Selma preservation society plans meeting

Published 5:12 pm Monday, May 25, 2015

The Selma and Dallas County Historic Preservation Society is opening its doors to all who’d like to learn more about saving the Black Belt’s greatest jewels.

The society will hold its annual meeting at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church’s Lower Parish Hall on May 28 at 6 p.m.

Information regarding the society’s development will be shared. A guest speaker will be present to share knowledge about preserving some of the state’s most important structures. Refreshments will be served at the meeting.

Just as members are welcome, so is the public. Selma Dallas County Historic Preservation Society President Jewell Williamson said the society welcomes and encourages anyone who is interested in preservation of West Alabama to attend. She said individuals don’t even have to live in the Black Belt in order to attend the meeting.

“The projects we take on or tackle are for the good of the community,” Williamson said. “We’d like to involve as many people as we can because we’re in the business of saving structures.”

The guest speaker will be Dr. Tina Naremore Jones, who is the Dean of Education Outreach at the University of West Alabama and serves as President of the Alabama Trust for Historic Preservation. She obtained both her bachelors and masters degrees in English from Livingston University, which is now the University of West Alabama. Also, she has a PhD. in American Literature from the University of Southern Mississippi. Jones garnered a fervid interest in the Black Belt and preservation after writing her dissertation about Ruby Pickenss Tarrt, a noted Alabama folklorist.

Hopefully, participants will take heed to Jones’s words and listen to her ideas on preservation, Williamson said. She said Jones has a lot of knowledge about areas that interest the region.

“They will gain some Black Belt and West Alabama history,” she said. “We just thought it would be a good thing to get a different view. We want to hear what she has to say because it might give us some ideas.”