08 2014



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Albany High Times NEWS & CLUES!!!

We look back....we look forward!!!

 91st Edition ~ 08/16/2014

Website: http://www.albanyhightimes.com                Email: albanyhightimes@aol.com



. . .  just a small town in South Georgia that grew the best kids ever raised!!



Our 12th Year!!!





To times past

... and times future ...


August 16, 2002 - 2014







For the story of our website’s beginning ...






1954 60th Reunion




Our 60th Reunion, which took place on the anniversary of the day we graduated, went off smoothly, and I think everyone had a great time!


The Indian belongs to Kay Blalock, hostess at First Methodist. She also catered the affair and it was very good.


Katie Sue Jordan Gunnels was elected as the new reunion leader for our next reunion.

~ Tom Pattison ('54)







*** Class of 1962 ***


1962 Girl’s Luncheon

August 21, 2014 - 11:30 AM


 Our next luncheon will be on Thursday, August 21st, at 11:30 a.m. We will be gathering at Joann Arneson's creek side home for some good food and fun conversations. Let us know if you will be able to join us and what delicious dish you will be bringing with you!


Joann Roark Arneson (jprarneson@aol.com) or

Carol Pate Stark (cpstark@att.net)


*** Check out our other luncheons and pics at: Click here: '62 Girls' Luncheons


*** See your 70th Birthday Pictures @





** Classes of 1964-65 **

A Combined 50th Reunion

November 7th and 8th, 2014




Once again, there will be a combined 50th Reunion celebration for the classes of 1964-65, and once again at Merry Acres.


Checks should be made payable to:

AHS Class of 64/65

P.O. Box 3746, Albany Georgia


Below is a request for donations to the

"64-65 Wampum Bowl"

to help with the early expenses ... please click to enlarge the class letter from Hugh Westberry and James "Bubba Cagle for further explanation!


(click to enlarge)

 index.64_65letter.jpg (613×799)

facebook  https://www.facebook.com/AHS.64.65

Click here: Albany High School 1964 & 1965


~ Glenda Shelby Cannon (’64) glendashelbyc@gmail.com 





DID YOU KNOW? You can check out suggestions from other class reunions for your venues, caterers and great bands and DJs!!

*** Click here: Reunion Ideas ... take a look!


*** IF YOUR CLASS has great reunion ideas and info you would like to share ... i.e., successful venues, food/caterers and bands/music, send info to albanyhightimes@aol.com with ALL CONTACT INFO!


*** Also ...


This page might be of help ...

Click here: Lost Classmates? How to Find 







Albany Theatre Organ?


? ~  Greetings,

 My name is Michael Paul, and I am trying to find information regarding a theatre in Albany that housed a theatre organ. The theatre's organ was rescued by my grandfather, James Mills. I am not sure which theatre it was. I have access to this organ. He completely restored the organ and entertained many with it in his home both in Warner Robins and Reynolds, GA.


He sold the organ in the late 1970's to a doctor in North Carolina who passed away a year ago. His son and I are trying to find this treasure a home. I am trying to get as much history as possible for the organ.


Thank you in advance for your help,

~ Michael H. Paul


A ~  Michael ~ I am a retired church organist and would love to have that treasure in my home ... ah, but only a "pipe" dream!!!


We moved to Albany in 1948 and I don't remember ever hearing the organ played.  However, Susan Rife O'Neal ('54) remembers a small theatre organ in the orchestra pit.


Sadly, Albany is not what it once was. I would guess that the organ was in the Albany Theatre - it was a fine theatre (and the only one in Albany with real class). It has been closed for some time, and last I heard, they were planning to turn the building into lofts (see 2012 article at the end).


I will  print your question in the August issue of "News & Clues". My AddressBook houses over 2,000 "Indians" who once attended Albany High School. So, it reaches far and wide.


By any chance do you remember James Barnett of Albany? He bought old pipe organs and put one in the Fellowship Hall at Covenant Presbyterian Church (before the sanctuary was built), where he was a member . If I remember, part of it was a theatre organ, but James had one of the manuals installed from a German organ. I played that organ for worship services for 3 years! The 4 manuals were not in sync with the pedal board! But I adjusted!

