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Historian returns to Russellville library

In honor of ongoing state bicentennial celebrations, historian and collector Jim Phillips returned for another presentation at the Russellville Public Library May 15. This presentation was “Alabama: The Early Years.” In the past he has shared about Antebellum Alabama and lost treasures of the South.

“This is one of our adult series that we love having,” said library board member Lela Ray. “It’s really the last one before summer starts.”

In his presentation, Phillips talked about the formative years of Alabama, from becoming a territory in 1817 to achieving statehood in 1819. He detailed the uprisings of the Creek tribes and Andrew Jackson’s distaste for the Native Americans. Through maps he showed how people transported goods throughout the state by plank roads and by river travel. The end of his presentation included a shock factor, as he told about some of the negatives of steamboat travel.

Phillips is full of little-known stories, unusual facts and knowledge about treasure hunting and the art of collecting. Each of his presentations is different, but this one was tailored to coincide with Alabama’s bicentennial.

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