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Thu, April 24, 2014

Attractions: Historical


The Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, The Alabama Veterans Memorial, and more.


January 07, 2010

Air Force Enlisted Heritage Hall
Dedicated to the story of contributions by enlisted individuals to military aviation in America, the hall takes the visitor from ballooning during the Civil War to the present-day U.S. Air Force. Notable exhibits focus on the world's first black fighter pilot and a Vietnam POW cell, including prisoner artifacts. 550 McDonald Street, Building 1143, Maxwell AFB-Gunter Annex, Montgomery. Monday–Friday, 7 a.m.–4 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Closed holidays. Free admission, but visitors without a military ID should call ahead, because the Heritage Hall is located on an active military base. 334-416-3202 or http://afehri.maxwell.af.mil.

Alabama Center for Traditional Culture
Features publications, exhibitions, media productions, concerts, festivals, and symposia dedicated to the research, documentation, and preservation of Alabama folk life. 410 North Hull Street, Montgomery. Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–4 p.m., by appointment only. Free admission. 334-242-3601 or www.arts.state.al.us/actc/index-folkarts-actc.html.

Alabama's Constitution Village
Interpreters in period dress give tours and demonstrate furniture making, printing, spinning, weaving, and open-hearth cooking. 109 Gates Avenue, Huntsville. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Closed in January and February. Admission charged. 256-564-8100 or www.earlyworks.com.

Alabama Department of Archives and History
Founded in 1901, the Alabama Department of Archives and History is the first and oldest state-funded archival agency in the nation. The museum includes artifacts from Native American culture and from the days before statehood through the Vietnam War, the Tattered Banners gallery, and more. 624 Washington Avenue, Montgomery. Monday–Saturday, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Research room closed Sunday–Monday. Free admission. 334-242-4435 or www.archives.state.al.us.

Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame
Located in the historic Carver Theatre, this modest-size museum honors jazz greats with ties to Alabama. Downtown, Civil Rights District, 1631 Fourth Avenue North. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Free admission, donations accepted. 254-2731 or www.jazzhall.com.

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The Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame at the Carver Theatre. (click for larger version)

Alabama Veterans Memorial
The 21-acre park is situated on a wooded hilltop and includes an Education Center; a historical timeline walkway; a Regiment of Columns that display stories, letters, and artwork; and a temple engraved with the 11,000 names of Alabamians lost to war in the 20th century. Close to Liberty Park and I-459. Open daily sunrise to sunset. 985-9488 or www.alabamaveterans.com.

Aliceville Museum and Cultural Arts Center
The Aliceville Museum collects, preserves, and interprets artifacts from World War II German POW camps located in Pickens County from 1942 to 1945. Collections include art objects, photographs, publications, and manuscripts from and relating to Camp Aliceville, and military artifacts from Pickens County veterans. 104 Broad Street Plaza, Aliceville. Tours by appointment, Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Closed noon–1 p.m. for lunch. Admission charged. 205-373-2363.

American Village
Visitors can travel into the colonial past, learn how the U.S. Constitution was framed, and visit historically inspired buildings. North of Montevallo on Highway 119. Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Admission charged. 665-3535 or www.americanvillage.org.

Arlington Antebellum Home
The only surviving home in Birmingham built prior to the Civil War. The house is furnished with period pieces and has a six-acre garden. 331 Cotton Avenue Southwest, Birmingham. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.; Sunday, 1–4 p.m. Admission charged. 780-5656 or www.birminghamal.gov/arlington/index.htm.

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Arlington Antebellum Home (click for larger version)

Berman Museum of World History
Features a collection of paintings, bronze sculptures, books, weapons, and historical artifacts donated by Colonel Farley L. Berman and his wife. Adjacent to the Natural History Museum. 840 Museum Drive, Anniston. Monday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Sunday 1–5 p.m. Closed Mondays, September–May. Admission charged. 256-237-6261 or www.bermanmuseum.org.

Bessemer Hall of History
A renovated railroad depot chronicling the history of Jefferson County, Bessemer, and Alabama. 1905 Alabama Avenue, Bessemer. Tuesday–Saturday, 9 a.m.–noon and 1–4 p.m. Free admission, donations accepted. 426-1633 or www.bessemerhallofhistory.com.

Bessemer Pioneer Homes
These three original structures were the homes of families—McAdory, Owen, and Sadler—who played significant roles in the history of the state. The oldest of the houses was built in 1817. Bessemer. Tours by appointment only. Admission charged. 426-1633.

Birmingham Civil Rights District
A six-block tribute to the civil rights movement. Included in the district are Kelly Ingram Park, the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame, Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, and the Fourth Avenue North Business District. Located between Sixth and Second Avenue North and 15th Street and 19th Street in downtown Birmingham. 324-2100 or www.bcvb.org/ttd-aframheritage.html.

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
The BCRI chronicles the civil rights movement with permanent and traveling exhibits and extensive archives. Facing Kelly Ingram Park. Downtown in the Civil Rights District, 520 16th Street North, Birmingham. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.; Sunday, 1–5 p.m. Admission charged, except on Martin Luther King, Jr., Day. 328-9696 or www.bcri.org.

