Water Ways: Alabama Traditional Culture of Alabama's Water System
Index to the Waterways Photos in This Exhibit

  1. Farmers once brought corn to this 19th century gristmill near Roeton (Coffee County) to be ground into meal. (Photo: Stephen Grauberger)

  2. This fisherman displays his catch while fishing the Chattahoochee River at the George W. Andrews Lock and Dam. (Photo: Stephen Grauberger)

  3. The Great Seal of Alabama includes a map of the state's rivers. Alabama's first governor, William Wyatt Bibb commissioned the design.

  4. Manager, Mary Perry, welcomes customers to Ezell's Fish Camp on the banks of the Tombigbee River in Lavaca (Choctaw County). The family-owned restaurant specializes in catfish. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  5. Joe Sims pulls a yellow cat, or "flathead," from a hoop net in the Alabama River. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  6. Commercial fisherman Wayne Moore hauls in a slat-box fish trap from Flint Creek, a tributary of the Tennessee River. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  7. Shannon (left) and Wayne Haggard of Waterloo (Lauderdale County) run trotlines from jump boxes to catch fish in the waters along the Tennessee River. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  8. Wayne Haggard of Waterloo checks his catalpa trees for catalpa worms, a favorite bait used by Alabama fishermen. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  9. Mussels, once harvested from the rivers to make mother-of-pearl buttons, are now sold for use in Japan's cultured pearl industry. Philip Meadows uses a four-inch ring to make sure this mussel is of legal size. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  10. Brailing is a traditional method of catching mussels. Brail boats drag "brails" (chains) along the bottom of the river and mussels clamp down on knobby hooks. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  11. Nuby Woodard of Laceys Spring (Morgan County) displays the four-pronged brail hooks used to catch mussels. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  12. With the shell population diminishing due to changes in the ecosystem, diving is the more common method of locating mussels. Philip Meadows prepares to dive in the Tennessee River. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  13. A former commercial fisherman who built his own boats, Mike McCarty switched from plywood to aluminum and began building workboats. His business, Silver Ships, is located in Theodore (Mobile County). (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  14. Dan Smith of Calvert (Mobile County) built this double-ender, known as a Stockton model, for logging in the swamps of the Tombigbee and Tensaw Rivers. (Photo: Erin Kellen)

  15. The Davis Ferry near Franklin in Monroe County transports travelers to and from Packer's Bend. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  16. Slater Huff of Packer's Bend (Monroe County) stands at the spot on the Alabama River where he and his father ran the ferry in the 1930s. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  17. In a practice known as "grappling," Mickey Easley (left) and Mike Kinney locate catfish in submerged, hollow logs and catch them by hand. (Photo: Aimee Schmidt)

  18. Deborah Fuller catches bream in the backwaters of the Conecuh River. (Photo: Stephen Grauberger)

  19. Newcomers to Alabama bring their cultural traditions with them. Kinn Kranh of Bayou La Batre
    (Mobile County) makes a Cambodian fish trap from bamboo and wire. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  20. Taxidermist Burks Laney of Taylor (Houston County) has preserved many of the heads of alligators he killed while removing "nuisance" animals from populated areas at the request of state conservation officers. (Photo: Stephen Grauberger)

  21. Cousins Eleanor Cobb (left) and Virginia Hamlett hold an old map showing their family's land holdings in Molette's Bend
    (Dallas County). They share century-old family stories about life along the Alabama River. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  22. A third generation waterman, Captain Pat Meyers of Satsuma (Mobile County) works as a riverboat pilot for the Kimberly-Clark Corporation and builds replicas of historic riverboats. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  23. This movable kennel in Molette's Bend (Dallas County) is designed with wheels and a trailer hitch so that hunting dogs can be pulled to high ground during floods. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  24. This 1855 grave marker in Montgomery's Oakwood Cemetery tells of a boy's drowning in the Alabama River. "Now I warn all young and old to beware of the dangers of this River; see how I am fixed in this watery grave." (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  25. A rope swing is often an indication of a good swimming hole. This spot can be found at Limestone Park on the Little Cahaba River. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  26. As the last major free-flowing river in the state, the Cahaba has long been the preferred location for canoe or tubing trips. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  27. In swampy areas with lots of trees, it is often more effective to scull with one oar than row with two oars. This man competes in a sculling race on the Pea River at Geneva's Festival on the Rivers. (Photo: Stephen Grauberger)

  28. Worm fiddling is a traditional method of catching bait. At Geneva's Festival on the Rivers, contestants rub or saw on stakes to create underground vibrations causing worms to surface. (Photo: Stephen Grauberger)

  29. The Reverend Leo King (left) baptizes Akeyla Holifield in a Perry County creek. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  30. At the annual Blessing of the Fleet in Bayou la Batre
    (Mobile County), shrimp boats gather for an invocation from the Archbishop for a safe and productive season. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)

  31. Each December several river towns in Alabama host holiday nautical parades. The Autauga County Rescue Squad participates in Wetumpka's Christmas on the Coosa. (Photo: Barry Chrietzberg)

  32. The weigh-in is the highlight of this bass fishing tournament at Lake Eufaula. (Photo: Anne Kimzey)