For the love of piping hot flourettes

Published 12:04 am Saturday, August 15, 2015

Peeping through my Venetian blind, I beheld Miss Cora Covington, heading to my humble cottage from Covington Hall. She had on her arm a basket, laden, as I soon learned, with jars of this year’s fig preserves, gifts for yours truly.


She was not long in my quaint abode before I baked a pan of biscuits; and we ate two or three of the “flourettes,” hot from the oven, dripping with butter, and heaped with fig preserves.

Miss Cora keeps a pantry, lined with jars of all kinds of jams and preserves, over at the great hall, pretty to view and even better to sample.

As we busied ourselves, we shared what news we knew.

Seen at Hook’s was Greg Mayberry. I’m so glad Hook’s is open again. Their pound cakes are especially good. I am told they reopened the third Monday in June.

Seen at David’s were Wayne and Lenora Johnson.

Dorothy Waldrop and I enjoyed a meal together at the Dairy Queen, Andalusia’s oldest, still-operating eatery.

Seen at Hook’s for supper were Judge Lex Short and his wife, Susan, with their children, Sara Catherine (and her husband Wilson Patrick), Alex Short, and Ada Short.

Seen also at table at Hook’s were Norma Riley Goolsby, Robert and Nancy Smith, Andy and Mickie Riley and their grandson, Carson Riley, and Gary Wages.

Seen, too, at Hook’s were Thagard and Linda Colvin. Thagard has recently published his first novel, Alapaha River Night Hunters.

Eating at the Samurai Japanese Restaurant, I read a sign that advertised a branch of the restaurant has opened in Navarre, Florida.

The Portly Gentleman told me with a long face that Tabby D’s has stopped serving its Friday-night buffets, as of June 1.

Seen at the Samurai for supper were Brian and Jennifer Earnest and their son Hunter.

Seen out and about were Mrs. Cobb, Herb Jasper, Thomas Hale (Garrison’s son, Virginia’s grandson), William Granger, and Voncile Newman.

Picking up my mail at the P.O., I ran into Melissa (Merrill) Gambill, as lovely a person as I had been told. She has returned to Andalusia and is living in a house built by her dad.

Also at the P.O. I had a nice conversation with Kim Dyess, the retired educator.

Seen at the Huddle House were Bill Law and Mike Jones (the former reading teacher at the Andalusia High School).

Seen at the Samurai were Tommy and Michele Gerlach.

Some of you know Miss Marion Bumpers, “Bumpy,” a retired educator living in Grove Hill. She turned 89 this August. She and Jeanice Kirkland were great friends.

A reception to honor Charles Hinson upon his 80th birthday is planned for August 16, 2 – 4 p.m., in the Florida Chautauqua Hall of Brotherhood in DeFuniak Springs, Florida.

Hinson was once choral director at the Andalusia High School in the mid-sixties.

Congratulations to Jay McCord and Anna Bay McCord, who were graduated from Troy University Friday, May 8. Notably, both brother and sister received their diplomas in the same ceremony.

Colonel Covington, in an address at the Andalusia Lyceum, stated that the American people seem no longer to know the difference in right and wrong nor to have common sense. He repeated what he has said before, that U.S.A. has come to mean “United Sins of America.”

He credited, partly, the removal of God (as if that could actually be done) and the Ten Commandments from schools as a reason for the rise of sin in the Nation.

He concluded his speech by saying, “Sin is militant and mean and has risen to power.”

The June meeting of the Covington Rifles Camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans assembled in the Dixon Memorial of the public library with Commander Randy Kelley, presiding.

Hank Roberts worded the invocation.

Following salutes to the flags, “Dixie” was sung, led by Larry Shaw.

The Nominating Committee, Vaughn Bowers, Jimmy Cobb, and Curtis Thomasson, presented the following slate of officers for 2015 – 2016: John Allen Gantt, commander; Hank Roberts, 1st Lt. commander; Larry Shaw, 2nd Lt. commander; Derick Davis, adjutant and treasurer; Sir Francis McGowin, judge advocate and historian; Vaughn Bowers, sergeant at arms; Joseph Cecil Wingard, poet and publicist; and Randy Kelley, chaplain. The new officers were voted in and then presented by Bowers.

The camp voted to participate in the July 4 parade, sponsored by the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Guests were Robert Gunter and Joe Clark, commander of the Southeast Alabama Brigade of the SCV, Clark belongs to the camp in Enterprise.

