Home

The Black Belt Connection

The Black Belt Connection July/August 2014 newsletter, along with newsletter archives, are available here.

Connection Web JulyAug 2014cover

Black Belt Hall of Fame calls for nominations

The University of West Alabama’s Center for the Study of the Black Belt (CSBB) is now accepting nominations for the 2015 Black Belt Hall of Fame induction.

The mission of the Black Belt Hall of Fame is to recognize and honor those associated with the Black Belt who have had a positive impact on the region, the state, the nation, and the world through contributions in art, business, education, industry, medicine, politics, law, and science.  Those to be considered for induction may be living or deceased. Inductees must have either been born in the Black Belt, spent a significant amount of time in the Black Belt, and/or had a significant impact on the Black Belt specifically.

“We were pleased to induct Betty Craft Banks, Ruby Pickens Tartt and Dr. Billie Jean Young in 2014,” said Black Belt Archivist Amy Christiansen. The three joined previous inductees, educator Dr. Robert Brown, artist and writer Dorothy Altman “Tut” Riddick, the late paleontologist Josie Winifred “Winnie” McGlamery, the late author Mary Thomas Ward Brown, the late educator and researcher George Washington Carver, the late musician Willie Earl King, the late storyteller Kathryn Tucker Windham, educator William James Edwards and folksinger Vera Hall. “There are deserving individuals that have distinguished themselves as significant contributors to and supporters of the culture and people of the Black Belt region,” added Christensen. “We are excited to begin the process of accepting nominations for 2015 in order to recognize more outstanding individuals.”

The Black Belt Hall of Fame nomination form is available here. The deadline for nomination submissions is Friday, August 29, 2014. For more information, please contact Amy Christiansen at 205-652-3655 or achristiansen@uwa.edu. Submissions may also be mailed to the Center for the Study of the Black Belt, UWA Station 45, Livingston, AL, 35470.

Alabama’s 2014 Places in Peril announced

 

Alabama’s Most Endangered Sites for 2014         

Urgent Action Is Needed to Save Important Historic and Architecturally Significant Sites

Some of Alabama’s greatest places of historical and architectural significance are at risk! Neglect, redevelopment pressures, and disregard for the importance of historic preservation threaten to rob Alabamians of distinctive buildings and their settings, depriving citizens and visitors of irreplaceable elements of the state’s cultural heritage. 

Each year since 1994, the Alabama Historical Commission and the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation have published a list of the state’s most endangered historic places in an effort to publicize the urgent need for action to save important private homes, public buildings, bridges, and other parts of the built environment. Over those two decades, many structures have been saved, but many others have been lost. In fact, this year’s list includes two places that have been listed before—one that continues to languish in neglect, worse for the wear and tear of intervening years, and one that has benefitted from recent restoration but now needs a new steward.

The 2014 list of Alabama Places in Peril includes two public buildings, a grand antebellum home and a modest twentieth-century bungalow, an old mill complex, and one of the best-known streetscapes in the state.

• Old Tuscaloosa County Jail, 2803 Sixth Street, Tuscaloosa, circa 1856, William B. Robertson, arch.

• Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Birmingham Branch, 1801 Fifth Ave., N., Birmingham, 1926-7, Warren, Knight & Davis, arch., J. Krebs, builder; addition 1958-9

•  Winter Place, 454 S. Goldthwaite St., Montgomery, ca. 1850 w/1870s addition

•  Amelia and Samuel Boynton House, 1315 Lapsley Street, Selma, ca. 1935

•  Pearce’s Mill, Hamilton vicinity, ca. 1840-1940

•  North Eufaula Avenue Parkway, Eufaula, mid-19th century to the present, multiple architects, landscape architects, and horitculturists, many unknown

For information about Places in Peril, and to help with their preservation, please contact the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation by mail at Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation, UWA Station 45, Livingston, AL, 35470, call (205) 652-3497 or email alabamatrust@athp.org. Visit our website at www.alabamatrust.info.

The Places in Peril list carries no formal protection, but it does build awareness in local communities about endangered sites, and can help generate support to preserve these places.

Click here to view the 2014 Places In Peril listing.

 

Campbell Environmental Educational Center dedicated March 18

The Campbell Environmental Education Center was dedicated on Tuesday, March 18, 2014. Pictured at event are, from top, Business Manger Lawson Edmonds, Asst. Director of Physical Plant Bobby Truelove, Vice President of Financial Affairs Raiford Noland, Director of Physical Plant Bob Holycross, Educational Asst. CSBB Rosa Hall, Dean-Division of Educational Outreach Dr. Tina Jones, Black Belt Museum Curator Dr. John Hall, UWA Special Administrator John Blackwell and wife, Shirley.

