Historically, The Semmes Community was founded around the railroad and was incorporated in 1900. The City was named for Admiral Raphael Semmes, an Officer in the United States Navy and Confederate States Navy.
On August 17, 2010, Semmes became Alabama's 461st municipality. Semmes has the lowest city general Sales Tax in Mobile County at 2.5%. There is no City Property Tax for Landowners.
These days, Semmes is best known for its large number of nurseries. These nurseries produce many ornamental shrubs, with the most popular being the Azalea. Azaleas grown in Semmes are sold throughout the United States. Locally owned nurseries have added greatly to the charm and character of the City of Semmes.