By LAUREN METZLER
Special to Atmore News
Did you know a man named William Carney is considered to be the “Father of Atmore?” Do you know why Atmore’s middle school was once called a training school or when the Thanksgiving Pow-Wow began?
Our Youth Leadership Atmore class found the answers to these questions and others as we learned about the history and culture of Atmore on Wednesday, January 11.
We began our day with a delicious, old-fashioned breakfast of biscuits and sausage gravy.
After breakfast, our tour of Atmore’s history began. A fabulous presentation of the Carney family, who started the development of Atmore, was given by Ms. Linda Ellison. This was followed by an adventurous hayride tour of multiple historical sites in Atmore led by the Chamber’s director Sheryl Vickery.
At lunchtime, PCI transportation took us to Gaines Chapel AME Church for an amazing home-cooked meal by Ms. Brenda Watkins. There, we learned about our African-American history of Atmore presented by Ms. Sandra Gray.
Our final visit was to the Poarch Band of Creek Indians Cultural Museum. A wonderful tour by Mr. Robert Thrower educated us on how the life of the Creeks began in Atmore.
As I look back on this informative day in Atmore, I think about all the different families and backgrounds that form our little town. All of these backgrounds play an important role in the history of Atmore. From William Carney who saw the potential to build a city and industry with the plentiful pine trees and Cyprus ponds, to the midwives in our African-American culture who delivered and even helped raise babies, to our Poarch creek tribal men who fought to keep their place in our town, each part of this history contributes to the thriving town we have today.
We (the Youth Leadership Atmore students) are extremely grateful to all the people that generously gave their time and effort to help us learn about the history and culture of Atmore. Let’s continue to make it a welcoming and thriving town!