Category Archives: Birmingham Historical Society

TIME TO RENEW MEMBERSHIP

Several changes were approved at the last board meeting including a slight increase in membership fees. Your generous membership fees and gifts pay for research, publications, society events, annual book signings, tours, newsletters, and educational events. We encourage you to renew your membership or join us now! For more information, please click HERE. Note that our membership year runs concurrently with the calendar year, January 1st to December 31st and membership renewals are now due. Thank you for your support!

Some Historical Perspective on Covid-19

Covid-19 is not Birmingham’s first epidemic. For a little historical perspective, and some information on how Birmingham coped in the past, please read our current newsletter! It includes memories of those who experienced the Spanish Flu of 1918.

continue reading here > Pandemic 2020

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Grandmother’s Garden at Sloss

This Facebook video created by Lisa Jones of Jefferson County – Alabama Extension – shares details surrounding the beginning and evolution of Grandmother’s Garden at Birmingham Historical Society’s headquarters at Sloss Quarters. Narrated in part by BHS Director, Marjorie White, the video also pays tribute to retiring longtime Urban Regional Jefferson County extension agent, Sallie Lee, as well as master gardener volunteers who have helped plant and maintain the garden since its beginnings fifteen years ago.

For a look at some of the native plant materials included in the garden, please refer to BHS publication, Pretty Posies, Healing Powers –An Herbal Primer

This Old House Research

The research volunteers at Birmingham Historical Society are committed to providing education not only about Birmingham’s history, but generic information that’s useful to everyone. So BHS was delighted to hear from a youth services librarian and educator at G.A.T.E. DENVER CHILDREN’S COALITION who was able to use our online resources and educational programs for a virtual beginner research class over the past several months.

In return, she provided us with a helpful link her students had also been using entitled GUIDE TO RESEARCHING THE HISTORY OF A HOUSE which is helpful to anyone who has an interest in learning about family history or their home. Thank you to the students of G.A.T.E. for providing us with this link that has now been added to our list of resources!

And thank you for sharing your mission statement, “Learning doesn’t begin and end at the classroom door. The world is a classroom.” You are on your way to becoming lifelong researchers!

Altamont – A Portion of Red Mountain and its Park

Long time residents of Birmingham know that the Altamont ridge has one of the best views in the city, a forested overlook perched 400 feet above Jones Valley.

But did you know that Boston architect, George H. Miller, originally created a plan for the Altamont ridge in 1911, specifically providing for both public and private forested views? In fact, the guiding principal, reiterated in an interview by City Forester Hugh Sloss in 1931, was that:

“Altamont Park was intended to remain a natural, forested green space, enhanced only by selective cleaning and pruning. It was conceived as a neighborhood park, whereas Altamont Road, one link in an imagined longer parkway, was meant for the enjoyment of all of Birmingham’s citizens and visitors. Furthermore, preserving as much vegetation as possible on the north face of Red Mountain allows the City of Birmingham to retain its most notable and defining natural feature.”

Read the entire history in Birmingham Historical Society’s latest publication, Altamont – A Portion of Red Mountain and Its Park. Or click image below to order a copy.