Tuscumbia, Alabama, is the birthplace of Helen Keller, who was born in 1880, to Captain Arthur H. and Kate Adams Keller. The house, built c.1820-1830 by Helen Keller's grandparents David and Mary Fairfax Moore Keller, who were related to Robert E. Lee and a direct descendents of Virginia's early colonial governor, Alexander Spotswood, who built the Governor's Palace at Williamsburg, Virginia. The name of the house, Ivy Green, came from the abundance of English Ivy which once covered the grounds. At 19 months, Helen was sickened with a disease which left her deaf and blind. At the age of six, the wild child was taken to see Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, and as a result Anne Sullivan was hired as her teacher. The teacher had her hands full with a child that couldn’t hear or see. The break through came as Ms. Sullivan held Helen’s hands under the water pump and the word water came from her lips.
The story at the water pump was imortalized by playwright William Gibson. "The Miracle Worker" was made into a movie in 1962 with Patty Duke portraying Helen Keller and Anne Bancroft as Anne Sullivan.
Helen Keller’s home is now preserved as a museum. Each year in June and going into July, "The Miracle Worker" is presented at the home on Friday and Saturday nights. The Helen Keller Festival honoring Keller takes place each year at the end of June. This year the festival is at Spring Park in Tuscumbia is from June 23 to June 26. Family entertainment, consisting of arts and crafts, concerts, bike rides, runs, a street dance, story time, dancing waters and the Miracle Worker play fill the four days of the festival. Admission to the event is three whole dollars. So if you can take time to visit for a day or two or three, check out the events going on. Be sure to bring a lawn chair with you to sit a spell.
If you can’t make for the Helen Keller festival, check out the W. C. Handy Music Festival which takes place in the Shoals area from July 22 to July 31. W. C. Handy the Father of the Blues is a native son of Florence, Alabama. Music events take place all over the Shoals area from small venues, libraries, parks and theaters. Bring a lawn chair and just take it easy while listening to great music. My favorite is the concert at the Tennessee River on Friday night.
Since Mom and I shaved the inch thick fur off of Patches neck, she has been staying at home at night. I noticed Blackie getting closer and closer to the underground fence and meant to change her collar battery. Thursday when I got home, I didn’t see her. Patches was really irritated and kept running to me and back down to the creek barking. Blackie was hot on the trail of a critter and Patches was squealing on her since she couldn’t get out.
The hooligans have been relatively quiet since the great escapes staying in the shade and trying to waller in my newly planted bed of ‘Tiger’s eye’ daylily under my Auburn sign and a few other moist areas. Anti- Hooligan measures were taken.
The power pole the utility truck was holding up finally was replaced this weekend, so no more wondering how long it’s going to hold up the pole. The weather has just been crazy here. First a northern type winters, then spring, then fall and now temperatures have been August like running close to 100 degrees. I haven’t had rain since the storm three weeks ago. Even the lion mascots Leo and Una at the U. of North Alabama are staying in the shade or their cave. The link to the lion cam seems to be down since the storms also. By the time I get off of work, the daylily blooms are scorched, so no picture taking until I made up for it this past weekend taking over 1000 pictures Saturday and another 279 on Sunday. Some more of my daylilies are posted on myWordpress blog.
I spent most of my gardening weekend working in the shade as much as possible cutting out wild grapes and hackberry trees and pulling up weeds Daddy called’ beggar lice’ out of my beds. I’m not sure of the real name, but they look like dill and the seeds when they fall get stuck in whatever comes in contact with it. For some reason I always wear holes in my jeans above the knees, not on the knees. The sticky seeds along with a grass seed that looks sort of like wheat and just gets down right nasty when dried kept getting tangled up in the frayed part around the 6 inch oval hole and falling down into my pants leg and down into my shoes. I made several trips back to the house to de-seed. At the end of the day, I landed up with sunburn on the oval area of my pants, despite putting on sunscreen on my arms and neck, just not there.
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