Good luck with your quest!



Here are articles published in "News & Clues" (our monthly newsletter), and also from the Albany Herald:


Historic Albany Theatre


Historic Albany Theatre, once Southwest Georgia's premier performing arts center, is being restored to its original architectural state to again be Georgia's largest Broadway performing arts center outside Atlanta. Oglethorpe Development Group, Inc. (ODG, Inc.), an Albany, Georgia based private developer, assisted by its non-profit tax-exempt fundraising arm, Friends of the Albany Theatre, is restoring this magnificent theatre to the end that it will be a venue for local, regional, national and international events.


Plans for this arts center include an office/retail mix atrium that includes a fine dining restaurant, executive offices and media conference space. This massive undertaking, considered to be "a key part of the puzzle for...downtown [Albany] redevelopment", will provide high quality art experiences to the Southwest Georgia community.


Click here: Historic Albany Theatre of Albany Georgia - Southwest Georgia's Magnificent Theatre



We paid 10 cents to enter and sit in the Albany Theatre and watch wonderful musical shows on the week-ends with gorgeous Betty Grable or handsome Howard Keel, or perhaps you were in the Hospital Follies and some of us actually performed on that stage … but I’ll bet we never ever imagined that one day that would all be gone and the building would be converted into lofts providing living arrangements … oh my how things change …


Click here: Albany Herald | Lofts headed into historic building



? ~ I just sent a photo to Pat Johnston Strickland - and, in looking for it - I found a lot more. How is best to send them to you ? JPG?

~ linda leeger stokes ('57)


A ~   Yes Linda ... just attach as JPEGS!





50th Wedding Anniversaries and beyond ... 




  The Barfield's: It is wonderful to see so many celebrating 50+ years of marriage. We ... Robert L Barfield, Class of 1961, and Karen Nelson Barfield, Class of 1964, were married June 27,1964.


The next day, June 28th, Gail Hurt Swindle, Class of 1964, and John Swindle were married.



The Mann’s: Thomas Raleigh, Class of 1960 and Gail Hall Class of 1961 were married on June 6, 1964.  On that day, we celebrated our 50th anniversary. We were married at Byne Memorial Baptist Church, and graduated from Mercer University the following year and then spent 28 years, two months, and 24 days in the US Army.


We have enjoyed a very happy life. The Army took us to places like Fort Gordon, Ga (three times); Fort Hood ,Tex (twice), Viet Nam, Florence , SC; Raleigh, NC; Fort Rucker, Al; Fort Leavenworth (twice), Heidelberg and Mannheim, Germany, Fort Meade, MD, Korea; Panama; and Richmond, VA.


After the Army we returned to Macon and Mercer University where we started.


We have two adult children, two sons- in- law, two wonderful granddaughters and a 1952 MG-TD and 1969 MG-B. As Fulton J. Shean often said “Life is worth living.”

GO Indians!


 The Norfolk's: My husband Howard and I celebrated our 59th wedding anniversary the 7th of August. We married in 1955 and I had my senior year to go.  So I was married during my senior year (1956). God has blessed us during our 59 years of marriage. We have 2 wonderful daughters, 2 of the best grand-sons, and 2 of the most precious great-granddaughters in the world.


~ JoAnn (Royal) Norfolk, Class of 1956


The McEachin's: Jerry and Jeanette McEachin we married August 1, 1964, and celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary this year!  In addition to the anniversary, they both celebrated their birthdays:  Jerry: August 1, 1939, and Jeanette: August 1, 1943.  "I had to wait 25 years to find someone with the same birthday to marry and then had to go to LA (Lower Alabama) to find her", says Jerry!


Send your 50th anniversaries beyond

to albanyhightimes@aol.com





Class Websites









*** If your class has a website - please email your link to: albanyhightimes@aol.com



  Check out FaceBook for

AHS FaceBook Links




You must be a member of FaceBook and signed on first to open these pages.


