Tuscaloosa, Alabama, the seat of Tuscaloosa County. It is on the Black Warrior River, about 50 miles (80 km) southwest of Birmingham. Tuscaloosa is a river port and industrial center, producing pipe, rubber products, lumber, and chemicals. The University of Alabama was established in Tuscaloosa in 1831. Stillman College was founded in 1876 as a Presbyterian school for blacks.
Tuscaloosa was founded in 1816. It was named for Tuscaloosa (meaning “Black Warrior”), an Indian chief who led several tribes into battle against Hernando de Soto's expedition in 1540. Many pre-Civil War homes reflect the prosperity of the city during its years as the state capital, 1826–46.