Thursday, March 31, 2016

Dothan, AL (3/29/16)

Dothan is a town in southeast Alabama, population around 65,000.  I've traveled through it many times on the way to some other place, but never stopped.  For several years, I've been aware that Dothan is home to the Whispering Giant for the state of Alabama, but I just never made the effort required to search for it.  Driving a motor home towing a vehicle can be a dicey proposition in narrow downtown streets, and you never know when parked cars or a dead end will cause some grief.  However, I figured this may be my last opportunity, since I'm heading west for good (hopefully) and don't expect to see Dothan again.  So, I found an RV park near town and spent the night.  I set up camp early enough to visit the Whispering Giant.  While registering, I told the woman why I was here.  She was not even aware of the statue or its significance, so I told her the story.  She then mentioned I might be interested in the town's murals and gave me a brochure with a map and description of all fifteen murals.  Naturally, I visited and photographed most of the murals, which I thought were very important in telling the history of this town.

First, the Whispering Giant, fifth in Peter Toth's series of 77 tributes to American Indians.  As in Colquitt, the Dothan statue is well presented in a small garden area near the library.  It's the only one I've seen with a backdrop, which is made of logs stuck in the ground.
Whispering Giant

Whispering Giant
Dothan's murals are mostly on St. Andrews St. in the heart of downtown.  Many are beginning to fade, so I hope something will be done to preserve them.  They depict a variety of historical and cultural events that might otherwise be lost.
Ray Charles & Others

Tribute To The Railroad

Tribute To The Cotton Industry

Tribute To The Logging Industry

Tribute To George Washington Carver & Peanuts
Tribute To A Tuskegee Airman

Tribute To The Creek Indians
Fort Scott Protected Early Settlers
 Most folks are too young to remember Johhny Mack Brown, but he was a famous movie star who appeared in more than 160 films between 1927 and 1966, plus a few TV shows.  Before his film career, Brown starred on the Dothan High football team and went on to star for Alabama's Crimson Tide.  He is in the College Football Hall of Fame.  
Tribute To Johnny Mack Brown

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