Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Sweet Home Alabama

Tuesday, May 29 - Another new state for me.  Headed to Montgomery. Another small town we made a quick stop in is Demopolis (which means "city of the people").  Most noteworthy in Demopolis is a mansion called Gainsworth, which was called by the Smithsonian Historic Guide to America as one of the top three antebellum mansions in America.  Definitely worth a stop.  

Unfortunately, the hours published in the guidebook were out of date, and they closed about a 1/2 hour before we got there.  Bummer, since it still has the original interior finishings and furniture.

Side note:  We've been behind several big trucks hauling logs today.  It feels a little precarious following this...

The next quick stop was Selma, Alabama, best known as the home of the civil rights marches of 1965.  It also has one of the few intact antebellum business districts, spared in an attack on the town's factories for weapons and ammunition near the end of the Civil War in 1865.  One of those buildings is the St. James Hotel, which has been restored.

Selma was the home of "Bloody Sunday", March 7, 1965, which was when police officers attacked peaceful civil rights demonstrators on the Edmund Pettus Bridge as they were attempting to march to the state capital, Montgomery. After this occurred, President Johnson said:

"At times history and fate meet at a single time in a single place to shape a turning point in man's unending search for freedom. So it was at Lexington and Concord. So it was a century ago at Appomattox. So it was last week in Selma, Alabama."

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