Baldwin County was created by the Mississippi Territorial legislature on 1809 Dec. 21, from territory taken from Washington County. Its size was altered several times before 1868, when it received its present dimensions. Baldwin County lies in the southwestern part of the state. It is bounded on the north by Clarke and Monroe Counties, on the east by Escambia County, AL, and Escambia County, FL, on the west by Clarke, Washington, and Mobile counties, and Mobile Bay, and on the south by the Gulf of Mexico. Baldwin County encompasses 1,590 square miles. It was named for Abraham Baldwin, a distinguished citizen of Georgia. MacIntosh Bluff, Blakeley and Daphne each served for a time as county seat before 1901, when Bay Minette was so designated. Other towns and communities include: Bon Secour, Elberta, Fairhope, Foley, Lillian, Loxley, Perdido Beach, Point Clear, Robertsdale, Summerdale, Orange Beach and Gulf Shores.
Two separate areas in Baldwin County have been designated "Outstanding Alabama Water" by the Alabama Environmental Management Commission which oversees the Alabama Department of Environmental Management. As of April, 2007, only two other areas in Alabama have received what is the "highest environmental status" in the state. A portion of Wolf Bay and 42 miles of the Tensaw River in northern Baldwin county have received the designation. Officials believe the "pristine water" will become an important eco-tourism destination.
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