The Drive Thru Museum in Seale, Alabama is known as the world’s first drive thru art and antiques gallery.
The museum is a passion project for artist and collector, Butch Anthony, who is a lover and collector of all things curious. The drive thru museum is an offshoot of Butch’s Museum of Wonder in Seale.
Originally, the Museum of Wonder was Butch’s taxidermy shop and artifact room. Now, it boasts more than 10,000 pieces of art, artifacts, antiques, and strange items. Butch Anthony’s Drive-Thru Museum is just down the road from the Museum of Wonder. So convenient, you don’t even need to leave your car.
The Drive Thru Museum is a one of a kind roadside attraction that’s made from shipping containers. Windows cut into the sides of the containers reveal Butch Anthony’s art, his unique collections and statement pieces.
Mooresville is a charming village situated near the Tennessee River in Limestone County, Alabama. From the moment you arrive, you feel at home and at peace. It’s a bit like stepping back in time.
According to the village website, Mooresville’s history began in 1805 when the first settlers arrived in the area and set up homesteads on lands occupied by the Chickasaw Indians who later ceded the land to the Federal Government. Public land sales began in 1816.
At the time, Limestone County was part of the Alabama Territory. About 4500 people called this area home.
On October 15, 1818, the sixty-two residents of Mooresville petitioned the Alabama Territorial Legislature for an Act of Incorporation, which the Legislature approved within a month. Alabama would become a state one year later, which is why Mooresville villagers refer to their home as “the town older than the state.” Some of the 58 residents of the village are descendants of the original settlers.
Monroeville is best known as the hometown of two famous novelists, Harper Lee and Truman Capote. It’s also hometown to novelist Mark Childress and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Cynthia Tucker. This small south Alabama town, between Mobile and Montgomery, is known as the “Literary Capital of Alabama” and home of the annual Alabama Writers Symposium. A town that “To Kill A Mockingbird” writer, Harper Lee, called home until she died in 2016 at the age of 89.
Scout, Boo Radley, Tom Robinson and Atticus Finch, came to life in this town. Harper’s dad, A. C. Lee, was her inspiration for Atticus. Harper’s childhood friend, Capote, was her inspiration for Dill. They really are the heart and soul of Monroeville, as you can see in the mural near the courthouse square.
Looking for a peaceful and beautiful place to explore? Visit Alabama’s Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville. Exploring the gardens, grotto and beautiful church and chapel is a relaxing experience and offers a peaceful environment for contemplation.
As you walk through what remains of Fort Morgan, you feel as though you can hear echoes of soldiers singing that old song, “Tis a sigh that is wafted across the troubled wave, Tis a wail that is heard upon the shore, Tis a dirge that is murmured around the lowly grave. Oh! Hard times come again no more.”
Some historical highlights from Fort Morgan’s website:
Fort Morgan is a pentagonal fort that was constructed between 1819 and 1834.
The U.S. Army garrisoned Fort Morgan as a staging area for Creek Indians who were being removed to Indian Territory in 1837.
When Alabama politicians prepared to debate secession, the state militia seized Fort Morgan on January 5, 1861, and it remained under Confederate control until August 1864. After the Battle of Mobile Bay, Union land and naval forces subjected Fort Morgan to a siege of more than two weeks before its commanding officer surrendered on August 23, 1864. Although the Corps of Engineers had repaired the severely damaged structure by 1867, it and other harbor defenses languished in the years after the Civil War.
The fort was used as a training facility during World War I, but the War Department declared Morgan obsolete in 1923 and sold it to the state of Alabama in 1927 for use as a state park.
Fort Morgan was briefly activated during World War II to counter the German U-boat threat in the Gulf of Mexico
For over 10 years I’ve had “Visit Gee’s Bend” on my Explore the South bucket list. And this week, I marked that item off my bucket list! While vacationing in my home state of Alabama, I was joined by my mom as we drove from Birmingham to the Black Belt region of the state to Gee’s Bend (known now as Boykin, Alabama). Gee’s Bend is a large bend in the Alabama River. There are about 700 residents in this small, remote, community and most are descendants of slaves. Few people have ever moved out of Gee’s Bend and few have ever moved in. This community has overcome hard times again and again. You can read the history of Gee’s Bend here so you can understand why the residents have such vivid stories to tell through their quilts.
There’s something special about covered bridges. Even the oldest of covered bridges have a picturesque quality to them. Alabama appreciates the beauty of them and even has a Covered Bridge Trail you can drive along to see the 11 remaining historic covered bridges across the state.
One of the bridges on the trail is the Kymulga Covered Bridge in Childersburg, Alabama. The 105 foot covered bridge, built in the 1860s, spans Talladega Creek. Nearby you’ll find the Kymulga Grist Mill, which is still operational. The Kymulga Covered Bridge leads park visitors to a series of nature trails, perfect for romantic walks and exploration of the land that was once populated by Native Americans, farmers and craftsmen. You can learn more about the bridge, mill and events held here throughout the year here.
Take a walk through Wilderness Park in Prattville, Alabama. Wilderness Park is a bamboo forest that was used by the U.S. military for Vietnam-era combat training. The forest provided a humid environment with vegetation more similar to that found in Southeast Asia than most training sites on this continent. Thankfully, the park was preserved as a place of beauty and peace. Areas of the forest have 60-ft.-tall bamboo with trunks 6 inches in diameter. Hundreds of varieties of plants are found here, including one of Alabama’s largest beech trees.