Thursday, October 9, 2014

"Those Places" Thursday: Houston County, Alabama

Have you browsed through census documents, vital records, or city directories and wondered exactly what your relatives' hometown looked like?  Where did your loved ones live, work, and play?  For today's "Those Places" topic, I chose a very broad one...Houston County, Alabama.  The majority (possibly all?  will have to check) of my father's family lived in this area of Southeastern Alabama at some point. 

I have visited before, but only a few times...and on at least one of those trips I spent an hour or so walking, bent over at the waist, scouring a freshly plowed field for Native American artifacts.  During high school, I participated in a summer archaeology program through Fernbank Natural History Museum in Atlanta...working alongside their resident anthropologist and his team.  Identifying pottery shards and points became second nature to me.  My dream was to become an archaeologist.  Deep down, that dream never died :).  Just ask my husband.  We are within a year from moving back to Williamsburg, VA...and I always joke that wherever we live I will just "casually" have to dig a unit (I mean square foot garden) in our backyard.  Nap time will be spent digging, sifting, looking for dark spots indicating trash pits.  But I digress.

While digging through the online collection at the Alabama Department of Archives and History, I came across this folder of writing from the Alabama Writer's Project - a Works Progress Administration project.  This New Deal agency between 1936-1940 employed "actors, painters, musicians and writers...through the Federal Theater Project, the Federal Art Project and the Federal Writers’ Project" (Alabama Digital Archives). 


The folder is entitled "Folklore" and contains three fascinating stories about Houston County, Alabama.  Two of legend...one (shown above) general description.  Access the complete article HERE.

Remembering my sweaty, dusty walks through fields in Gordon near my grandparent's home.  Remembering those who lived in and cherished Southeastern Alabama before any of my blood relatives arrived. 

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