Early Pioneer families often migrated together to establish new settlements. These Early Settlements were often called by the family name. Allentown was a settlement that was named after the Allen Family and was a town with a church, school, blacksmith shop, store, and cemetery. The Bureau of Land Management records indicate that James M. Allen bought 163.75 acres and James G. Allen bought 160.05 acres for cash on April 24, 1820 in Mobile County, which became Allentown. Allentown was located near the area of Wulff Road and Howells Ferry Road which is now known as Semmes.
Allentown was a settlement before Mobile County had road districts or a method to collect revenue. The Acts of the general Assembly of the State of Alabama on December 4, 1888 divided Mobile County into three revenue and road districts. The districts were further divided into Precincts. The Second District precincts were Citronelle (1), Mount Vernon (2), Creola (5), Mauvilla and Chunchula (6), Albritton (7), Carver’s (8),Steeley’s Store (20).
Allentown was in the Albritton precinct.
The Register Report lists James H. as being born on Nov. 1, 1811 in South Carolina. He was the first Presbyterian Methodist Minister in Alabama. He died on December 22, 1893 and is buried in Allentown Cemetery.
On May 20, 1862, James B. Allen, homesteaded 168.62 Acres: James H. Allen, 80.8 acres; Sarah M. Whiting, and James H. Allen, 161.19.
Allen’s born in Allentown
Early roads in Alabama were along Indian trails. One such trail used by the settlers and the Indians was close to Allentown Cemetery. The story has been passed down from generation to generation that the first person buried in Allentown Cemetery was an Indian that died on the trail. No one even knew his name.
The Indians and the settlers were friendly to one another, and once a year the Indians would use this trail to travel down to the sea to get salt. They would borrow iron pots from the settlers, boil the salt water and by the process of evaporation salt was left in the pots. When returning, the pots were returned to the settlers with a portion of salt for the use of the pots. Helen Waltman Caldwell, the great granddaughter of Benjamin Howell, said “the salt looked dirty but was good salt”. Today we know this salt as sea salt. Salt was a very important product needed by early settlers and the Indians and even sometimes used for money to trade with.
All that remains of the Allentown Settlement is the Allentown Cemetery. Many descendants of the Allen's are living in the area.
Larry E Bradley
8/21/2018 05:36:07 pm
This is a very special story. I was born & Raised here next to the Airport on the N. Side. & I new Ronnie Allen. He I suppose is from these Allen's. The Story of the Indians is Especially Interesting. & The Sea Salt was as we know used as Currency exchange at the Bottle Creek Indian Mounds in The Delta. Mobile Bay -The way it was Video by the University of S. Alabama. Have talk about this. But I am Happy to know that the Settlers in my Area Got Along well with the last of the Indians in this Area.
8/14/2019 05:23:37 am
I wonder if there is any record as to where the Indian trail was located, I live on the site of Benjamin Howells homestead and Allentown cemetery is ready got here on top of me, I would like to try and locate it if possible.
Teresa Allen Bell
3/26/2021 03:41:49 am
I am a great-great granddaughter of James B Allen. My father was Lester Trawick Allen (1913-2003). My father, mother (Lossie Waltman Allen), my brother (Larry Edward Allen) and grand daughter (infant Amanda Nicole Avritt) are all buried in Allentown. All my life we would go to the cemetery several times a year to visit family graves. We would always make a trip around the whole cemetery and pick up garbage, set vases up and pull weeds. I still do that at least once a year. My father was born in Allentown, on Wolff Road. He had several siblings born there too, Lillian, Oliver, William, John, Lura, and Freida. My grandparents were John and Urlene Allen.
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