David Coggins, of the Enterprise camp, announced that he has erected a Confederate flag and monument along U.S. 331 between Brantley and Luverne. He is working to build a new SCV camp in Crenshaw County.

Refreshments were provided by Derick Davis and Sir Francis McGowin.

Sisters Charlotte Thomasson, Alice Davis, Sue Willis, and Cynthia Gunter, along with Alice’s daughter, Joan Davis, and Sue’s daughter, Dawn Gomillion, visited Colonial Williamsburg and other historical places in April.

The Andalusians in this group left here April 25 for Sue’s home in Waynesville, North Carolina, and then continued the next day to Dawn’s house in Gainsville, Virginia.

On Monday they visited Jamestown, walking in the footsteps of Captain John Smith and Pocohontas at the site of the first permanent English settlement in the New World.

Later they toured the Jamestown settlement just a few miles away.

One highlight was boarding the Susan Constant, a replica of one of the ships that brought the settlers over from England.

The group spent April 28, touring Colonial Williamsburg.

Their walking tour included the Governor’s Palace, gardens, the Capitol, the George Wythe house, and other historical homes and buildings.

The ladies enjoyed lunch at Josiah Chowning’s Tavern. The day ended at the Governor’s Palace with a candlelight concert of music from colonial times.

The next day “the girls” headed out to two James River plantations. The first stop was Berkeley Plantation, a 1726 Georgian mansion, the birthplace of Benjamin Harrison, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and three-times governor of Virginia, and also home to William Henry Harrison, ninth president of the United States, and his grandson, Benjamin Harrison, twenty-third president.

General Daniel Butterfield composed “Taps” while at Berkeley.

After lunch at Cul’s Café, a small café in a renovated country store built in 1872, the group visited Shirley Plantation, which dates back to 1613.

The Hill/Carter descendants living at Shirley today are the eleventh generation of the family that settled Shirley in the 1650’s.

The group spent the next morning, touring Oatlands Plantation in Leesburg, near Dawn’s home.

Several of the ladies made their first visit to Wegmans in the afternoon while the rest enjoyed time with Col. Stephen Gomillion and sons, Lance and Reid.

On Friday the group headed to Pennsylvania. The first stop was Gettysburg to tour President Eisenhower’s home.

After lunch at the cafeteria at the Gettysburg Visitor Center, they were on the road to Hershey’s, “the sweetest place on earth.”

After the Hershey’s Great American Chocolate Tour Ride, the ladies boarded a trolley and took a narrated tour of the town.

On Saturday the group spent the day in Lancaster County, touring the Amish country.

During the day the ladies visited shops, drove around the countryside, and took an Amish buggy ride.

The visit to Lancaster County was a perfect ending to a perfect sight-seeing trip.

The tired-but-happy group arrived home in the Dimple of Dixie May 4.

The Covington Rifles Camp 1586 of the Sons of the Confederate Veterans met July 2 in the Dixon Memorial of the Andalusia Public Library.

Randy “R” Kelley, commander, presided.

Hank Roberts, out-going chaplain, offered prayer.

Pledges were made to the flags and “Dixie” sung, as all stood.

Sir Francis McGowin presented a program on Nathan Bedford Forrest, born July 13, as well as a review of Confederate flags and a general discussion of current affairs.

Sir Francis then formally installed the new officers, listed elsewhere in this column.

A benediction was worded by Hank Roberts.

A pound cake, hot from the oven, was enjoyed, a gift of Lady Ann McGowin, wife of Sir Francis McGowin.

Once again, I ask the citizens of Andalusia to 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, Alabama 36420.

The mysterian is Miss Mattie Waters. Who was she?

Recent birthdays are those of Izaak Walton, English writer of the most famous book on fishing, The Compleat Angler; John Dryden, English poet; Carrie Jacobs Bond, American songwriter of “When You Come to the End of a Perfect Day” and “I Love You Truly”; and Sir Walter Scott, Scottish novelist and poet.

Scott’s home still stands. His influence upon the Old South was considerable because he glorified the feudal system.

Scott’s most popular novel is Ivanhoe.

His best known line is “Oh, what a tangled web we weave/When first we practice to deceive.”

His counterpart in the Old South was the American, William Gilmore Simms.

Some rank Scott second only to Dickens as a novelist.

Now, gentle reader, allow me to join Buffalo Bob Smith in encouraging each of us to be in his place of worship this weekend, Lord willing.

Thank you, gentle readers, for your encouraging words during my illnesses the last two months.

Perhaps I can continue onwards at a steadier pace.

Fare thee well.