In 1895 it was demonstrated that Alabama pig-iron could be sent to Liverpool and sold cheaper than the English product, and Birmingham (Alabama) came consequently to rank next to Middlesborough and Glasgow among the world centres of the pig-iron trade.
In 1901 the number of persons engaged in working of the raw material was 23,263, of whom 8258 were employed in steel smelting and founding, 7781 at blast furnaces in the manufacture of pig-iron, and 7224 at puddling furnaces and rolling mills.
The value of the output of iron and steel increased from $264,571,624 in 1890 to $471,228,844 in 1905, and the state furnished 46.5% of the pig-iron and 54% of the steel and malleable iron produced in the entire country.
In the coasting trade the exports are mostly pig-iron, codfish and some products of local industries and agriculture.
The Barrakur ironworks produce pig-iron, which is reported to be as good as that of Middlesbrough.