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Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (click for larger version)

Birmingham Historical Society
The society works to encourage understanding and appreciation of Birmingham's cultural, economic, and physical heritage. One Sloss Quarters (Duncan House), Birmingham. Open only for special events; office, Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Free admission. 251-1880 or www.bhistorical.org.

Blakeley Historic Park
This park traces Alabama history: prehistoric Indian mounds; historic Indian Period; French, English, and Spanish settlement; and the establishment of Blakeley after the War of 1812. 34745 State Highway 225, Spanish Fort. Daily, 9 a.m.–dusk. Admission charged. 251-626-0798 or blakeleypark.com.

Brierfield Ironworks Historical State Park
Crumbling brick ruins are all that remain of the Brierfield Ironworks, which were destroyed in a raid by the Union army cavalry in March 1865. Special events include a reenactment of the Civil War raid, music festivals, country crafts fairs, and holiday events. 240 Furnace Parkway, Brierfield. Daily, dusk until dawn. Store hours daily, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Admission charged. 665-1856 or www.brierfieldironworks.com.

Burritt on the Mountain
Perched on a mountaintop with a view of Huntsville is the unusual retirement home of Dr. William Henry Burritt and the Historic Park, featuring five 19th-century farmsteads with period daily living activities and a large nature preserve traversed by trails. 3101 Burritt Drive, Huntsville. April–October, Tuesday–Saturday, 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Sunday, noon–5 p.m.; November–March,Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m., Sunday, noon–4 p.m. Admission charged. 256-536-2882 or www.burrittonthemountain.com.

Civil War Reenactments
Throughout the year, but mostly in the summertime, battles that took place nearly one hundred and fifty years ago rage once again in small towns across Alabama such as Stockton or Alexander City. If you're curious, the Battle for Decatur takes place in Decatur's Point Mallard Park with more than 200 "authentically clad reenactors, horses, and cannon." (www.decaturcvb.org). Any battles held at Tannehill Ironworks Historical State Park, in McCalla, would be a great place to start (these usually take place in May). While there, visit the three Civil War blast furnaces for a different side of Civil War history (www.tannehill.org).

Confederate Memorial Park
The 102-acre park is the site of Alabama's only home for Confederate veterans. It includes a museum, a nature trail, a walking and riding tour, and two cemeteries. 437 County Road 63, Marbury. Park open daily, 6 a.m.–dusk; museum, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Admission charged. 205-755-1990 or www.confederatememorialpark.com.

First White House of the Confederacy
The executive residence of Jefferson Davis and his family during the spring of 1861, when Montgomery was the capital of the Confederate States of America, contains many Davis family and Confederate relics, plus period furnishings. 644 Washington Avenue, Montgomery. 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m., Monday–Friday. Free admission, donations accepted. 334-242-1861.

Fort Toulouse/Jackson Park
A 165-acre park operated by the Alabama Historical Commission including a modern campground with RV hook-ups, boat ramps, nature trails, and a museum. It's also a National Historic Landmark with archaeological collections featuring French colonial, early American, and prehistoric Native American items. 2521 West Fort Toulouse Road, Wetumpka. Visitor Center hours Monday–Sunday, 8 a.m.–dusk. Park hours daily from 6 a.m.–9 p.m. (8 a.m.–5 p.m., November-March). Admission charged. 334-567-3002 or www.fttoulousejackson.org

Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum
A large group of locomotives, rail cars, equipment, and other rail relics are displayed on the museum grounds and in a 100-year-old depot. Train rides available. 1919 Ninth Street, Calera. Tuesday–Saturday, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Free admission, donations accepted. 668-3435 or www.hodrrm.org.

Horseshoe Bend Military Park
The Creek War battlefield where General Andrew Jackson's Tennessee Army defeated the Red Stick warriors on March 27, 1814. The Visitors Center offers a museum of artifacts and exhibits, an orientation slide presentation, and a bookstore. 11288 Horseshoe Bend Road, Daviston. Monday–Sunday, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Free admission. 256-234-7111 or www.nps.gov/hobe.

Indian Mound Museum
Examples of work by the Native Americans who inhabited prehistoric Alabama. The museum contains relics that represent the Paleo, Transitional, Paleoarchaic, Archaic, Woodland, Mississippian, and historic periods of Native Americans. 1028 South Court Street, Florence. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Admission charged. 256-760-6427.

Karl C. Harrison Museum of George Washington
One of the largest privately owned collections of George Washington family artifacts, portraits, letters, silver, china, and furniture. Mildred B. Harrison Library Building, Columbiana. Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Guided tours offered Wednesday–Friday. Free admission. 669-8767 or www.washingtonmuseum.com.

National Voting Rights Museum and Institute
The museum, which opened in 1993, features the Women's Suffrage exhibit and Living History exhibits highlighting foot soldiers of the voting rights movement. 1012 Water Avenue, Selma. Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–5 p.m; Saturday 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Admission charged. 334-418-0800 or selmavotingrightsmuseum.org.

