Columbus Chronicles: Tales From East Mississippi

Overview

After its founding in 1821, Columbus endured the hardships of early settlement and the tumult of the Civil War to enjoy years of prosperity while also weathering some hard times. Through it all, the city developed into the beloved homeplace residents are proud of today. Rufus Ward has been a diligent steward of the region’s history, and his popular “Ask Rufus” column stands as proof. This new collection presents some of his best historical tales. Taken together, these stories cover the breadth of the city’s ...
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Columbus Chronicles: Tales from East Mississippi

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Overview

After its founding in 1821, Columbus endured the hardships of early settlement and the tumult of the Civil War to enjoy years of prosperity while also weathering some hard times. Through it all, the city developed into the beloved homeplace residents are proud of today. Rufus Ward has been a diligent steward of the region’s history, and his popular “Ask Rufus” column stands as proof. This new collection presents some of his best historical tales. Taken together, these stories cover the breadth of the city’s history and capture the essence of the region’s heritage. What Native American tribes once called east Mississippi home? What are the oldest surviving houses in Columbus? What Columbus family provided Eudora Welty with her favorite mint julep recipe? Ask Rufus.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781609498597
  • Publisher: History Press, The
  • Publication date: 11/20/2012
  • Series: American Chronicles Series
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Rufus Ward has been active in the fields of history and historic preservation for more than thirty-five years. He divides his time between lectures on history-related topics and consulting on cultural projects. He also writes a weekly history column for the Commercial Dispatch in Columbus, Mississippi. He is an advisor emeritus to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, having previously represented the state of Mississippi on its board of advisors.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements 9

1 The Settlement of Columbus

Fort Smith, Mississippi Territory, 1813-1814 11

The St. Stephens Trace 14

The First Building on the Site of Columbus 16

African Americans and the Settlement of the Upper Tombigbee Valley 18

Where Did Military Road Get Its Name? 20

The Oldest Surviving Houses in Columbus 22

Columbus in 1822 24

2 Field and Forest

Jack Kaye's Window to a Lost World 27

"Lions and Tygers and Bears" 29

Hunting's Roots Run Deep 31

A Passing Distant Thunder 33

Turkey Hunting and the Settlement of Columbus 35

3 The People

Where Was Davy Crockett? 39

A Long Dangerous Ride 41

Colonel Wilfred Beaver: "A Patrol Leader of Great Dash" 43

Rube Burrows: The Most Feared Train Robber 45

Visions of Fort Apache and Tennessee Williams 48

Aberdeen's Reverend Ingraham and Cecil B. DeMille's: The Ten Commandments 50

A Titanic Columbus Link 52

Clyde Kilby and His Columbus "Hobbit Hole" 53

William Cocke Lived the Founding of America 55

Captain Sam Kaye's "Acrobatic Easter Egg" 57

4 Columbus Air Force Base

Before Columbus Air Force Base There Was Payne Field 61

The Beginnings of Columbus Air Force Base 63

Colonel "Joe Duck" and the Hurricane 64

5 Black History

Tracing African American Roots 69

Follow the Drinking Gourd 72

Black History and the Colonial Tombigbee Valley 74

Andrew Jackson and the Free Men of Color 75

They Sang the Blues 77

6 World War II and Columbus's Greatest Generation

Stories to Preserve 81

Remembering Those Who Served 83

The Passing of the Greatest Generation 85

Rommel's Afrika Korps Was Just Down the Road 88

Ninety-Five Years of Red Cross Service 89

7 Choctaws and Chickasaws

Pushmataha 93

What Indian Tribe Lived Here? 95

Playing Ball 181 Years Ago 97

8 Art, Libations and Music

The Art of History 101

Nicola Marschall's Columbus Portraits 103

And the Band Played "Gary Owen" 105

The Joints and Honky-tonks of Old 82 West 107

Eudora Welty's Whitehall Mint Julep 109

As Good As a First-Class Restaurant in Paris 111

Pirates, Pigs and 470 Years of Barbecue 113

9 Civil War

"No Personal Antagonism" 117

Fortress Columbus 119

"Number 27 and the Pumpkin Pie" 121

Memorial Day and the Legacy of Dr. William Sykes 124

A Firsthand Account of Grierson's Cavalry Raid of 1863 126

General Grant's Columbus Ploy 128

10 A Miscellany of History

The Crawford Panic 131

Columbus's Five Most Interesting Buildings 133

The "W": 165 Years of Quality Women's Education 136

Some Things Don't Change 139

The Mystery of "Ma" 141

The Legend of Black Creek 143

Was It the Ghost of Norman Staples? 145

Reflections of a Thirteenth-Century Gem 147

The Boy Scouts and the Little Sister of Liberty 149

Sources 153

About the Author 157

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