Montgomery is the state capital of Alabama, and is the county seat of Montgomery County. The city is located on the Alabama River in the Gulf Coastal Plain, and named for Richard Montgomery. As of the 2010 census, it had a population of 205,764. Montgomery is the second-largest city in Alabama, after Birmingham, and the 103rd largest in the United States. The Montgomery Metropolitan Statistical Area had an estimated population of 374,536 in 2010, the fourth largest in Alabama, and the 136th largest among United States metropolitan areas.
Montgomery was incorporated in 1819, as a merger of two towns situated along the Alabama River. It became the state capital in 1846, representing the shift of power to the south-central area with the growth of cotton as the commodity crop of the Black Belt and Mobile's rise as a mercantile port. In February 1861, Montgomery was selected as the first capital of the Confederate States of America, until the seat was moved to Richmond, Virginia.