The 2020 annual meeting focused on a portion of Shades Valley originally developed for the South & North Alabama Railroad which is now in the Ross Bridge community. A beautifully designed stone culvert, c. 1864, which bridged Shades Creek is all that remains of the original railroad causeway designed to bring iron ore from the Oxmoor Furnaces to Confederate arsenals.
A project of one of Birmingham’s important pioneers, John T. Milner, his railroad led to the founding of Birmingham in December of 1871. Several descendants of Milner’s attended the meeting along with an audience of over a hundred. The history of the area was presented by BHS Director, Marjorie White, and the construction of the bridge was illustrated and discussed by Birgit Kibelka.
The meeting began with a presentation of the strategic plan for BHS by Joe Limbaugh, and was followed by a ‘taste testing’ of eighteen cakes and pies based on a memorable family recipe, organized by Carolanne Roberts. Each entry was accompanied by a family history or story, and many had been baked annually for special occasions or presented as gifts for years!
Cake vrs Pie Competition celebrates baked memories of the past. Dust off that old recipe and bake that cherished and memorable pie or cake! Bring it to the meeting at 4PM at Birmingham Botanical Gardens. We’d love to share it with you, along with the memories! And HERE’S how to join…
Here’s the entry form below. Be sure to include it with your entry!
The Birmingham Historical Society features speakers on Ross Bridge (from Old South to present) and a look at city father John Milner and the Making of Birmingham at its annual meeting February 24 at 7 p.m. in the Strange Auditorium at Birmingham Botanical Gardens.
”The annual meeting will also explore a strategy plan for ‘2020 and Beyond,'” says Marjorie White, the Society’s executive director. “It is also our tradition to release or re-release volumes published by the Birmingham Historical Society. Additionally, this year our annual Heritage Cake Contest expands to include pies–following the judging, all attending members are invited to sample the creations.”
The 2020 meeting presents a re-release of The Birmingham District-An Industrial History and Guide. “This 324-page volume with 377 illustrations is the indispensable guide to the rise of area industry and communities–in it you will find the cultures of iron ore mines, coal mines, and limestone quarries and of geological discoveries and enterprises that resulted.
”First published in 1981, the re-release of this carefully crafted history of Birmingham industry is yet compelling and important to the understanding of our community’s growth.”
Members of the Society receive this year’s book as part of their membership benefits; for all other, the cost is $24.95).
Membership also includes the opportunity to enter the Family Favorites Cake and Pie Contest (entrants may join the Society onsite to participate). “We invite submissions of both cakes and now pies for the first time this year, all a manner of celebrating recipes passed down through families,” says White. “We uncover fascinating stories which harken back to when our ancestors used ‘oleo,’ and tested doneness with broom bristles.”
She adds, “Anyone attending the meeting may join the Society for $40 a year, which includes invitations to events, newsletters and copies of all newly published books.”
The Birmingham District-An Industrial History and Guide] “invites the reader to join in the history of this place…the book gives precise locations of historical places and objects in the county.”