 1853; it became known as Woods by 1856 and then Junction in the 1870's.  Railroads hauled away coal that was mined in the nearby settlement of Aldrich.  When the Selma, Roam and Dalton Railroad and the Brierfield, Blocton and Birmingham Railroad connectors came through around 1890, the town became known as Birmingham Junction.  A post office was established in 1892 and telegraph service soon after.  The railroads prompted the construction of at least one large repair facility that late moved to Selma.  The town was described as bustling with general stores and hotels until area coal mines shut down and the repair shop closed.  

In the 1890's the town came to be called Bismarck after the first chancellor of Imperial Germany, Otto von Bismark, but the name was abandoned during World War 1 and the town became known as Catoosa.  The city was incorporated in 1918 as Wilton and is commonly believed to be named after a city in England, which was also a railroad center. At some point the first Town Hall burned down and all records were destroyed.  A new stone-sided municipal hall was constructed in 1934 by the New Deal Civil Works Administration program, was renovated in the 1970's and still stands.  Prompted by the drought in the 1930's, a pump station and a water storage tank were constructed, providing Wilton residents with water service in 1937.

Written by Christopher Maloney, Auburn University


The Town Hall is still located in the 2 story rock building mention above.  The utility department (water and Gas) is also operated from Town Hall.   Not much changes in Wilton now it seems.  Wilton still has a railroad (Norfolk Southern) running straight through the middle of town.  There is a park located behind Town Hall.  Residents describe Wilton as being a quiet, slow paced area to live which is very desirable to some.