* Albany High Times Website @ Facebook

* Ahs ClassofFiftyfive

* Ahs ClassofSixty

* Albany High Class of 1961 (4) 

* AHS Class of 1969

* Albany High School Class of 1970

* Albany GA. Kids' of the 70's....

* Albany High School Class of 1974 Albany, GA

* Albany High School Grads 1976-1983

* AHS/WHS Class of 1978

*** Email address for Class of '71 FaceBook:




* AHS Class of 1983

* RIP Classmates of DHS AND AHS

* Click here: (60) Friends of Tift Park


ANY OTHER CLASSES to be listed?




 Messages from FaceBook!!



*** Anne Chestnut Rackley: My favorite 'Billy Bragg' word...lugubrious! There is nothing sad about the "News & Clues"!!!  Thanks for your efforts!


*** Those of you who only access Vintage Albany with mobile devices are missing out on a LOT of content. We have a huge photo section, videos and many files and links that cannot be accessed without a PC.

~ Betty Rehberg (’74)

Click here: Vintage Albany Georgia







Meet Nelson Tift


Tift Park Mascot!


by Martha LeSueur Nicholson, Reporter/Editor


Click here: Tift Park Community Market in Albany still going strong | Albany Herald


Nelson is on hand for petting and pictures every Saturday from 9-2 at the new Tift Park Community Market sponsored by Friends of Tift Park. It is a rousing success! Crowds of visitors are there every Saturday enjoying the live music, the vendors, the food, and visiting with each other.



A very popular treat is Glenn Eames’ delicious, made to order on the spot pizza which cooks in just minutes in his special portable wood fired oven. A variety of other good foods, fresh produce from local farms, handmade and blown glass beads and jewelry, plants, pottery, birdhouses and feeders, all sorts of unique crafts and artwork are just a sampling of what's available. Most of the vendors are doing a lively business and return each week, others come periodically.

Everyone I talked to was enjoying themselves immensely in spite of the heat. The beautiful canopy of huge, old oak trees provides plenty of shade over rows of picnic tables and benches for eating and resting. It’s the new “in place” to go meet and greet with friends! Bring your dog and go for a walk in the park. They enjoy it, too. I even saw a lady walking around with a parrot on her shoulder!


If you would like to participate in the fun as a vendor it’s free, just contact Stephen Brimberry, stephenskywater@aol.com or 229-352-1974 to register, or to join or contribute to Friends of Tift Park. Stephen was an Albany Junior High Indian, but graduated from Westover in 1983. He is the son of Albany High Indians, Olin (‘54) and Nancy Huff (‘59) Brimberry, and nephew of Jerry (’57) and Lynda Glass (‘59) Brimberry.

A big THANK YOU to Stephen and all the Friends of Tift Park for such a great idea! Hopefully it will lead to a revitalization of the park for the city and become an active and fitting memorial to our founder, Nelson Tift.


Those who remember the park as a part of their childhood and teen years and on into adulthood taking their children there have fond memories of the zoo, the little pool, the WigWam, playing tennis, swimming, and picnicking in the park. Check out some of those memories at this link on Albany High Times website…. http://albanyhightimes.com/tift_park.htm

If you would like to share your memories of Tift Park send them to albanyhightimes@aol.com




In Memoriam ...
Not where I breathe, but where I loved ...     I live ...


*** Barbara “Bobbie” Cranford-LeGrand, Class of 1962
***  Susan Braswell McIntyre Class 1972
*** David Lee Lofton Class of 1958
*** Peggy Alsobrook Strickland, Class of 1953
*** Valda Clark Goss, Class of 1946
*** Janie Cannon, Class 1966
*** Thomas Lamar "Tommy" Belcher, Jr., Class of 1966
Note: Thanks to all who send notices and/or obituaries of AHS Indians inside and outside of Albany. We may not otherwise be aware of our losses.  
FYI: Email notices and/or obituaries are first sent to the deceased’s class, and if Indians, to the classes of the spouse, child, or parents, as soon as possible.   Each is then listed in the Albany High Times' "News & Clues", and also on the Albany High Times "In Memoriam" webpage : Click here: In Memoriam - Our Deceased Classmates - AHS Albany GA

Please send corrections or additions to





We Recommend … 


After the July issue of "News & Clues", there was this response regarding the recommended webpage “REMEMBERING TEACHERS” ...


