Tuscaloosa County Courthouse Record Preservation

The next meeting of the Tuscaloosa Genealogical Society Night Group will be on Thursday, Oct 4th. They meet the first Thursday night of every month. A topic of discussion will certainly be the preservation of the records in the Tuscaloosa County Courthouse attic. What follows is an open letter from Mike Sullivan to all interested in preserving these records:

Dear Citizens of Tuscaloosa County,

There are many old sayings that help us through life. Good things come to those that are patient. I have worked towards the goal of saving our Historic records for three years this month of Sept. Can someone tell me how long it takes for patience to turn into real work?

You can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar. I got me a whole bunch of dead flies, even a few yellow jackets. Nobody told me there wasn’t a place to trade flies for volunteers.

I reckon my personal favorite is, you can’t be in two places at once. Lots of work might get done when we figure out how to solve that problem. We can then do what we want to do and what we need to do, both at the same time.

Maybe in our fast paced lives we don’t have time to put those time honored phases to use anymore. We’re the generation that created TGIF and ROFL. So can we slow down enough to use single words anymore?

What about publicity? My wife gets mad at me when after she shrieks “to let the show get back on” and I remind her there is a reason why it’s called commercial TV. Nobody reading this hasn’t been annoyed with junk mail in their mailbox or on the computer and I’ll only mention pop-up ads.

So we know what publicity is and somebody out there knows how to use it. Yet, how often have we heard of something after the fact and said “I wish I had of known about that”. “I would have helped or I would have liked to have been there”.

That’s the best thing you can do for our old records for the next few weeks. Just talk about them. You might not have time to come work on them yourself, but I bet you know somebody that might like too. Have you told anyone about how our history is rotting away in the attic of the courthouse? Well, tell’em again and tell’em to tell somebody else!

What I wish ya’ll would tell ever’body is that the Tuscaloosa Genealogical Society Night Group has been looking into preserving our old records for quite sometime but they need help from every avenue. The Society is not only seeking a building to work on the records but to make plans, they need to know how many people will help and when you can help.

We have a great opportunity right now to not only do something for ourselves today but create something beneficial for the future. The whole point in preserving anything is to make it useful to everyone in the future. Please don’t allow our history to continue to just sit and rot away.

The next meeting of the Tuscaloosa Genealogical Society Night Group will be on Thursday, Oct 4th. They meet the first Thursday night of every month. Please come and ask your questions of who, what, how and when? Meet the planners face to face and thank them for the work they are doing. Then tell them what you can do to help.

At the Sept 6th meeting, there was a volunteer list passed around. With 30 people present, 14 people signed up to help. This is a great start but our old records will need help by the 10’s of dozens. Maybe more! Such projects never seem to have enough help.

Reckon it is because not enough people were told about things they would like to be involved with? Don’t wait until later to tell someone about this project. Tell’em today! Tell’em tomorrow! Tell’em next week and tell’em to tell somebody else.

I would get back to patiently catching flies and figuring out how to be in two places at once but while ROFL I remembered the word commitment. Now that word might help. Take care.

Bye, Mike
Homewood, AL

Other related links and posts:

BGS Blog Record Preservation Posts

DearMyrtle’s latest post regarding the Tuscaloosa Records


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