Clyde O. Mitchell, a Birmingham contractor, bid his first Alabama road job September 4th, 1913. Mr. Mitchell’s first venture in road building was in association with his brothers J.H. Mitchell and O.O. Mitchell. They operated as Mitchell Brothers, and their first job was on a road in Blount County from Blountsville toward Oneonta using slip scrapers and wheelers for grading. They built culverts out of stone masonry, and bridges with masonry piers.
Before becoming contractors, the three brothers had been active in logging and lumbering in their native Blount County; before venturing out on their own in the road building industry. They rented mules from other contractors by the hour. The three Mitchell brothers operated their company together until 1940 when Clyde sold his interest to his two brothers.
In 1941 he started his own company; Clyde O. Mitchell, and began performing grading, drainage and paving jobs. In 1958, he relocated his company from Blount County to Birmingham’s north side.
Mr. Mitchell was widely recognized as the dean of Alabama road builders. In an accident in December of 1947, Mr. Mitchell was knocked down and run over by a D-8 crawler tractor, fracturing both sides of his pelvis. Only the soft mud at the site saved his life. As testimony to the vigor and courage of the man, three and one-half months later he was back on the job.
Clyde helped in the organization of the Alabama Road Builders Association in 1947 and was the association’s second president in 1948; he also held a seat on the board of directors for numerous years.