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Archive for the ‘Alabama’ Category

Who knows What it Looked Like?

Posted by Heliocentrism on July 28, 2010

July 14, 2010

All Pictures

My nephew thinks he’s cool. 🙂

Let’s Reconstruct it

To tell the truth, the history of Fort Toulouse in Wetumpka, Alabama is not as interesting as the history of the reconstruction of the Fort. The Fort itself was built some time in 1717 and used by the French to ward off the British. It’s the same old good verses bad story. Here French equals good and British equals bad, I think. It’s hard to tell…

The Fort was abandoned by the French when the British showed them what’s what. The French ran off to New Orleans where they started a tradition of bead collecting and public intoxication. The British had no real interest in this Alabaman fort once the French were gone and left it to rot.

Who can get through that?

In the 1800’s the fort was used by Andrew Jackson; you know, Mr. 20-dollar bill. Well… he didn’t so much use the fort, as built a bigger one over it called Fort Jackson. Mr. Jackson needed more space than the French. He planned to win his war.

In 1976 someone had the great idea of reconstructing Fort Toulouse. They looked at the outline of the fort that was there and built upon that. Unfortunately, no one bothered to check with any reputable historians on the matter, because what they had actually made was a replica of Andrew Jackson’s fort.

They did eventually tear down the replica of Jackson’s fort and build, as best they could, a replica of Fort Toulouse. They hope one day to build another replica of Jackson’s Fort somewhere in the area.

nice ride

So Much to do in Bowling Green, but not after Six

The next stop on our tour through the southern states was in a nice town called Bowling Green in the state of Kentucky. According to the TomTom there were lots of great stuff to see and do in this town, from a Corvette Museum to a distillery.

But alas, it was all for naught! For you see, our arrival was in the late hours before dust at 17:30 in the afternoon. By then everything was either closed or closing. We did manage a drive about town in which we saw the aviational spectacle you see above.

It was flown by a Brigadier General Daniel Cherry, of whom Wikipedia, as of this writing, knows nothing about. But I know he exist because I saw his plane and because he wrote a book; My  Enemy My Friend.

open air sleeping

We Don’t Need No Sinkin’ Tents!

Malcolm, Vonia, and the kids didn’t feel like unpacking the trailer to get to the tents and set them up. Nor did they feel like taking tents down and repacking them the next day. They checked the weather report. Since there was no chance of rain, they put up only their camping gazebo to sleep under.

Mark’s and my tent, is a small tent that takes about 5 minutes to put up. As I slept in my tent, I felt jealous of everyone else who was sleeping a little closer to nature. Mark on the other hand was glad he was where the  bugs couldn’t bite him.

Mark’s skin glistens with bug spray.

All Pictures


The United States of America

How to get there:

You can enter my country by land, air, or sea. But I think flight would be your transportation method of choice.

I have no clue how to get a visa to the US or who needs one. Just assume that you need one if you are not American or Canadian and check with your local US embassy.

Phone:

  • Use 911 for the police, fire department, or to get an ambulance
  • Use 411 for information (This might cost money.)

Website:

Downloads:

Videos:

Books: 

Notes:

  • It’s a big country. You’re going to need a car.

Fort Toulouse

How to get there:

  • 32°30’24.0″N 86°15’06.0″W
  • Exit on Northern Blvd. (Hwy 152, exit 173 off I-65 in Montgomery)
  • Follow Northern Blvd east to U.S. Highway 231 north towards Wetumpka.
  • Go approximately 8 miles;
  • look for the Key West Inn on the left.
  • Turn left at next red light onto Fort Toulouse Road.
  • After approximately 2.5 miles the road goes directly into Fort Toulouse.

Address:

Fort Toulouse/Jackson Park
2521 W. Fort Toulouse Road
Wetumpka, AL 36093

Phone:

  • (334) 567-3002

Website:

E-mail:

Cost:

  • $2.00 Adults
  • $1.00 for students and children 6 and over
  • Free for children under 5 and under.

Hours:

  • Open sunrise to sunset

KOA
(Bowling Green)

How to get there:

  • 36°55’02.0″N 86°26’10.1″W
  • From I-65 Exit 22, north on US 231,
  • left onto KY 884 at light #12.
  • 1.8 miles on left.

Address:

1960 Three Springs Rd
Bowling Green KY 42104

Phone:

  • (270) 843-1919

Website

Download:

e-mail:

  • bgkoamail@yahoo.com

Notes:

  • This site comes with free wi-fi.

Map:

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Posted in Alabama, Bowling Green, Kentucky, United States, The, Wetumpka | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Let Freedom Ring

Posted by Heliocentrism on July 28, 2010

July 13, 2010 Night

All Pictures

Rosa Parks being booked

Life in a Southern Town

If you’ve ever read any books or watched any movies about the American south during the early 20th century you know that it was a bit behind the times when it came to racial equality. I mean, even more so than the rest of the country. People of color were not treated as real people and had very few rights.

