Jones to be focus of Writer’s Forum

Published 9:55pm Monday, April 22, 2013

The name Catesby ap R. Jones may sound familiar to Selmians probably because Jones was a key player in the Civil War as a Confederate commander in the navy. Jones eventually was sent to Selma to supervise the production of guns and weaponry for the confederacy.

Dr. Maurice Melton who is currently the associate history professor at Albany State University in Albany, Ga will be presenting his writings on Catesby ap R. Jones and his work for the confederacy in Selma during the annual Writer’s Forum — one of many scheduled events for the Battle of Selma weekend.

Thursday, April 25 at 5:30 p.m. all are invited to convene in the Carneal ArtsRevive building at 3 Church St. for the Writer’s Forum. Organizer Jessica Hammonds said the event will be casual and those in the audience can ask questions about the author’s research and light refreshments will be provided.

“This year the Writer’s Forum will be a small gathering and it’s going to be one author with a table setup where he can have some of his writings and books on display,” Hammonds said about Dr. Melton.  “He will give a brief introduction and then we will give him about 30 minutes to read some of his work and do question and answer session from the audience.”

Melton wrote about the Selma Naval Gun Foundry after his interest was sparked in doing his doctoral dissertation on major Confederate government defense plants, Melton said.

“There were three in Selma — the Naval Gun Foundry, the Army Arsenal and the Navy’s shipyard.  I had time to work on one — the gun foundry,” Melton said. “Now that I’ve completed and published my work on the Savannah Squadron, I’m back at work on the defense plants project, with a view of publishing a book on that topic.”

Melton said he is interested in meeting people who may have more information on the topic as he digs into researching those facilities in Selma.

Melton wrote the program, “Catesby ap R. Jones and the Selma Naval Gun Foundry,” Pensacola, Fla. Civil War Round Table, Oct. 2012 and countless other programs about history in the south and Jones’ role in the war.

Melton wrote, “ The Best Station of Them All: The Savannah Squadron, 1861-1865” Tuscaloosa: The University of Alabama Press 2012.

To learn more about the legendary Selma historical figure Catesby ap R. Jones and the gun foundry and aresenal during the war, attend this year’s Writer’s Forum.

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