Madonna and Child with Saint John and Three Angels, ca. 1500, by Sebastiano
Mainardi, Italy, tempera on panel, Kress Collections of Renaissance Art,
Birmingham Museum of Art.(Courtesy Birmingham Museum of Art)
1999, Issue 52
Article Abstracts and Supplements
Birmingham and the Picture Postcard
By James L. Baggett
Around the turn of the century, if one wanted to dash off a quick note to a friend, the fashionable thing to do was to send a picture postcard. But the invention of the picture postcard not only brought about a convenient, inexpensive way to communicate by mailit also helped to preserve history. James L. Baggett, Birmingham Public Library archivist, discusses how postcards have become a form of historical documentation as well as a collectible. Photographs of picture postcards depicting Birmingham at the turn of the century accompany the article. Other sources for information on postcards can be found on the "Postcard Resources Page" (See our Alabama Links Page). provides links to nearly two hundred websites for clubs, dealers, auctions, collectors, and postcard exhibits. Alabamians may be especially interested in "Historic Postcards of Alabama: A Portion of the Sturdivant Hall Collection."
Paint Rock Valley
By John Scott, Jr.
Photographs by Anderson Scott
Separated from the hustle and bustle of large Alabama cities, in the northeastern part of the state lies Paint Rock Valley in Jackson County. In the early 1800s, pioneers were drawn to this "little sister to Virginias Shenandoah," with the numbers increasing after 1819, the year in which the Cherokees were forced to cede most of their lands to the U.S. government. Author John Scott describes the history and development of Paint Rock Valley and the people who inhabited the area, from the early years through the Civil War, the coming of the Tennessee Valley Authority, and World War II, up to the issues faced by the area today. Evocative photographs by Anderson Scott of the valleys mountains and streams accompany the article.
Mobiles Architectural Dynasty: The Hutchisson Family, 1835-1969
by John Sledge
In 1835, a young builder from Long Island, New York, newly widowed, landed in Mobile, Alabama, with his five-year-old son, hoping to make a new start. The builder, James Flandin Hutchisson, not only secured for himself a better future but began a line of architect descendants who would follow in his footsteps, with four generations of Hutchissons building more than twelve hundred of Mobile's structures. Architectural historian John Sledge tells the story of this remarkable family and their rise to become extraordinary and prolific architects who literally helped build the port city of Mobile. While fewer than two hundred of the Hutchisson structures remain standing today, the family built almost every type of structure the booming Southern town needed, including schools, churches, stores, warehouses, and homes.