A Look at the Struggling Neighborhoods of Birmingham’s West Side

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There’s a misconception about Birmingham’s industrial history. Many believe the epicenter of the city’s revolution hovered around Sloss Furnaces, but it actually began on the west side in Pratt City. Communities like Ensley, West End and Fairfield were commercial hubs during the industrial heyday of the late 1800s and early 1900s. But, as Cody Owens from the weekly newspaper Weld reports, those days are long gone and some west side communities now struggle to pay their bills. Owens starts by looking back at a once booming metropolis, Ensley, and when the economic decline of the west side began.

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