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The Birmingham Vulcan

Birmingham, AL is home to the largest cast iron statue in the world – Vulcan. Vulcan (Roman God of the Forge) was created in Birmingham to represent the city as a powerhouse in iron and steel manufacturing. He was first seen at the 1904 World’s Fair in St. Louis where he won first prize at the Palace of Minds and Metallurgy. It was then returned to Birmingham. Final resting place – very uncertain. For eighteen months, the statue sat disassembled on Red Mountain. In 1906 he was finally pieced together for a temporary exhibit at the state fair. This temporary exhibit, with some pieces incorrectly assembled, remained on the display for 30 years. Following his state fair exhibit, the statue was moved to the top of a hundred foot tower on Red Mountain. In 1971, the park was “modernized” adding a visitor center, observation tower, and a marble facade that covered the existing tower. Vulcan deteriorated over time, and the site was closed in 1999. The statue was disassembled, fortified, and in 2003 finally restored to its original sandstone tower.

Vulcan atop his sandstone tower

Vulcan atop his sandstone tower

Vulcan

Vulcan Tower Base

Tower Base

Vulcan's view of Birmingham

Vulcan’s view of Birmingham

About Taylor Lasseigne

Taylor Lasseigne has written 87 post(s) for Slices of America.

Taylor Lasseigne – Slices of America Webmaster / I was born and raised in the south Louisiana coastal parish of Lafourche. There, I was exposed to the good Cajun people, a bounty of amazing foods, an easygoing way of life, and a lush “sportsman’s paradise” where I first learned to appreciate nature. From a young age, I always showed interest in music. In my college years, after percolating through several state schools, I took a position as a high school music teacher in New Orleans. While music education is my calling, photography has always been a fun escape for me. I enjoy peering through a lens to document our world, and I hope that I can continue to share this pastime with others through Slices of America. / e-mail: taylor at slicesofamerica.com

  • Marco Balducci

    Nice! We evacuated to B’ham during Isaac and were pleasantly surprised. Beautiful landscape and interesting history–and lots of things for kids. Vulcan was a big hit with our son–and me! Thanks for sharing–love to you and to the fam.