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Destination DixieTourism and Southern History$
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Karen L. Cox

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780813042374

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813042374.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 08 April 2020

Calhoun County, Alabama

Calhoun County, Alabama

Confederate Iron Furnaces and the Remaking of History

(p.204) 9 Calhoun County, Alabama
Destination Dixie

John Walker Davis

Jennifer Lynn Gross

University Press of Florida

John Walker Davis and Jennifer Lynn Gross tell the story of white residents in the town of Ohatchee, Alabama, who developed a local celebration of the Civil War centered on the preservation of an iron furnace that never produced any iron for southern armies. Yet, it was the link to the Confederacy that led supporters—many of them from Confederate heritage organizations—to create the “Ohatcheefest.” As Davis and Gross demonstrate, this annual tourist attraction ignores the significant history of African Americans in this area of Alabama, including that of the former slaves who built the furnace. The story of Calhoun County’s Ohatcheefest proves that here, as in other areas of the South, history and memory are often contested along the fault line of race.

Keywords:   Ohatchee, Alabama, Ohatcheefest, African Americans, Civil War, iron furnace, contested histories, contested memories, race, slaves, Confederate heritage

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