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Spring Pilgrimage

The Marengo County Historical Society will celebrate its 2011 Spring Pilgrimage in collaboration with the Southern Literary Trail featuring homes and churches in the Canebrake area of Marengo County later this month.

An weekend of music and memories kicks off April 29 with a special tribute to honor the late James Haskins, one of the nation’s most published writers and a native of Demopolis.

“His books also include profiles of African American musicians and sports heroes,” Kirk Brooker said. “Haskins wrote a history of Harlem’s Cotton Club nightclub that became the source of director Francis Ford Coppola’s Hollywood film about the Club with Richard Gere and Diane Lane.”

Panelists for the evening include the literary colleagues of Jim Haskins: Bert Hitchcock, Billy Cobb, and Don Noble who interviewed Haskins for APT’s “Bookmark.” They will be moderated by Alan Brown of University of West Alabama.

The “Bookmark” interview will be shown during the evening, which will feature music from the Morning Star Baptist Male Chorus and the UWA Choir under the direction of Willie Williams.

The program is made possible through grant support from the Alabama Humanities Foundation, and is presented by Marengo County Historical Society, Two Rivers Arts Council, Demopolis Public Library, Morning Star Baptist Church Choir, University of West Alabama Choir and Southern Literary Trail.

There will be a champagne reception following the program and admission is free.

The Marengo County Historical Society’s Pilgrimage doors open for guests April 30 at 10 a.m.. Sites featured in Gallion include Battersea c.1820 , home of Cyd & Mark Boland; and St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church c.1853.

Faunsdale area sites include Mckee House c.1918, home of Nancy & George McKee; Faunsdale jail c. 1907; Faunsdale Presbyterian Church c.1887; First Baptist Church of Faunsdale c.1889; St. Michael’s Episcopal Church c.1932; Roseland Plantation c.1830, owned by the Gaines family; and Paulling Place, home of Bradley Hale.

Spring Pilgrimage sites will be open April 30, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, May 1 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets are $20 per person and $10 for children under 12.

Tickets are available before and during the event at the Canebrake Craft Corner at Bluff Hall or by calling 334-289-9644.

Tickets are also available at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church the weekend of the Pilgrimage.