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  • Exhibits Pay Tribute To Early Black Experience

    Exhibits Pay Tribute To Early Black Experience at St. Francisville Museum
    By Anne Butler
    leadbellyA couple of recently staged complementary exhibits in the West Feliciana Historical Society Museum pay tribute to the early black experience—and endurance—in the area. Conceived by society president Susie Tully and created by museum curator Cliff Deal, the exhibits may be viewed free of charge daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the museum on Ferdinand Street in St. Francisville.

    One presentation focuses on the birth of the blues in the rural South and their ongoing influence on modern music. Originating on rural southern plantations of the 19th century, the blues evolved from spirituals and African chants, work songs and field hollers. Originally sung by slaves and later sharecroppers working in cotton and cane fields as well as by chain-gang prisoners tilling penitentiary fields, blues music “told the rural story of oppression, hard work, broken hearts, misfortune and struggle...From unbridled joy to deep sadness, no form of music communicates more genuine emotion.”

  • St. Francisville offers sanctuary in time of COVID-19

    St. Francisville offers sanctuary in time of COVID-19

    By Anne Butler


    4th of July “And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.” That’s what 19th-century Scottish-born American naturalist John Muir said. Author and Sierra Club founder, Muir advocated the preservation of wilderness areas like Yosemite National Park, and his words certainly suit this unsettled and unpredictable time. Nature has such a calming, soothing impact on worried minds, and the St. Francisville area offers the chance to be safe, socially distanced and mask-wearing, while getting away from the stress and uncertainty of the COVID-19 issues.


     A celebration of the Fourth of July, hosted by longtime St. Francisville mayor Billy D’Aquilla, takes place at the West Feliciana Sports Park complex off US 61 at Hardwood, with plenty of outdoor areas for social distancing. Music and refreshments begin at 6; fireworks display starts at dark.