August 14, 2012 9:55:52 AM
This letter is in response to the move to rename Catfish Alley here in Columbus. I am very much interested because I have been in and around Columbus for 80 years. When I was a kid growing up, the boys would make a homemade shoe-shine box and head for that popular place called Catfish Alley.
When we would mention Catfish Alley our parents would always know where we were. Once there you could smell the frying fish and see the fresh fish being sold.
The name Catfish Alley was and now is the perfect, unadulterated name for its place in Columbus. It was well known to the black and white families and visitors from out of town.
Also, the hard working farm hands would come to Catfish Alley on the weekend for a change of scenery with a chance to enjoy refreshments, blues, music and dancing. This was all wholesome entertainment for them in this part of town for the blacks. They would come and go with a renewed mind and spirit.
So why would anyone want to alter this historical Catfish Alley name when it has clearly earned a permanent name for itself? We all should know that a genuine name always defines the character and from the past make claims for the future. This unprecedented action to make this change, the Catfish Alley name, would be like taking sweetening out of a ginger cake. If done it will never have the same taste or smell. In other words, the name alteration would cause Catfish Alley to loose its perfection, its purity.
Let's not forget that time changes things, but it does not change history, therefore, we need to present the true original name of Catfish Alley, so we can always look back and be proud of this bit of history that is part of our beloved City of Columbus.
Sanders Weatherby Sr.