Huntsville has served as the unofficial capital of north Alabama since the early 19th century. Settled by John Hunt and developed by ambitious cotton planters, enterprising merchants and professionals, and tens of thousands of families looking for new opportunities in the rich farmland, Huntsville has continued to grow and prosper as 21st-century corporations and government agencies develop new technologies which make the city the middle of space and defense-related businesses in the South. The town has endured military occupation, storms, financial panics, and the constant threat of economic and social stagnation that occurred in so many communities across the South. Nevertheless Huntsville continued to redefine itself and stay applicable in regional, national, and global affairs. This positive spirit makes Huntsville a special place for residents and visitors alike. Images of America: Huntsville expects to capture the uniqueness of this city while simultaneously acknowledging some errors which have been made previously.