BGS Meeting — March 24, 2012 — Counterfeiters in Alabama

The Birmingham Genealogical Society meets the fourth Saturday of each month (ex. Nov. & Dec.) at the Downtown Birmingham Public Library. Guests are always welcome!

Next meeting: Saturday, March 24th at 2 p.m.; Board Meeting at 1:15 p.m.

Meeting Room: Arrington Auditorium, 4th Floor, Linn-Henley Building

Speaker:  Miriam Fowler

Program Topic: Counterfeiters in Alabama

Many early Alabama settlers were running from something in a checkered past looking for a new start. When Tom Davis arrived in Alabama he was not looking to change his ways but he was running from the law in Georgia. He had broken jail in 1816 in Warren County after being arrested for passing counterfeit money and found refuge in Brown’s Valley in Blount County among the renegade Creeks, Cherokees and white outlaws hiding from the law. From newspaper accounts giving warnings of the circulation of bogus money, it is believed that Davis worked his counterfeit gang all up and down the East Coast in the early 1800s. By his own words, “he had been 38 years engaged in that business during which time he had made from $600,000 to $1,000,000.” Some of the men associated with him and Alabama may have been involved in other places as well, but maybe seem to have been a personal charisma that drew to him all that had a bent for larceny. So it was not difficult to find men to help him operate his counterfeiting ring in Alabama. Please join us as Miriam Fowler presents “Counterfeiters in Alabama.”

Hodges Cemetery in Mt. Olive Threatened by Development

Hodges Cemetery is located on Hodges Cemetery Road in Mt. Olive. It dates to at least 1887 and was started by W. L. Hodges. Kathy Hodges Young, a descendant, is working to preserve and maintain the cemetery. There are currently 33 marked burials, but it is believed there could be 133-135 total burials.

Read about the challenges Ms. Young is facing to keep the family cemetery safe in the Birmingham News article here.

Civil War Graveyard in Tuscaloosa County to be Moved

Near the town of Vance, Evans Cemetery will be moved to make way for a new industrial park. According to the article, they will move the cemetery sometime later this summer.

Read the full article in the Tuscaloosa News

Click Here for article

Additional information from BGS Vice-President, Scott Martin:

The Birmingham News, 19 June 2007

Vance plans to relocate the remains of a small Civil War cemetery late this summer as part of its efforts to build a municipal park. The Evans Cemetery may hold the remains of several Union and one unidentified Confederate soldier who were killed during the Battle of Trion toward the end of the Civil War. In woods between U.S. Highway 11 and Wire Road, the cemetery is part of about 40 acres that the city purchased from the Wallace Tingle family. For the 19th century remains to be relocated to nearby Vance Cemetery will require legal advertising, a license from the Alabama Historical Commission and the hiring of a licensed funeral home or registered archaeologist,. Mayor Keith Mahaffey states this will happen late this summer.

This article has not made it “online” yet – I will post a link to the article as soon as I find it.

Melissa

Alabama Cemetery Preservation Bill Approved!!!

From the Alabama Cemetery Preservation Alliance website:

Legislature Passes and Governor Signs on June 14, 2007. It will become LAW in the FALL (date to be announced).

(1) This Bill addresses the problem of landlocked Cemeteries by authorizing certain persons to access cemeteries on privately owned land or leased property.

(2) This Bill also authorizes County and Municipal governments to form cemetery authorities to preserve neglected cemeteries within their jurisdiction.

As we find more details, I will post updates to the blog.

Adding a link to the Senate Bill:

Senate Bill proposed in May 2007