When I think of Montgomery, Alabama I think of a place where the Civil Rights Movement started, grew, and spread through the country. I think of Rosa Parks who didn’t give up her seat to a white person on a cold December day.

As a kid I’d always wondered what she was thinking or how she felt. Was she scared, angry, a little of both? Did her hands shake like mine do when I’m afraid or nervous because I’m standing up for myself? Did working for the NAACP give her courage or did she work for the NAACP because she had courage already?

She was not the first to refuse to give up her seat and move to the back of the bus, but she was the one chosen to be put in the spot light. She was thought of as an up-standing citizen, so she was picked to be the poster child of the civil rights movement. She was someone decent who could be pointed to and have said of her, “How can we let this happen to a good person like her?”

Rosa’s bus

The Montgomery Bus Boycott

This little act of Ms. Parks resulted in a boycott of the public buses in Montgomery by the black citizens. Most of the bus users were black so they had the power, financially, in this struggle.  However, it still took over a year for blacks, who paid the same fare as everyone else, to be allowed to take a seat wherever they chose.

scorched earth

A Place Where People Demand Change

In 1861 eleven southern states, including Alabama, had had enough of the United States of America. They weren’t going to be told what to do by some Yankee president. They left the US and declared themselves a new country called The Confederate States of America. Unfortunately for the non-white residents of the new country, the main reason for the secession was so that the whites could enslave them.

Montgomery was the first place chosen for the capital of the new country, which didn’t last long according the southerners. It didn’t exist at all according to the northerners. Since the north won the war, they get the last say.

Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church

In 1886 Montgomery became the first US city with a bona fide electrical street car. This caused Montgomery to be one of the first US cities with suburbs. Imagine that!

Less than half a century after that, in 1955, Montgomery saw more changes in the start of the Civil Rights Movement. It grew out of the basement of the Dexter Ave church right down the block from the state’s own capital building.

This movement went a long way in helping African-Americans to become equal in the eyes of white America. Today organizations like the NAACP champion the civil rights of blacks and anyone whose civil liberties are being impeded.

united in marching

In 1965 when black American citizens tried to register to vote, they were turned away for bogus reasons. People in support of voter’s rights for blacks, and all US citizens, marched from Selma, Alabama to Montgomery. They marched peacefully to show that good people would not just sit back and silently watch injustice take control of their country.

I am grateful to all those who marched.

All Pictures


 

The United States of America

How to get there:

You can enter my country by land, air, or sea. But I think flight would be your transportation method of choice.

I have no clue how to get a visa to the US or who needs one. Just assume that you need one if you are not American or Canadian and check with your local US embassy.

Phone:

  • Use 911 for the police, fire department, or to get an ambulance
  • Use 411 for information (This might cost money.)

Website:

Downloads:

Videos:

Books: 

Notes:

  • It’s a big country. You’re going to need a car.

Alabama State Capitol

How to get there:

  • 32°22’39.6″N 86°18’02.7″W
  • Take exit 1, I-85,
  • turn north on Union Street.
  • Continue 1/2 mile.
  • The Capitol is on the left after Washington Avenue.

Address:

600 Dexter Avenue,
Montgomery, AL36104

Phone:

  • (334) 242-3935

Website

Cost:

  • Free

Hours:

  • M-Sa 9:00 – 16:00
  • Closed state holidays

The First White House of the Confederacy

How to get there:

  • 32°22’34.2″N 86°17’59.8″W

-Going 1-85 South (from Atlanta),

  • take exit #1/Union St. and turn right onto So. Union toward State Capitol.
  • Go 0.7 mi. and turn left onto Washington.

-Going from I -65 either from Mobile or Birmingham

  • turn onto I-85 North; take exit #1/Court St.
  • take an immediate left onto Arba St.
  • Go to Union,
  • turn left,
  • go 0.7 mi
  • turn left on Washington.

It’s the house on the corner of Union and Washington. The handicap entrance is on Union side.

Address:

644 Washington Ave.
Montgomery, AL 36130-3012

Phone:

  • 334-242-1861

Website

Cost:

  • I don’t know, but I doubt it’s free.

Hours:

  • M–F 8–16:30.
  • Closed weekends and state holidays

How to get there:

  • 32°22’34.7″N 86°18’11.8″W

Address:

400 Washington Ave.
Montgomery, AL 36104

Phone:

  • 334-956-8200

Website

Cost:

  • 2 USD Adult
  • Kids enter for free

Hours:

  • M-F 9:00 – 16:30
  • Sa 10:00 – 16:00

How to get there:

  • 32°22’38.2″N 86°18’09.8″W

Address:

454 Dexter Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36104

Phone:

  • (334) 263-3970

Website

Downloads:

Hours

  • Tues – Fri 10:00 – 16:00
  • Sat 10:00 – 14:00

Notes:

  • You can take a tour of the Parsonage for a fee.
  • The Parsonage is a few blocks away from the church.
  • Since this is still a functioning church, you can also go on Sunday, for  free, during services.

Map:

Posted in Alabama, Montgomery, United States, The | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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