The Campbell Environmental Education Center was dedicated on Tuesday, March 18, 2014. Pictured at event are, from top, Business Manger Lawson Edmonds, Asst. Director of Physical Plant Bobby Truelove, Vice President of Financial Affairs Raiford Noland, Campbell family friends Bill and Linda Virgin, Director of Physical Plant Bob Holycross, Educational Asst. CSBB Rosa Hall, Dean-Division of Educational Outreach Dr. Tina Jones, Black Belt Museum Curator Dr. John Hall, UWA Special Administrator John Blackwell and wife, Shirley.

The Campbell Environmental Education Center (CEEC) at the University of West Alabama was dedicated on Tuesday, March 18, 2014, at 10:30 a.m. on the Livingston campus.

The Campbell Environmental Education Center is home to offices of the Division of Educational Outreach’s Black Belt Museum and Black Belt Garden. In addition, an educational classroom and community meeting room (which is rentable to the public) are located in the building.

The former Campbell-Strickland House was built in southwest Sumter County in 1900 by Robert Campbell and Susan Alice Gully, and housed a family of eleven, including eight children and a local school teacher.

The house is divided into three sections, the left of which held (from back to front) a kitchen, a dining room, the teacher’s quarters, and Mrs. Campbell’s sun parlor where she painted and displayed her artwork. The front porch now extends across the entire length of the front of the house, replacing the sun parlor. However, the original windows that divided the sun parlor from the front room remain. These unusual windows recede into the attic space allowing them to be used as doorways.

The middle section of the house consisted of two large bedrooms that housed the five daughters of the family—Alice, Laura, Betty, Justina, and Sarah—while the right section of the house also consisted of two large bedrooms, the front one being for the family’s three boys (Bob, Slocum, and Wayne) and the back one being for Robert and Susan.

The house, with its white and green paint scheme, looks much like it did when first built.  The sun parlor, which was added later, was too badly deteriorated to move.  Stairs came off of the front porch in front of each breezeway. Paths from the stairways met at the gate of a long picket fence. The bed that was created by the front porch and pathways was filled with rose bushes and daffodils while the backyard was shaded by pecan trees. The Campbell’s ran a general store, situated nearby, along a road that ran in front of the house.

The house was donated in 2009 to the University by owners Larry and Crystal Strickland of York.

For information on the Campbell Environmental Education Center, please contact UWA’s Center for the Study of the Black Belt in the Division of Educational Outreach at (205) 652-3828.

Craft of twining explored in Moore’s book

Twined Bags: An Historical Finger-Weaving Craft of Native Americans contains 84 photos and illustrations. Over 9,000 years old, the craft of twining, according to archeological findings was once utilitarian. Be a part of the generation that is helping to keep this tradition alive. Easy-to-follow instructions, helpful hints and suggestions will enable you to learn the simple weaving technique known as twining.

Monica Moore is a living historian who practices the Native American skills of making twined bags and deer toe leggings shakers, for traditional stomp dancing. She is also the executive secretary at the University of West Alabama’s Division of Educational Outreach. For more information or to purchase a book, contact Moore at 205-366-2275, monica@twinedbags.com, and visit her website at www.twinedbags.com.

 

 

A review of  Twined Bags: An Historical Finger-Weaving Craft of Native Americans by Vincent Spiotti of Muzzleloader magazine can be viewed here.

 

 

Continuing Education Summer Art Classes announced

The Department of Continuing Education in the Division of Educational Outreach at the University of West Alabama is now offering a variety of painting and fiber art classes at the Livingston campus and Demopolis Higher Education Center.

 

Loops at Land with Monica Moore in Livingson

Each Tuesday, fellow fiber artists meet at Land Hall on the UWA campus in Livingston from 5:30-7:30 p.m. to work on unfinished projects or discover new projects and techniques. Participants work on many projects involving the fiber arts including knitting, crocheting, tatting, twining, finger-weaving, cross stitching, needle-felting, weaving, embroidery, sewing and quilting. Beginning students and accomplished artisans are welcome. Please join us. This event is free and open to the public. Bring a project and sit, stitch, relax, and fellowship while sharing your projects. For more information contact Monica Moore, call 205-652-3828, or email centerforblackbelt@uwa.edu.

 

 

© 2014 Center for the Study of the Black Belt