Thursday, June 30, 2011

Roadside Attraction #2

Growing up in North Alabama, the biggest influence in my childhood was storytelling. My Dad is a great storyteller and he has kept the family oral history alive. There are stories from bootlegging to preaching and war to love. He also told us ghost stories. And I don't know anyone I grew up with that didn't have a copy of 13 Alabama Ghosts and Jeffrey. The author, Kathryn Tucker Windham, died a couple of weeks ago at the age of 93, born the same year my grandmother was born. She is the quintessential Southern ghost storyteller. She wrote many books and stories and is best known for 13 Alabama Ghosts, as well as 13 Georgia ghosts and 13 Mississippi Ghosts. There are some great interviews with her by AlabamasGhostTrail.

Each story is a perfect Roadside attraction. Anytime we were driving near one of the Alabama towns, we stopped to see the place of the story, the face in the courthouse window in Carrollton, the unfilled hole in Camden, among others.

Go grab a copy of 13 Alabama Ghosts and Jeffrey at your favorite local bookseller, read it to your kids, take it on a roadtrip. Keep the stories alive.

To Kathryn Tucker Windham, thanks for all you have given us. The stories will live on.

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