North Alabama Railroad Museum
The museum is dedicated to the preservation of the railroad history of north Alabama and south-central Tennessee. Features 27 pieces of rolling stock that have been preserved, including 2 locomotives and both freight and passenger equipment. Train rides available. 694 Chase Road, Huntsville. Daily, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Free admission, donations accepted. 256-851-6276 or www.suncompsvc.com/narm.

Oak Hill Cemetery
Designated in early 1871 as the City Cemetery on the first plats of the Elyton Land Company, this cemetery has more than 10,000 burials, most dating to before 1930. The first interment was in April 1869, when Evaline A. Henley, infant daughter of Birmingham's first mayor, Robert Henley, was laid to rest. Nine of the 10 Birmingham founders are buried in Oak Hill Cemetery: William F. Nabers, William S. Mudd, Sylvester Steele, Thomas Peters, Robert N. Green, Alburto Martin, James M. Ware, William A. Walker, Sr., and Benjamin P. Worthington. 1120 19th Street North. Monday–Friday, 8 a.m.–4 p.m. Guided tours are available by prior arrangement. 251-6532 or www.oakhill-birmingham.org.

Old Alabama Town
The town is a four-block area of restored 19th- and early 20th-century buildings, including an area depicting life in 19th-century central Alabama. The collection at the Alabama Center for Traditional Culture includes period Alabama buildings, furnishings, textiles, and other research materials. 301 Columbus Street, Montgomery. Monday–Saturday, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Admission charged. 888-240-1850 or www.oldalabamatown.com.

Rikard's Mill
The restored 1849 operating gristmill sells items forged from an operating 1880s blacksmith shop. The grounds include hiking trails and picnic areas. Rikard's Mill, Beatrice. April–December, Thursday–Sunday, 11 a.m.–sunset. Admission charged. 251-789-2781 or www.tokillamockingbird.com/rikardsmill001.htm.

Rosa Parks Library and Museum
A 7,000-square-foot museum including permanent and special exhibits, as well as a 2,200-square-foot multimedia auditorium. The facility serves as a historical monument to an event that began with the bus boycott. Troy State University Montgomery, 252 Montgomery Street, Montgomery. Monday–Friday, 9 a.m.–5 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Admission charged. 334-241-8661 or http://montgomery.troy.edu/rosaparks/museum.

Russell Cave National Monument
Created to preserve the record of more than 9,000 years of habitation in the cave, the museum exhibits artifacts representing the Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian Periods. 3729 County Road 98, Bridgeport. Open daily (except New Year's Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas), 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Free admission. 256-495-2672 or www.nps.gov/ruca.

Samuel Ullman Museum
The museum features Ullman's life works and was created to advance the poet's vision by examining his endeavors and his civic, educational, and religious ideas. 2150 15th Avenue South, by appointment only. Free admission. 934-3328 or http://main.uab.edu/sites/ullmanmuseum.

F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald Museum
The former home of Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald and F. Scott Fitzgerald displays a variety of memorabilia, photographs, Sayre family heirlooms, and period furniture. 919 Felder Avenue Apt. B, Montgomery. Wednesday– Friday, 10 a.m.–2 p.m; Saturday– Sunday, 1–5 p.m. 334-264-4222.

Sixteenth Street Baptist Church
The site of the 1963 bombing that killed four young girls. 1530 Sixteenth Avenue North, Birmingham. Tours, Tuesday–Friday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.–1 p.m. by appointment only. Small donation requested. 251-9402.

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Sloss Furnaces (click for larger version)

Sloss Furnaces
A symbol of the steel industry that built Birmingham is now the setting of festivals and cultural events. Tours available. Downtown Birmingham, 20 32nd Street North. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.; Sunday noon–4 p.m.; also by appointment. Free admission. 324-1911 or www.slossfurnaces.com.

Southern Museum of Flight
A celebration of aviation history, including artifacts from World War II's Tuskegee Airmen, and hundreds of detailed models. 4343 73rd Street North, East Birmingham. Tuesday–Saturday, 9:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Admission charged. 833-8226 or www.southernmuseumofflight.org.

U.S. Space & Rocket Center
Earth's largest space museum, featuring hands-on exhibits, a full-size Space Shuttle, a Saturn V rocket, the actual Apollo 16 capsule, moon rocks, and the Mars Mission motion-based simulator, a 4-G experience up the Space Shot Tower. Off I-565, Huntsville, daily, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Admission charged. 256-837-3400 or www.spacecamp.com/museum.

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The U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville. (click for larger version)

W.C. Handy Birthplace, Museum, and Library
The cabin birthplace of the "Father of the Blues," William Christopher Handy, houses a large collection of Handy's papers and personal memorabilia, including the piano on which he composed "St. Louis Blues,"

his trumpet, and handwritten sheet music. Florence Department of Arts and Museums, 620 West College Street, Florence. Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Admission charged. 256-760-6434 or http://tinyurl.com/wchandy.


Weeden House Museum
The Weeden House, an example of Federal architecture, stands today much as it did when built in 1819. Except for the Civil War years when it was requisitioned for the use of federal officers, the home was occupied by the Weeden family from 1845 to 1956. 300 Gates Avenue Southeast, Huntsville. Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Admission charged. 256-536-7718 or www.museumsusa.org/museums/info/1154473. &

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