Gulf Shores fun facts

Fun Facts

Gulf Shores & Orange Beach

  • Baldwin County is the largest of Alabama’s 67 counties and is larger than the state of Rhode Island.
  • Pirates once hid in Perdido Pass and Perdido Bay to raid ships, and they may have buried some of their treasure in Baldwin County.
  • The nickname “Pleasure Island” was suggested by Gov. Jim Folsom and was officially adopted by the Gulf Shores Lions Club in 1949.
  • Orange Beach was named after the short-lived success of locals who attempted to grow oranges, grapefruit and satsuma trees on the shores.
  • The Hurricane of 1906 deposited many minerals in the soil, making it so fertile that farmers grew sweet potatoes the size of buckets and cabbages weighing 15 to 20 pounds each.
  • Alabama boasts the largest artificial reef program in the U.S. The state currently has more than 17,000 artificial reefs off its coast.
  • Lake Shelby in Gulf State Park is believed to be one of the closest bodies of freshwater next to a body of saltwater in the world.
  • Ono Island, which was once called “Goat Island,” was purchased in 1945 for $3,000. Ono is now home to some of the destination’s most spectacular multi-million dollar homes.
  • Admiral David Farragut reportedly uttered his famous words, “Damn the torpedoes…full speed ahead,” just off the shores of Fort Morgan State Historic Site.
  • Fort Morgan was purchased for $8,000 in 1927 by the State of Alabama. The first Native American village in America to be visited by an explorer was located near the present-day site of Shellbanks Baptist Church on Fort Morgan Road in Gulf Shores.
  • A member of Hernando de Soto’s party encountered a member of the local Native American tribe “Achuse.”
  • Native American mounds in Baldwin County are said by some archaeologists to be older than the pyramids of Egypt.
  • LuLu’s at Homeport Marina, owned by Jimmy Buffett’s sister, typically hosts about 4,000 hungry patrons per summer day.
  • The Ferris wheel at The Wharf is the second tallest in the Southeast. This Italian-made structure stands at an impressive 112 feet.
The Wharf Ferris Wheel Orange Beach
Historic Fort Morgan