Founded in 1886 on 600 acres of land, East Birmingham was the agricultural area consisting primarily of dairy farms extending to the present Birmingham airport. The East Birmingham Land Company that developed the area was formed by local industrialist who proposed sites for manufacturing plants, employee housing , and a streetcar line linking them to Birmingham. East Birmingham was annexed to the city in 1910.
In the decades after 1886, Industrial enterprises and working-class housing sprang up on terrain crisscrossed by railroad lines and intersected by village creek. Plants made patterns, stoves, lumber bricks, steam engines, and foundry and machined products. Early companies still in existence include Hardy-Tines (1895). Stockham (1903). McWane (1922). Stewart Machine (1905). and O'Neal (1923). Residents and industrial drank from Village creek and used it's waters to grow crops and cool machinery.
Early housing subdivisions included Klondyke (1902), Lincoln City (1903), and Greenwood (1903), where many of the homes were owner occupied. An influx of rural Southerners bringing their hopes for a better life to the great industrial city of Birmingham generated housing booms in 1913-15 and 1924-28. East Birmingham became a working-class neighborhood whose streets were graced with a diversity of housing types seldom seen in other industrial communities.
Through the years, the East Birmingham community has been challenged by noise from the Birmingham airport, construction of an interstate highway, and the seasonal flooding of Village Creek, all of which led to the demolition of a great number of early houses. Yet, the East Birmingham neighborhood remains. This marker is erected in the longtime commercial district along 10th Avenue North, to commemorate the working men and women who founded East Birmingham.