BY GENA HUFF, Editor
The Aliceville Museum is presenting a traveling exhibit dedicated to Alabama’s 200th Bicentennial birthday. Alabama became the nation’s 22nd state on December 14, 1819. This informative exhibition is traveling to all 67 Alabama counties through December 2019 and will only be in Pickens County July 14 – July 28, 2018.
The exhibit features eight stations signifying different periods of Alabama’s history. Each station has a large display with two touch screens. A menu including a timeline, pictures of artifacts, and an overview are available for browsing information at each station. Also included in the exhibit is a large four-pronged display, a display specific to Pickens County, and an exhibit located at the entrance which produces sounds of Alabama including dulcimer music, banjo music, and singing.
According to the museum’s director, John Gillum, the exhibition arrives by semi-truck and comes in 24 wooden crates. After unloading the crates, it is the responsibility of the museum to rebuild the displays, arrange the displays, break down the displays when the time frame has elapsed, and recrate the displays to be shipped to the next county. With the help of a few volunteers when the semi arrived – and after 10 hours of putting displays together and the most welcomed arrival of some members of the Pickens Academy football team to help remove the heavy crates – the exhibition is ready for public viewing.
A museum volunteer will be on hand to answer any questions or guide visitors around the exhibit. “We’ll have somebody in here all the time, just to help people out,” said Gillum. The exhibit does involve a lot of reading but is very informative and interesting. While browsing through one of the stations, we came across information involving Aliceville’s Prisoner of War camp which Gillum did not realize had been included.
“When we scheduled it, I didn’t think about the importance of school being in (session),” Gillum remarked. “I didn’t really know what I was getting into at the time. They sent out a notice all over the state, every county had to have a location. And there was no response with Pickens County yet, so I jumped in and thought, ‘Okay, we’ll do it.’ But didn’t think about who should come and when it should be, I just wanted to get it in early before it had been all over the place.”
See complete story in the Pickens County Herald.