The town of South Vinemont (or simply Vinemont, as it is often referred to) was located near the Louisville and Nashville Railroad at one of the highest points in the state: 1,100 feet above sea level. The towns original name was Pinnacle, in honor of its lofty perch. Settlers began to arrive in 1871, with Joseph Fromhold being the first in the area. The first post office opened in 1887.
Farmers who followed discovered that the soil was ideal for growing grapes, and soon several wineries were established. In January 1898, a group of Chicago businessmen formed the Alabama Vineyard and Winery Company, and settlers from Chicago followed in large numbers. The town adopted the name Vinemont later that year. A hotel was built around 1900 to accommodate visitors who came for the mountain air, and the Vinemont Canning and Processing Company also opened that year. The wine industry did not flourish, however, and today little remains of the vineyards except for those vines cultivated for home use.
Vinemont was incorporated in 1961; however, when town representatives delivered its incorporation paperwork to the state capital, they were informed that the name "Vinemont" was taken already. They chose the name South Vinemont.
The town recently began installing a complete sewage system. South Vinemont's fire station is rated a Class 3 station, a designation that only eight percent of fire stations nationwide have attained.
South Vinemont's population according to the 2010 Census was 749. Of that number, 83.2 percent of respondents identified themselves as white, 23.6 percent as Hispanic or Latino, 2.0 percent as Asian 1.2 percent as Native American, 0.5 percent as two or more races, and 0.1 percent as African American. The towns median household income, according to 2010 estimates, was $28,472, and the per capita income was $14,537.
According to 2010 Census estimates, the work force in South Vinemont was divided among the following industrial categories:
· Retail trade (21.7 percent)
· Educational services, and health care and social assistance (17.2 percent)
· Manufacturing (16.5 percent)
· Professional, scientific, management, and administrative and waste management services (16.5 percent)
· Arts, entertainment, recreation, and accommodation and food services (11.0 percent)
· Public administration (6.1 percent)
· Other services, except public administration (5.8 percent)
· Wholesale trade (3.6 percent)
· Transportation and warehousing and utilities (1.6 percent)
Schools in South Vinemont are part of the Cullman County school system; the town has approximately 1,185 students and 68 teachers in one elementary school, one middle school, and one high school.
U.S. Highway 31 bisects South Vinemont running north-south, connecting the town with Interstate Highway 65 less than a mile west of town.
Events and Places of Interest
South Vinemont has opened the first phase of a new sports complex consisting of two baseball fields; when finished, the complex will have five fields.
The Battleground School and the Heitmueller Farm are both listed on the Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage.
Jones, Margaret Jean. Combing Cullman County. Cullman, Ala.: Modernistic Printers, Inc., 1972.
James P. Kaetz
Published May 21, 2013
Last updated May 22, 2013