Everywhere she goes, there’s always a big crowd

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 6, 2013

Peeping through my Venetian blind, I saw Miss Cora Covington from over the way, heading to my front porch to help me shell peas. Clay Clyde Clump had delivered two basketsful, which were just awaiting our busy fingers. I had pans out and the porch ceiling fan on. I thought we could sit in the shade, shell, and have some lemonade and watermelon later on.

Covington Hall was still beautiful with bunting and flags from the Fourth. I had been one of many guests for the Colonel’s barbecue, camp stew, corn on the cob, slaw, cakes, pies and ice cream.

There had been music, speeches, toasts, fireworks and the ringing of bells. John Adams, who set the standards for the Glorious Fourth more than 200 years ago, would have been pleased – and from what I’ve heard, it took something to please Mr. Adams.

Miss Cora sat in my porch swing and shelled as we talked over the news. I rocked as I shelled.

Shirley (Tucker) Stokes on June 29 was ordained a deaconess for the Andalusia Seventh Day Adventist Church.

Seen at the Corner Market for lunch were Joyce (Bess) Leddon and her sister, Jimmie (Bess) Stewart.

Seen at David’s for supper were Steve and Debbie (Davis) Posey, her parents, Rayford and Carolyn Davis, Steve and Debbie’s son, Clayton, who is in pharmacy school, Debbie’s brother, Dwain, and his wife, Tonya (Glisson) Davis, and their son, Bolton.

Seen at the Corner Market for the Sunday lunch buffet were Bill and Sue Rawls and her sister and brother-in-law, Eloise and Byrd Holloway, from Montgomery, Willie and Emma Locke, Michael and Melisha Heard, Pastor Darryl Calloway of First Baptist Church, Whatley Street, his wife Pat, Tracy Locke, little Amari, and Lela Bradley.

Also seen were the grandchildren, Emma Eckenrod and Brady Eckenrod, of Marilyn Williams, Willie and Sherry Watson, Taylor Copeland, Nell Williams, Tommy and Ginger Hitson, John and Katie (Bass) Foley and their son, Lawrence, Katie’s brother, Mike Bass, and Diane Bass, Tom and Elaine Knowles and their granddaughter, Heather, Paul and Joann Sanders, Roy and Faye Wiggins, Jimmy Gillis, Lamar and Katie Maddox, Jeff and Laquetta Grimes, Hunter and Ginny Grimes and their William and Jackson, Janna McGlamory and her Mitch, Natalie and Mallory, Jeffery Douglas and his guest, Carrie Holloway.

Seen, too, were Larry and Mary Avery, Ed and Judy Buck, Thagard and Linda Colvin, Gordon and Trudy Vickers, John and Gloria Collier, Leamon and Fosteen Hudson, the Jessie Sirmon family, the Tinker Sirmon family, Sherrill Edson, Billy and Diane Knox, Fred and Dot Simpler, their daughter, Diane (Simpler) Black, Carolyn Wilson, Ronald and Kathryn Williamson, his mother, Jean Williamson, his son, Josh Williamson with his girls, Isabella and Ivy, Steve Dyess, Janet Feagin, David and Carol Moore, their daughter, Allison (Moore) Stroud, and her three sons, John David, Spencer and Wilson.

Seen at David’s for supper were Tom and Margaret Stallings from Florala, dining with his sister, Mrs. George Kelley, and her husband; also, Richard and Jan Butts, their daughter, Bridgett Butts, and Curtis and June Simpson.

A Sunday-School class from First Baptist, East Three-Notch Street, enjoyed a fellowship supper last week at David’s. Attending were Jeremy and Jennifer McMath, Neal and Jennifer Dansby, Dwight and Sonia Crigger, Joe and Jackie McDanal, Bill and Cathy King, Bob and Cathy Harry, Jim and Holley Krudop, Duane and Brenda Mooney, Connie Seale, Ken and Helen Johnson, Cindy Benson, Lisa Gunter and Betty Gay.

The Covington Historical Society met the evening of June 27 in the Dixon Memorial of the Andalusia Public Library.

The room was decorated in red, white and blue in honor of the upcoming Fourth of July with a buffet of hotdogs, chips, lemonade, and apple pie, provided by Sue (Bass) Wilson, vice-president and program chairman. Col. William Blocker, president, contributed a platter of summertime watermelon chunks. Bea Miller added toasted pecans, and Nancy Robbins placed mixed nuts.

Col. Blocker opened the meeting by calling on Bill Law to pray.

The pledge to the flag was followed by the state song, “Alabama,” led by Larry Shaw and accompanied by Mrs. Wilson at the piano.

