Friday, September 26, 2014

2015 Fundraiser for First White House of Confederacy

 In 2015 Civil War buffs will celebrate the last year of the Sesquicentennial of the War Between the States which was fought from 1861-1865. The First White House of the Confederacy commemorated 2011 with our first fundraiser and it is fitting that 2015 will commemorate the end of the War with our now bi-annual fundraiser scheduled for May 7th, 2015.

Our speaker in May will be Waite Rawls, President and CEO of the Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia. This should be very timely as the Museum of the Confederacy currently has plans to combine forces with the American Civil War Center at Historic Tredegar in Richmond, the site of the historic Tredegar Iron Works.

This should be a boon for both institutions. Katherine Calos of the Richmond Times-Dispatch wrote on November 13, 2013 quoting Edward L. Ayers, President of the University of Richmond. Ayers said: 'I think it is going to be a great thing for the city...a great thing for people who care about the Civil War and its going to be a great thing for people who care about the mission of both institutions..' 

 Calos wrote that Ayers continued: "You have the best collection of Confederate materials in the world and now you'll have it in a place where they can actually be displayed and esteemed probably more than ever".

The article in the Times-Dispatch goes on to say that more than 20 million dollars had been committed to the 30 million dollar project, so it is a plan well underway. Money talks loudly!

What will happen to the White House of the Confederacy (located next door to Museum)? According to the article it will continue to tell the story of Jefferson Davis and his family during the War, but I wonder how many people will come to visit once the Museum moves. I suppose only time and circumstances will tell.  

Monday, September 22, 2014

First White House Quilt Visits Quilts in Birmingham

September 10, 2014,  I was privileged to visit the Birmingham Museum of Art with Mary Elizabeth Johnson Huff, Montgomery author and quilt expert, and Ryan Blocker, Textile Curator at the Alabama Department of Archives. We were guests of Graham Boettcher, Ph.D., the William Cary Hulsey Curator of American Art at the Birmingham Museum of Art, and two of his colleagues.
We took our baby quilt and they brought out their two quilts, one a gunboat quilt and one a baby quilt.. Our gunboat quilt is in a traveling exhibit as longtime readers of this blog know, but it was good to see three of the four quilts together and notice their similarities.

It was also fascinating to think that after so many years, the three quilts were reunited for a brief time. I wrote an article for the Alabama Heritage Magazine,  Summer  2014 issue, on the conservation of our two quilts. It is titled "The Tale of Two Quilts: A Sesquicentennial Project".

I hope you will all make plans to visit the First White House of the Confederacy and see our  baby quilt as well as all the other treasures we have in our wonderful House Museum!



Sunday, September 21, 2014

Jefferson Davis Book

I received notice that the Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia is inviting nominations for an annual competition to honor historical research and writing on life in the Confederate States during the Civil War.

If anyone is interested one can go to the website Should be of interest to some of you "wanna be" writers.

The Movie, 'Gone With the Wind" Turns 75 Years Old

I saw in the Montgomery Advertiser today, September 21, 2014 that the movie version of "Gone With the Wind" is celebrating its 75th Anniversary December 15th in Atlanta, Georgia. Bryan Alexander writes "For its 75th anniversary, the film will see screenings in more than 650 theatres nationwide on Sept. 28 and Oct 1..."

I have a DVD copy, do you? I will watch it to celebrate, but just for fun, I may head for the movie theatre nearby. There is nothing like the big screen.  As soon as I saw the caption in the paper today I automatically began humming the theme song. Bet you can't watch it without shedding a tear or two.

Of course the movie is based on the novel by the same name by Margaret Mitchell. I have blogged about GWTW many times as it is one of my favorites. The Advertiser article said it is the box office gold standard by which all other movies have not been able to top. It won 10 academy awards.