 "It's a small world! The story by Joan Hand Murphy (61) about Miss Thelma Plant caught my eye.


I have a number of stories about Miss Plant, but the nurse that put Joan to bed and called Miss Plant was my mother. Some of the students called her "Mum-Mum". She really loved that job. She has told me many stories about the youth that came through her clinic.  She and Miss Plant were very close also.


Thanks for the story and thanks for printing it.

~ Harry Helton (52)


Click here: Remembering AHS Teachers Who Made An Impact:
















 Scrapbooks ...


Carleen Newell

President of 1948 Senior Girls

As Carleen Newell Flowers, Class of 1948,  was cleaning out for a recent move, she came across some wonderful pictures.  She thought about having them added to the Albany High Times' website, but noticed her class had no webpage, so she called Tommy Pattison and asked him to scan them, and send them on to be published on the Albany High Times website.  They include pictures all the way from her kindergarten days to some of her class reunions! 

She also had a scrapbook that someone gave her to keep which included classes from 1947 to the 1950’s.   This scrapbook was made for Mr. and Mrs. McNabb. 

So now, the Class of 1948 has a webpage, along with the Class of 1944!










Banks Burgess

Class of 1966




"Banks and Shane"

"Atlanta's Entertainment Tradition"


Set to Appear at


 "Theatre Albany" October 17, 2014

(Stay Tuned!)


For forty years now, Banks Burgess, Paul Shane, and their fabulous band have brought folks in Atlanta the best entertainment the town has ever seen. Now they are coming to Albany and will perform at Theatre Albany!


Their high-spirited renditions of old-time rock n' roll, folk, bluegrass, and country are known for bringing capacity crowds to their feet! Their show is not just musical entertainment, The Banks & Shane show is high-energy good-time music, spiced with a healthy dose of the good-natured wit and patter that Banks and Paul have fine-tuned on their tours across the U.S. and around the world.


Read more about this AHS Indian and his career at: Click here: Banks Burgess, “Atlanta’s Entertainment Tradition”



Recently Banks was added to "Featuring Our Own" at




 ~ CLUES!!! ~ 




*** Do you know what the F5 button on your keyboard is for?  IT IS THE REFRESH BUTTON.  If a link does not work, or get you to the place you should go ... HIT THE F5 BUTTON!!!   It refreshes the pages and links!


*** The world's best password manager
and secure 
digital wallet - free program


Albany History and Genealogy


For those who are Albany history and genealogy buffs, I recommend the book, The Tifts of GA: Connecticut Yankees in King Cotton’s Court, by Dr. John D. Fair, published in 2010


Dr. Fair is a professor of history at GA College and State University in Milledgeville, GA. He interviewed virtually all of the living descendants of Nelson Tift, the founder of Albany, and many who did business with or worked for those descendants for information for this book.


You will recognize a lot of names from Albany High and from living in Albany. It’s an interesting read brought to my attention by David Sherman (‘61) who was a big contributor to the book and is himself part of the Tift lineage.


Dr. Fair explores the contributions and influence of Tifts to life in southern GA through all the generations from their beginning in Connecticut to the founding of Albany and Tifton and into the 21st century.


The book is available for check out anywhere in GA through the PINES library system.

~ Martha LeSueur Nicholson ('56)


*** LOST IN THE FIFTIES: Through the years ago I received more emails for "Lost in the Fifties" than for any other subject.  Originally, it had a link to a slide presentation of pictures of the 50's with this wonderful background music … "In the Still of the Night".  (For those of you who were in high school during that time, you probably will never forget the wonders of dancing ever so closely to that very song!).  I thought at the time... too bad I can’t publish it on the website. 


But NOW I can.  Again, many Indians have forwarded it to AHTimes!  And once again, it is the most forwarded email I have ever received … EVER!!!  … ENJOY!!! 



*** This is one way to toot your own horn.

Hilarious! Actually unbelievable!


