The Whitfield-Murray Historical Society, in cooperation with area churches, is sponsoring a special gospel singing school on Saturday, May 3 at the Old Spring Place Methodist Church. The school will begin at 9:30 a.m. and continue until 3 p.m. with lunch provided. There is no charge for the session, but donations will be accepted.
The teacher for the school will be veteran music teacher, composer, singer Charles Towler of Cleveland, Tennessee. Author of such songs as “I Just Can’t Praise Him Enough” and “His Blood Has Made Us One,” Towler was a longtime employee of Tennessee Music and Printing Company and Pathway Press in Cleveland. He has done countless programs on the history of southern gospel music, including several for the local historical society. Today he heads Gospel Heritage Music Company, leads the Gospel Heritage Quartet, continues to write, and teaches music wherever and whenever he can. He was recently honored at the Harmony Awards in Nashville, Tennessee for his work with the famous Church Hymnal.
The singing school will focus on sight-reading, ear training, and the famous four –part harmony for which this music is noted. Mr. Towler will include some instruction in the “syllables” and shaped notes that caused an explosion in singing a century ago. Whether you have musical training or just want to learn, the school will be great experience.
Gospel singing has long been an important part of religious life in north Georgia and Murray County still hosts a quarterly singing convention at Smyrna Baptist Church. The next session will be Saturday, June 28 at 7 p.m. Other churches supporting the singing school are Mt. Carmel, Mountain View, and Casey Springs Methodist. Murray County will also host the 2014 Georgia State Gospel Singing Convention on October 10-11. For more information call 706-695-2740.
Historical Society Offers Local History Class
“Murray on My Mind”, a class focusing on the study of Murray County’s past and present will once again be offered by the Whitfield-Murray Historical Society and the Murray County Schools. The class, first taught in 1986, takes participants to all parts of Murray County from Tennga and Little Murray to Carters and Bull Pen. Visits to a number of historic buildings, cemeteries, and sites have made the class very popular. Community members and school personnel alike are invited to take part. (Four PLU’s are available for school personnel.)
When: June 2-6, from 8:00-3:00 each day
Where: Meet at the Old Spring Place Methodist Church on Elm Street in Spring Place (just off Hwy 225 South)
Fee: $35 payable to the Whitfield-Murray Historical Society, 329 Hwy 225 South, Chatsworth, GA 30705
The Whitfield-Murray Historical Society announces the 2014 Guidelines and Information for its Student Scholarships in Local History which are given out annually to students attending the six area public high schools: Coahulla Creek High School, Dalton High School, Murray County High School, North Murray High School, Northwest Whitfield High School, and Southeast Whitfield High School. Students must be seniors who hold good academic records and plan to continue their studies beyond the high school level.
Applications and guidelines have been provided to the six high schools; all information is now available from the guidance offices and the social studies teachers at each school. Completed applications, photos, and copies of original research are due no later than Friday, 28 March 2014 to the Whitfield-Murray Historical Society.
The Scholarship Committee of the Whitfield-Murray Historical Society will meet in early April to consider applicants and to select recipients. More than one award may be given at each school. Selection will be made early enough so that awards may be presented at each high school’s spring awards ceremony. As well as the scholarship, each recipient will also be given a year’s free membership in the Whitfield-Murray Historical Society.
The awards at each of the six public high schools are named in honor or in memory of educators, community leaders, and Whitfield-Murray Historical Society leaders, as follows:
Coahulla Creek High School—In honor of Dr. Don Thomas and Mrs. Judy Alderman. Dr. Don has operated a successful medical practice for over 50 years. He served 14 years in the state Senate; he served 12 years on the Whitfield Co. Board of Education, with 10 years as chairman. Mrs. Alderman established the Prater’s Mill Foundation and the Prater’s Mill Country Fair that have preserved historic 1855 Prater’s Mill. Both Dr. Thomas and Mrs. Alderman are trustees of the Historical Society.
Dalton High School--In memory of Marion (Pete) Sims and in honor of Mary Gene Sims Dykes. Mr. Sims was one of the organizers of the reactivated Historical Society in 1976 and aided both in obtaining the use of the old Crown Cotton Mill office building as headquarters for the Society and also in starting the archives. Mrs. Dykes is a past president of WMHS and a longtime volunteer for all things historic in the area.
