May 15, 2010 9:01:00 PM
The name "Tan Yard Park" is very fitting because of its historical background. Even the location is right. From my research in the Columbus-Lowndes County Library archives and from the archives in Jackson, I discovered that an African-American by the name of William Cooper owned and operated the first store in Columbus between the years of 1817-1819. The store was where the farmers'' market is today. It was first known as the Tanning Yard because a lot of animal hides were sold there. The Indians and other Europeans traded quite a bit with Mr. Cooper. The Indians referred to him as the "big black tanner." The name of the location changed from the Tanning Yard, the Hitch Lot to the Farmer''s Market. There is also information about William Cooper showcased at Plymouth Bluff research center (Harry Logan Sherman conference Building) on Old West Point Road.
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