Southern Culture Tour, Day 4: Deanna Tyler

We began our 4th day of the journey this morning by driving to Atlanta, Georgia from Savannah. We couldn’t resist stopping in at Dekalb Farmer’s Market just outside of Atlanta where we saw just about every kind of grocery product from around the globe. From fresh fish, to avocados the size of a football, to fresh flowers, Dekalb was the place to shop.  I purchased a Swiss Chocolate bar for a friend back home.

From there, we went on to Atlanta, where the Junior Fellows and I had the opportunity to view the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library. The Presidential Library was the second Presidential Library I’ve been able to tour, and I liked this one the most.  The library not only took an in-depth look at Carter’s presidency, but examined his early life and career as well.  As a finishing touch to his legacy, the tour highlighted his wife’s humanitarian accomplishments as well, revealing just how generous the Carter family was.  I was especially impressed to see the Nobel Peace Prize Jimmy Carter was awarded.  However, my favorite exhibit in the library was the gifts that President Carter was given while in office. Gifts on display included: an ostrich egg that was made into a model of the Oval Office, a tapestry of George Washington, and even a replica of a crown. Speaking of the Oval Office, we got to take a picture in Jimmy Carter’s office!

Junior Fellows in the Oval Office

We also had a photo opportunity in the Japanese Garden outside of the Library where we were able to see autumn colored leaves and climb up a slippery waterfall.

Junior Fellows in the Carter Presidential Library’s Gardens

As we were leaving Atlanta, we also got a chance for a photo opportunity at Martin Luther King Junior’s grave. Seeing the grave of someone who had forever changed history for the rights of Americans was breathtaking.

Junior Fellows at MLK Grave

Once reaching Alabama, we had the rare chance to view the home of Margaret Mitchell, the author of the classic novel, Gone with the Wind. Although we were in a large tour group, we were able to get an inside perspective at how and where Mitchell wrote such a masterpiece.  We toured her small but cozy apartment, and even saw the typewriter used to construct the manuscripts for her book.

Margaret Mitchell’s Typewriter

Interesting enough, Mitchell never intended to publish her story, much less release her manuscripts to the public.  To think the story came as far as it did is quite impressive.

That would be a full day, but we also visited the Vulcan Statue in Birmingham…

Birmingham at Night

…and the Kelly Ingram Park, where we saw a slice of Birmingham’s sad civil rights history…

Kelly Ingram Park, Birmingham

It’s interesting to see what you can learn when you keep an open mind and a positive attitude!

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