Guests were recognized.

The minutes by Robbins and the financial statement by Harmon Proctor were both passed.

Committee reports followed.

Mrs. Wilson introduced the speaker, Jim Lawrence of Opp, Opp High School Class of 1965, Troy University graduate, and U.S. Air Force retiree, having served 27 years in the military, a man who has traveled over two million miles.

Lawrence said that the military offered him a chance to see the world and receive a good education.

The author of one book, Airman Odyssey, his memoir, Lawrence gave a preview of his yet-to-be-published second book, American Veterans, stories of American veterans, especially those in Covington County, dating back to the War Between the States. One modern veteran spotlighted was our own Sir Francis McGowin, whose son Steve was present.

Attending were Sue (Bass) Wilson, Jan White, Harmon Proctor, Bea Miller, Wanda Davis, John Vick, Bill Law, Wyley Ward, Morgan and Wilma Moore, Joe Wingard, Fran Fine, Darwin Pippin (who recently turned 90), Nancy Robbins, Glen and Barbara Powell, Jarrod and Judy Cooper and their twin grandsons, Cole and Conner Howell, Norma King, Larry Shaw, Betsy Tucker, Tessa Mock, Curtis Hampton Thomasson, David Walters, Irene (Davis) Butler, Randy Franklin and his sons, Will and Joseph, Vernell and Flora Craig, Jeff Williamson, Herb Jasper and Steve McGowin.

The celebration of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 continues.

Again, I ask that citizens of Andalusia join the Covington Historical Society and pay its annual dues of $25 to help preserve the history of our county, whether you attend meetings or not. Mail to CHS, P.O. Box 1582, Andalusia, AL 36420. Include your e-mail address if you wish to be reminded of up-coming meetings.

To commemorate the Sesquicentennial of the War Between the States, let us return to this week 150 years ago.

A three-day battle was fought July 1-3 at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The North, outnumbering the South and located on higher ground (Big Round Top and Little Round Top along Cemetery Ridge) stopped the advance of General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia and other Southern forces, led by men such as Gen. A. P. Hill, General Hood, General Ewell, General Johnson, and General Longstreet.

Fighting for the North, under Gen. George Meade with his Army of the Potomac, were leaders such as General Buford, Gen. G. K. Warren, Gen. O.O. Howard, and General Doubleday.

During the fighting Gen. John Reynolds of the federal forces was killed and Confederate General Archer was taken prisoner.

At one point Lee sent some 15,000 men, led by Pettigrew, Trimble and Pickett under General Longstreet, to attack Meade’s line, which stretched from Culp’s Hill to Big Round Top and Devil’s Den, in hand-to-hand combat. The infamous Pickett’s Charge resulted in failure to take Meade’s position.

The South retreated, heading back to Virginia. Rainfall helped the Confederates escape the North, who did little in the way of pursuing its enemy.

A third of the Southern soldiers, fighting at Gettysburg, were killed.

Meanwhile down in Tennessee in the so-called “Tullahoma Campaign” (a military plan), Gen. Braxton Bragg retreated with his Southern forces from the invading North.

Farther south, along the Mississippi River, in Vicksburg, Miss., the six-week siege by the North ended when on July 4 the town, near starvation, officially surrendered to General Grant. Among those surrendering were Gen. John Pemberton and his 29,000 troops. Much was made of the fact that the surrender came on the Fourth.

The South seemed doomed after these major defeats.

For those who collect stamps, consider those associated with the War of 1812 and the Sesquicentennial of “the War.”

The mysterian this week is a double answer. What were the two places advertised in the Bottom when trains arrived?

This week’s birthdays are those of George M. Cohan, American song writer, dramatist, producer, and Broadway star; our nation on July 4, l776; Nathaniel Hawthorne, American novelist of The Scarlet Letter; Stephen Collins Foster, American song writer; Calvin Coolidge, our 30th president; P. T. Barnum, American circus and museum showman; and John Paul Jones, American naval hero, who said “I have not yet begun to fight,” aboard an American ship named in honor of Benjamin Franklin during an encounter with the British in the Revolutionary War.

Cohan wrote such patriotic songs as “You’re a Grand, Old Flag,” “Give My Regards to Broadway,” “Mary,” “The Yankee Doodle Boy,” and “Over There.”

Foster wrote songs such as “Oh! Susanna,” which features Alabama; ”My Old Kentucky Home,” “Old Folks at Home,” “Camptown Races,” “Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair,” and “Beautiful Dreamer.”

Now, gentle reader, allow me to encourage each of us to be in his place of worship this weekend, Lord willing.

Fare thee well.