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Ask Rufus: Choctaw baskets

Posted 11/15/2014 in Local Columns

"Since time memorial the Choctaw Indians have lived in Mississippi, and have made baskets of the reed cane which grows in the swamps of the south." So begins a ca. 1920 letter from Mrs. J.E. Arnold, a Baptist missionary to the Choctaw in Union.

 

Ask Rufus: The mystery of Mrs. Canant

Posted 11/8/2014 in Local Columns

It is a simple marble military headstone in a sea of more than a thousand white marble military headstones. It is not a soldier, though, who is buried there.

 

Ask Rufus: Forever lost

Posted 11/1/2014 in Local Columns

I recall years ago that Greenpeace had a T-shirt out with a dinosaur pictured on it. The text around the dinosaur said, "Extinct means forever."

 

Ask Rufus: Ghosts of the Tombigbee

Posted 10/25/2014 in Local Columns

With all the ghost stories around it is surprising that there are not more ghostly tales about the Tombigbee River.

 

Ask Rufus: It was 75 years ago

Posted 10/18/2014 in Local Columns

We are fast approaching some important anniversary dates.

 

Ask Rufus: A walk down the street

Posted 10/11/2014 in Local Columns

The past six weeks I have been teaching a MUW Life Enrichment course on the architectural history of Columbus.

 

Ask Rufus: The high style of James Lull

Posted 10/4/2014 in Local Columns

James Lull was a Vermont born, Philadelphia trained architect who was responsible for many of most impressive buildings in mid-19th century Columbus.

 

Ask Rufus: Mississippi MASH

Posted 9/20/2014 in Local Columns

Among my all time favorite books, movies and television shows is one that transcends all three media. It's M*A*S*H, the classic story of the 4077 Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) during the Korean War. Many people do not realize the Mississippi ties to the events upon which the original book was based.

 

Ask Rufus: The Coming of Greek Revival

Posted 9/13/2014 in Local Columns

When people think of antebellum homes in the South it is generally an image of a large Greek Revival style house that comes to mind.

 

Ask Rufus: Air Force roots run deep

Posted 9/6/2014 in Local Columns

The roots of the U.S. Air Force run very deep in the Golden Triangle.

 

Ask Rufus: The Legacy of Black Prairie Blues

Posted 8/30/2014 in Local Columns

Blues is a great unifier. A week ago there was a horrible incident in West Point that threatened to create divisions within the community. However, on Friday night in West Point, blues brought people of all sizes, shapes and colors, from all over the United States and even several foreign countries together.

 

Ask Rufus: The early Federal houses of Columbus

Posted 8/23/2014 in Local Columns

During the first years of Columbus' growth and expansion, some early settlers tried to bring a little of the refinement of the east coast to the new town.

 

Ask Rufus: Green corn and dancing under a full moon

Posted 8/16/2014 in Local Columns

Last week there was a spectacular full moon. The news media called it a super moon. While its size and the earth's being at its closest point to the moon might justify the name, it actually was the Green Corn Moon.

 

Ask Rufus: The raised-cottages of Columbus, a cultural intersection

Posted 8/9/2014 in Local Columns

In examining the historic architecture of Columbus, the earliest houses other than log houses are the vernacular raised-cottage and the late Federal style.

 

Ask Rufus: De Soto's footprints

Posted 8/3/2014 in Local Columns

It's been almost 474 years since Hernando de Soto dined on barbecue pork in the Black Prairie just west of the Tombigbee River.

 

Ask Rufus: Columbus' early log houses

Posted 7/26/2014 in Local Columns

As might be expected, the earliest houses constructed in the upper Tombigbee River Valley were constructed mostly of log. The term "log cabin," though, is not a very good description of many of the log structures that were built.

 

Ask Rufus: The irrepressible Uncle Bunky

Posted 7/19/2014 in Local Columns

Last week my granddaughter who lives in Virginia visited Columbus. While here I took her to experience those delightful "crazy animals" from the hand of Robert Williams, the pioneering icon of children's television known far and wide as Uncle Bunky.

 

Ask Rufus: A mixing of cultures

Posted 7/12/2014 in Local Columns

The site where Columbus now sits has for hundreds of years been a cultural crossroads.

 

Ask Rufus: Gardens of 'Youth and Old Age'

Posted 6/28/2014 in Local Columns

Gardens around the South are filled each summer with beautiful multicolored zinnias.

 

Ask Rufus: Did the buffalo roam?

Posted 6/23/2014 in Local Columns

I have often been asked, "If the Black Prairie really is a prairie, were there once buffalo around here?"

 

 

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