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Evergreen is the third county seat of Justice for Conecuh County; with Hampden Ridge and Sparta claiming as the first two. Evergreen is located in the central part of the county on the old L & N Railroad, US 31 & US 84 Highways. The village was founded circa 1819 when James Cosey, a Revolutionary War Veteran, settled along with George Andrews, and the Cluff brothers, within the present limits of the city on South Main Street. The village was first known as “Cosey’s Old Field” and later called “Evergreen” by Rev. Alexander Travis, the name suggested by the natural abundance of green foliage.
Richard Shipp was one of the first settlers to arrive here from Georgia circa 1818. He owned most of the land where the present town of Evergreen is located, and lived in a log hut on Shipp Street which was eventually named for him. Most all the land in our small village was planted by Mr. Shipp until 1857, when o thers began to buy up lots in and around the town. During the earlier years of our village, all the business houses of the village were situated on or along Main Street. It wasn’t until 1859 when successful operations were commenced on the Montgomery & Pensacola Railroad that the town was moved further south to where the present commercial district is today.
The first academy was established in 1839, and with the academy as the center of the town, Evergreen was first incorporated one mile square in 1840. The first religious meetings within the village were held beneath brush arbors, the first church house was built by the Methodist Society in 1840, near the Academy on the South side. The first physician came to Evergreen from Virginia in 1840, and others followed. The first store/post office in Evergreen was established in 1855 between Evergreen and Belleville, Extending from Belleville to the Old Stockton Stage Road. The railroad was completed in April 1861.
One of the most unique industries for Evergreen was the shipping of Evergreens and Smilax , by Caldwell, the Woodsman Company. This company put Evergreen ‘on the map’ with the decoration of the White House for the Inauguration of President Grover Cleveland; and the city motto became “Evergreen Decorates America.”