A clarinet made out of a carrot by a “down under” ally. You should be impressed with both the sound, and the humor.


And I think you musicians will be very impressed ... if you believe it!




*** After watching this, I decided we didn't do boogie woogie or jitterbug in high school. We did 'swing' which I liked better on a video showing that way to dance. It wore me out just watching this video! Hope y'all enjoy!


~ Peggy Jo Irwin Davis (’54)


*** A piece of history you may not know and one that should be remembered!


~ Harold Carter (’59)




    Tribe Notes …




*** Often we hear cries of disappointment from Albany ... Casino demolished, Friendship Oak Tree demolished, and more recently talk of cutting down beautiful native oak trees and replacing them with Crepe Myrtles.  Yet in the midst of all that is what is happening at Tift Park.


Folks in Albany are excited about what is happening in our old Tift Park!!!   Read more in ALBANY INTERESTS in this issue.


*** Greetings from Pittsburg, CA, (about 35 miles East of San Francisco)


I recently discovered the albanyhightimes web-site and want to share some of my memories of the six years I spent in Albany from 1950 to 1956 (fourth grade through ninth).


I was born in Long Beach, CA in 1941 and my dad was in the Navy during the war. He had also served in the Army from 1936-40. After the war, with only a ninth grade education and with few job opportunities, he joined the Air Force (Army Air Corp at that time) and was posted to Hamilton Field, in Northern California. In June of 1950, he was transferred to Turner AFB in Albany. My dad went ahead of us by plane and my mom and I arrived later after enduring a three day, three night Greyhound bus ride.


We lived in the apartments that were about a mile from the main gate. I still remember the address: 1633D Pineview Ave. Two things I learned quickly was that I was a “Yankee” and that cockroaches in the house were something you learned to live with. I remember we put the legs of my baby sister’s crib in coffee cans full of water. This was supposed to keep the roaches from being able to crawl up the legs. I also learned on my first day in school that “huh” was not a proper response to a teacher. “Yes’em” and “No’em” quickly became part of my vocabulary.


I had never heard of the Civil War until arriving in Albany. I think the kid that made me aware of the sad situation of being a Yankee was Billy Cato. He was one of my first friends; however, as I recall, we had a falling out later in Jr. High and even had a fight. I also remember that one day we managed to start a grass fire on his dad’s farm.


Some other friends were Sammy and Freddy Price, Billy Avery and Richard Peck. However, my best and longest friend was Stuart Goldstein. The first girl I had a crush on was Barbara Richardson.


I also “threw the Herald” for about four years on Turner AFB. I somehow inherited the route from Sammy and Freddy Price when their family got transferred. I had a small route on base but made most of my money by selling papers in the mess halls. I think I netted about $100.00/mo., which was big bucks in those days. The papers sold for a nickel during the week and a dime on Sundays. I got 2.5 cents on the dailies and 4 cents on the Sunday papers.


After school, I would pick up my papers at the Gulf Oil gas station, owned by Howard Mullins father, and hitchhike to the base where I kept my bike. After my route, I would return to one of the mess halls and wait until either all the papers were sold or they closed. Depending on the mess sergeant’s mood, I was usually allowed to eat dinner there.


As mentioned by others in the “Throwing the Herald” section, my boss was AJ Noble. On Saturday mornings, carrying my money in a sock, I would make my weekly bus trip into town to pay my bill. This was usually followed by a movie or two.


There are many, many more memories I could write about but it would take much too long.


We were transferred to Bergstrom AFB in Austin, Texas in June of 1956, just after my freshman year at Albany High. In May of 1957, my dad was killed in a car wreck and my mom and sister and I moved back to California to be near my Mom’s family.


There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think fondly of my time in Albany and what an effect it had on me then and later in life. Even though I only spent six years there, whenever people ask me where I’m from, I always reply," Albany, GA”. The educational and discipline standards in the schools were top notch; however, as with everywhere, I assume that is not the case now.


I wound up in Aerospace Materials and got to see much of the world, including eight months in Singapore, as an International Technical Service Manager for Henkel Aerospace. I retired in 2006 after 40 years with them and am now just enjoying my grandkids, and still remembering Albany!