Murray County High School--In memory of James Loughridge and Nell Ruth Loughridge. Mr. Loughridge was actively involved in the Murray County Schools, serving as chairman of the board of education. He was also a Historical Society member. Mrs. Loughridge was both a graduate of and a longtime faculty member at Murray High. She was an early president of the Whitfield-Murray Historical Society. She assisted with the compiling of the Murray County history and helped organize the Friends of the Vann House as well as serving as one of its trustees for several years.
North Murray High School—In honor of Paul Ross. Paul has been a vital part of the WMHS for nearly three decades as well as a vital part of the Murray County business community even longer. As past chairman of the Wright Hotel Committee and the Society's Board of Trustees, Paul has promoted historic preservation both personally and professionally.
Northwest Whitfield High School--In memory of Dorothy Sapp Seaton. Mrs. Seaton was a former educator in the Whitfield County Schools and a longtime supporter of the schools. From 1976-78, she served as the first president of the reactivated Historical Society. She headed the committee that wrote History of Whitfield County.
Southeast Whitfield High School--In memory of I. V. Chandler and in honor of Mr. Marvin Sowder. Mr. Chandler was a former principal of Valley Point High School who became a pioneer in the textile industry. Mr. Sowder is the point-person for Civil War sites and information in the northwest Georgia area as well as a trustee for the Historical Society.
The scholarships will be awarded at the WMHS meeting on Sunday, May 18, 2014, at 2:30 p.m. at the Crown Gardens Archives and History Center.
The Historic Murray County Calendar for 2014 is on sale now at the following locations: Pat’s Antiques, First National Community Bank of Chatsworth, and the WMHS Archives and History Center in Dalton. The theme for 2014 is “People and Places” and the cost is $7.00. All money earned goes toward the preservation of the Historic Wright Hotel in Chatsworth and is its only fundraiser at this time.
Several older copies from previous years are also available for 25 – 50 cents each at both Pat’s Antiques and the WMHS Archives now and at the Wright Hotel when tours are conducted in the spring and fall. These calendars are a wonderful way to enjoy a personal collection of the history of Murray County in pictures.
Be sure to purchase yours today and take a walk through the history of several “People and Places” of Murray County in the pages of the new 2014 calendar. The Wright Hotel Committee and the WMHS thank you!
Whitfield-Murray Historical Society 2014 Wall Calendars
The WMHS has 2014 wall calendars that feature events, structures, and personalities tied to the Dalton area during the Civil War years. Each month has a photo or illustration with a brief summary of the story behind it. The full story can be found in WMHS publications.
A tintype of Reuben Harrison Nations is featured on the cover. Other personalities appearing in the calendar are General Joseph E. Johnston, Dr. Mary Edwards Walker, Joseph Franklin Ballenger Jackson, Tilman Howard Pitner, Dr. John Fergus Groves, and General William J. Hardee. Also featured: The great snowball fight, corduroy roads, Chester House, homes used as headquarters, and the General locomotive.
These make wonderful keepsakes. Sold at the Crown Gardens & Archives and Pat's Antiques in Chatsworth for $8.00 each. Your purchase helps the WMHS continue its work preserving local history for future generations. Thanks for your support. For more information call 706 278-0217 between 10-5, T-F and 9-1 Saturdays.
Alder Wood Ornament
Engraved Alder wood ornament depicting our latest property the Cook-Huff House c. 1857. Only $15.00 the dimensions are 4x3.5-inches, available at the Crown Gardens & Archives. The artwork was made from a 1913 photograph that is engraved onto the wood. This makes a perfect “stocking stuffer” gift that also supports a worthy cause. Your purchase helps the WMHS continue its work preserving local history for future generations. Thank you for your support!
A: On December 29, 1847, Edward White chartered the city of Dalton and named it in honor of his grandfather Senator Tristam Dalton and his mother Mary Dalton White of Newburyport, MA. White was sent to purchase land along the railroad in Cross Plains for a New England investment syndicate he represented.