New mural to focus on law enforcers?

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 22, 2013

Barbara Nichols hopes to convince Andalusia’s Mural Committee that its next project should focus on law enforcement.

Toward that end, she has researched law enforcement history, worked with Dothan murals artist Wes Hardin, and yesterday, she hosted a luncheon to begin the fundraising effort needed to make her dream a reality.

The proposed mural will focus on all aspects of law enforcement from 1935 through about 1975, she said. It will be a parade led by a 1940s era police car, and followed by two highway patrolmen on old-fashioned motorcycles.

“After them is the posse,” Nichols said. “There are five people on these horses,” she said. “All of them were sheriffs during this period.”

Though the mural plan is far from finalized, it will likely include images of Tom Head, Kate Head, Cliff Meredith, Pap Gantt and Elie Harrell.

One proposed theme has the “parade” passing the Covington County Courthouse, with the six women who first sat on a 1955 advisory jury here – believed to be the first female jurors in the state – watching from the courthouse steps.  They were Mrs. Abner Powell II, Mrs. Guy Carmichael, Mrs. Lester Thagard Jr., Mrs. L.J. Reeves, Mrs. Dige Bishop, and Mrs. E.E. Anthony Jr.

A number of former judges also will be featured, possibly as bystanders watching the parade.

With her first pitch, Nichols, the daughter of former Sheriff Meredith, who also was once a highway patrolman, immediately began collecting checks.

The idea is similar to the engraved brick pavers used at the Alatex Memorial, the Veterans Memorial, and the Cultural Arts Centre, she said. Only those willing to help fund this project will purchase a police, trooper or sheriff’s badge, or a gavel. A plaque of some sort near the mural will be used to note those contributions.

Nichols said that while she likes the idea of honoring her father, her passion for this mural is more about the secure environment in which she grew up.

“I walked all over this town, never once thinking anything would happen to me,” she said.

Those interested in contributing to the project may contact Nichols at, or by phone at 334-427-0454 or 334-303-7040.

Contributions also may be mailed to City of Andalusia, P.O. Box 429, in care of law mural.

Donors should note the person to be honored with their $100 contributions, and checks should be written to the City of Andalusia law mural.

Contributions are tax deductible, she said.