With Warm Regards to the Class of ’59 (which I would have been a part of had we stayed) and especially to the Air Force brats who passed through Turner AFB.

~ Sid Quick, Class of 1959


*** Please feel free to post my previous email, and thank you for placing me in the class of 1959.


While I only attended AHS my freshman year, it is true, as you say, that "Once an Indian, always an Indian".


I very much enjoyed reading the six months worth of "News and Clues" in the email you sent and hope that my letter will find someone who knew me way back then. It would be great to be able to connect with someone from 60 years ago.


As you all down there may know, Buster Posey (of Leesburg, GA) has been a San Francisco Giant for four years now. I only became a Giants fan after he joined the team. To me, he exhibits much needed character and poise not much seen in professional sports these days and I hope he stays with the Giants for a long, long time.


I would like to continue to contribute to the monthly newsletter by writing about my experiences and memories, as an Air Force brat with one foot in Turner AFB and one foot in Albany, which hopefully will be of interest to those like me and those who were born and raised in Albany back in the 1950's.


I almost forgot....I was amazed to find that I'm in an Albany High Times picture, under "Tiny Groups", taken in 1951 of one of the midget football teams. I was 10 years old at the time. What a find!

Best Regards,

~ Sid Quick ('59)


NOTE:  I have been amazed at the many people who have found the Albany High Times through Google or other Search Engines!  We are truly "on the map"!!!


*** Thanks for all you do on this newsletter. I enjoy it!

~ Fran Reimer Barnes (’68)


*** Please run a correction in the next issue of Albany Times. Lamar Clifton was a proud graduate of the AHS Class of 1946!  He went away to North Georgia College in the Fall of 1946 on the Salesmen’s Club scholarship and a Rotary Club loan, which he paid off upon returning from his military service in Korea and just weeks before our wedding.


Mary Dale Vansant ('56) Kea’s father, Matt Vansant presented him with the check on behalf of the Salesmen’s Club, and there was a wonderful photo of them in the Albany Herald.

You may be confused because Morgan Murphy, his good friend and a few of their Class of 1946, stayed back a year to play football, and they finished in 1947.


Lamar was in on the planning and often emceed events for their Class of 1946 Reunions. Please make that correction. I have already had a long distance call about it.


That Class of 1946 meant so much to him. He, along with Laura Hysler Pye, Frances Cobb Lancaster, Bill Mills, and others, were such a close knit group. Born in 1929, they were truly children of "The Great Depression" - as they liked to say "we had everything but money."


Friendships were paramount, and they kept in touch. World War II was ending as they graduated and patriotism was at its zenith. Many of them were in ROTC in college, and became officers in the Korean War. Edgar Brunson's recent attempt to contact Lamar is an example of those enduring friendships.

Thanks, and keep up the good work!!
~ Evelyn Butler Clifton

*** I went to the Tift Park Market Saturday and was SO impressed by the crowd, the vendors, the food, and the spirit everywhere. The mascot really caught my attention, so I took his picture and came home and wrote my impressions of it all.

~ Martha LeSueur Nicholson ('56)


*** A long time ago I sent you a photo with the caption, “Life is Good!”, and this is just to notify you that life is still good!


Now the forwarding of pictures is not really among my areas of expertise, so if this picture does not come out then let me know and I’ll do a substitute – if I can find one.


John Grissett Class of 1944


I don’t know the year the picture was taken, but think it was maybe three years ago, and the picture would have been taken by my cousin, Linda Brock Donnalley, who has always had an adventurous streak – like riding in the front seat of a sailplane.


I’m no longer very active in sailplaning, but still go out now and then. Like, this weekend!


And, I correspond occasionally with Bobby Doane, but not in the last six months or so.


Many thanks for your efforts in publishing the Albany High Times. I read it avidly. 

Thanks for your interest - -

~ John Grissett Class of 1944


*** A dear friend of the family, Julia Massey Culpepper ('58), suggested we send in the obituary for my father, David Lee Lofton (Class of '58).


Thanks for sending the notice.  I have already had some emails sharing kind words and stories about my dad. I am enjoying sharing these with my mom. Thanks!

