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Heritage Forums at Landmark Park

Matt Boster

Viewed: 872

Posted by: Matt Boster
Date: Jul 03 2017 7:50 AM

If you have an interest in history, Landmark Park is the place to be each Sunday afternoon during the month of July. Our annual Heritage Forum series will feature guest speakers presenting programs on state and local history. The forums will be presented in the Interpretive Center Auditorium at 3 p.m. Refreshments will follow each session and CEUs are available. Registration is required and programs are free with your paid gate admission. Call 334-794-3452 to register. 


July 9: Landmark Goes Digital

Presented by Dr. Marty Olliff and Dr. Bob Saunders. Olliff and Saunders discuss the Park’s new Smartphone Guided Tour—a way to deliver digitally more information about physical locations more inexpensively than any other method.  Olliff and Saunders wrote short web-based articles about six historical structures at Landmark Park that feature images and a short video.  The tour is accessible by linking via the web and by clicking QR codes with smartphones at each structure. Olliff and Saunders teach History at Troy University Dothan Campus and serve on the Dothan Landmarks Foundation, Inc. Board of Directors. 

July 16: Shot in Alabama: A History of Photography in the Heart of Dixie, 1839–1941

Frances Robb is the foremost historian of photographs in Alabama today. She has been active for years in appraising photos, consulting on photographic installations (including the Snellgrove Photo installation in the Houston County courthouse Jury Room), and producing workshops in identifying and managing photographs and photo collections. Her presentation will summarize her findings in her new book Shot in Alabama, published by the University of Alabama Press in 2017.  She will recount the history of photography and photographers in the state from the introduction of the Daguerreotype in 1839 to the eve of World War 2. She will have books available for purchase and will be available to sign copies.

July 23: Southside: Eufaula’s Cotton Mill Village And Its People, 1890-1945

Presented by Dr. David Alsobrook. Southside is the name of the mill village south of downtown Eufaula. David Alsobrook examines the community in this sociological history /memoir, sympathetically retelling the stories of the working class residents and cotton textile mill owners who lived there. Alsobrook spent much of his life with his grandparents in Eufaula’s Southside community. He received his PhD from Auburn University, then worked as the director of the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library, the Clinton Presidential Library, and the History Museum of Mobile before retiring.  He is the current president of the Alabama Historical Association. Copies of this new book, published by Mercer University Press in 2017, will be available for purchase, and Dr. Alsobrook will autograph books for you.

July 30: Pen Strokes of Justice: Judge Horton and the Scottsboro Boys

Rebekah Davis joins us through the auspices of the Alabama Humanities Foundation’s “Road Scholar” program. The history of the Scottsboro Boys—nine black youths accused of raping two white women on a train in the Tennessee Valley of Alabama in the early 1930s—is well known.  Little known, however, is the history of the Decatur judge who overturned the jury’s guilty verdict levied against Haywood Patterson, the first defendant.  Judge Horton received over 700 letters during the trial.  He kept them all in two lard buckets. Davis will have audience members read from the letters during her discussion of the infamous case. Rebekah Davis is the archivist for Limestone County, Judge Horton’s home, and serves as the president of the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators. 


Landmark Park is a 135-acre natural science and history museum located on the outskirts of Dothan.  Features of the park include nature trails, a planetarium, playground, picnic areas, an elevated boardwalk, a turn-of-the-century farmstead with sheep, chickens, cows and other farm animals and crops typical of an 1890s farm.  In addition, the park includes a drugstore with operating soda fountain, one-room school, general store, and historic church, all preserved from the surrounding area. The park is open Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and on Sundays from noon to 6 p.m.  Regular admission is $4 adults, $3 for children and is free for park members and children age 2 and under.  The park is located on U.S. Hwy 431 North, three miles north of Dothan’s Ross Clark Circle.  For more info, call 334-794-3452 or visit www.landmarkparkdothan.com.

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