Alabama bicentennial books, stamps available

Published 1:29 am Thursday, August 2, 2018

Recent visitors to the LAAC’s The Gallery on East Three Notch Street in Andalusia are getting their pastports punched.

Not because they’re traveling abroad, but because they’re travelling back in time a bit as they visit different sites in Alabama as part of the state’s bicentennial celebration.

For a complete list of pastport sites, click here.

The Alabama Bicentennial PastPort is a printed guide to historic sites in each of Alabama’s 67 counties. The section on each county has a place to have the “pastport” stamped, and specific locations are assigned in each county to have that done. The books are available for purchase at The Gallery, which also will host the state’s traveling exhibit, Making Alabama. It will be on display from Sept. 5-26, and an opening reception is set for 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 4.

Alabama 200, which is coordinating the state’s bicentennial events, recently also released the Alabama Bicentennial PastPort mobile app.

The app supports the printed guide. The technology links to Encyclopedia of Alabama entries where users can learn more about PastPort destinations. It also allows them to virtually visit the nearly 300 museums, landmarks and historic destinations listed in the book, as well as digitally stamp their PastPort. More sites will be added in the future.

“The PastPort will appeal to all ages, but we especially wanted it to engage fourth graders because that’s when they are first introduced to Alabama history,” said Jay Lamar, Executive Director of the Alabama Bicentennial Commission. “It, along with lesson plans, can be downloaded into any Alabama classroom. But it is a great way to encourage people of all ages to get out and see Alabama.”