~ Lara Lofton (Lee's youngest daughter)


*** My 1950 annual has Peggy Alsobrook (recently deceased) in the freshman class, which would be the Class of 1953 if I figured it right.
~ Connie Thomas Pinkston (’50)

***  Valda Clark Goss's name and picture appears on page 31 of Sophomores in the 1944 Thronateeska; thus, her class year may be 1946.

~ VTY Robert H. Doan ('44)








What Special 200th Anniversary

Falls On September 6, 2014?




Following the British capture of Washington on August 24, 1814, Dr. William Beanes, a prominent physician was taken prisoner by the British. Since Francis Scott Key was a well-known lawyer, he was asked to assist in efforts to get Dr. Beanes released.


Knowing that the British were in the Chesapeake Bay, Key left for Baltimore. There Key met with Colonel John Skinner, a government agent who arranged for prisoner exchanges.


Together, on September 5, they set out on a small American flag-of-truce vessel to meet the Royal Navy.

On board the British flagship, HMS Tonnant, the officers were very kind to Key and Skinner. They agreed to release Dr. Beanes. However, the three men were not permitted to return to Baltimore until after the bombardment of Fort McHenry.


The three Americans were placed aboard the American ship, and waited behind the British fleet. From a distance of approximately eight miles, Key and his friends watched the British bombard Fort McHenry.

After 25 hours of continuous bombing, the British decided to leave since they were unable to destroy the fort as they had hoped.


Realizing that the British had ceased the attack, Key looked toward the fort to see if the flag was still there.


To his relief, the flag was still flying!   It was September 6, 1814!*


Click here: NMAH | Interactive Flag


Quickly, he wrote down the words to a poem which was soon handed out as a handbill under the title "Defence of Fort McHenry."


Later, the words were set to music, and renamed "The Star Spangled Banner." It became a popular patriotic song. It was not until 1916 when Woodrow Wilson declared it by executive order to become our National Anthem, but not officially until March 3, 1931 when it was declared as such by law!


For many years I have been passionate about America singing their National Anthem, and hanging up the unartful so called "performances" we must endure.  If small nations can raise the roof with voices lifting up their Anthem ... CERTAINLY WE CAN! Too high?  Have it played in the Key of G and GO FOR IT!


I thought, after I heard this video, perhaps America would WANT to sing it ... but alas we fell back into booking entertainers who proudly "slaughtered" our National Anthem. 


So if you have never been thrilled hearing a full stadium of Americans singing their National Anthem ... here's a great one for you!





Explore the flag that inspired the National Anthem to discover stories about its creation, history, and preservation. Open the hotspots to learn what makes this flag special to so many Americans and how the Smithsonian National Museum of American History is working to preserve it for future generations.


* I have found two other dates citied as the actual date the words were penned ...


Other links:


*** Click here: Francis Scott Key - Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine (U.S. National Park Service)


*** Click here: Francis Scott Key - Biography - Lawyer, Poet - Biography.com






NEW “News & Clues”






*** Please add J.M. “Jimmy” Tumlin to your mailing.

Thank you. 

~ Jimmy Tumlin, Class of 1962


*** Ran into an Indian, Carol Gregors Brown, Class of 1958. She has recently moved back to Albany. She would appreciate being added to the Albany High Times’ newsletter.

~ Leon Perrett (’56)


*** Welcome!

~ Sid Quick, Class of 1959


*** Please add my cousin, Burie McCurdy Brown, Class of 1952, to the email list. She now lives in Cary, NC.

~ Dan Lipsey (’56)


*** Please add me to your email list. I attended Albany schools from first grade thru 9th and would love to “catch up” on all that has happened in Albany and with childhood friends since I left in 1957.

~ Pat Deese Nelson ('60)


*** I am living in South Carolina.  Please add me to the list.

~ Margaret Johns Robinson, Class of 1958


*** You do great work on this website.  I check it out every now and again but I would appreciate your putting me on the newsletter email list.  Hope you are doing well. Thanks,

~ Linda Hurt Giles (’64)







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