Speakers Bureau

The AHA Speakers Bureau features Alabama historians who volunteer their time to present programs to libraries, museums, clubs, civic groups, genealogical societies and any group with an interest in Alabama history.

 

AHA does not charge for these programs, but we do ask that groups or institutions booking a speaker provide a minimum of $50.00 for the speaker’s travel expenses.

 

To book a program, please contact the speaker directly.

Speakers and Programs
Jim Baggett AHA web site.png
Jim Baggett

Jim Baggett is Head of the Department of Archives and Manuscripts at the Birmingham Public Library and Archivist for the City of Birmingham. He has served as president of the Society of Alabama Archivists and currently serves as President of the Alabama Historical Association. Jim has lectured throughout the U.S. and in Europe and has been featured on Alabama Public Television, Alabama Public Radio, National Public Radio, and C-SPAN. He has authored two books on Alabama history, edited three others, and has written dozens of articles. He also writes the “Reading Birmingham” book column for the online news site BirminghamWatch. Jim lives with his wife and daughter in Birmingham and Mentone, Alabama.

The Black and White Families of Faunsdale Plantation

Using letters, diaries, harvest records, and church registers this talk explores what we know, and what we can know, about the lives of free white people and enslaved African Americans on one southwest Alabama plantation.

 

This talk can be given as a PowerPoint presentation or can be presented without PowerPoint. For PowerPoint, a laptop, screen, and digital projector are required.

 

John Wilkes Booth in Alabama

More than four years before murdering Abraham Lincoln, the actor John Wilkes Booth performed in Montgomery, Alabama and took part in the city’s debates on secession. This talk explores Booth’s impact on Alabama during his life and after his death.

 

This talk can be given as a PowerPoint presentation or can be presented without PowerPoint. For PowerPoint, a laptop, screen, and digital projector are required.

 

Discovering 19th-Century Life in Alabama Letters and Diaries

From matters of love, death and politics to the price of shoes, nineteenth century Alabamians recorded their experiences in letters and diaries. This talk explores life in the 1800s through the personal writings of one Alabama family.

This talk can be given as a PowerPoint presentation or can be presented without PowerPoint. For PowerPoint, a laptop, screen, and digital projector are required.

"It Came Like a Cyclone": Alabama and the 1918 Influenza 

As World War One came to a close, tens of millions of people around the world contracted influenza in the worst pandemic in human history. Alabama was not spared the misery, and almost 150,000 Alabamians became ill in every part of the state. Thousands, including whole families, died. Stores, theaters, fairs, schools, and even churches were closed to try and stop the spread of the disease. With not enough doctors or hospital beds to tend the sick, neighbors pulled together to care for one another. This talk explores the story of the great influenza in Alabama and around the world.

 

This talk can be given as a PowerPoint presentation or can be presented without PowerPoint. For PowerPoint, a laptop, screen, and digital projector are required.

Old School Scrapbooking

From Victorian era school girls to a county coroner with an interest in grisly murders, Alabamians often saved mementos in scrapbooks. This talk explores scrapbook keeping and keepsakes--visiting cards, photographs, letters, poems, theater programs, paper dolls, newspaper clippings--that people treasured and saved.

 

This talk is given as a PowerPoint presentation. A laptop, screen, and digital projector are required.

201709200223-900x600.jpg
Richard Bailey

Since returning to Montgomery, Dr. Bailey has been a consultant for the Center for Public Television at The University of Alabama, where he was a consultant for their productions on the Lincoln School of Marion and Reconstruction black officeholders. For the Division of Telecommunication and Educational Television at Auburn University, Bailey was an advisor for the Gee’s Bend story and the Horace King documentary. He was a consultant for the award-winning radio documentary, “Remembering Slavery,” produced by the Institute for Language and Culture at the University of Montevallo. In the mid-1980s, Gov. George C. Wallace appointed him twice to the De Soto Commission to reconstruct the path of the Spanish explorer through Alabama. Kiosks along select Alabama highways identify the route of De Soto.

Amazing Grace: The Life and Stirring Times of Satchel Paige, Joe Louis, and Jesse Owens

Alabama athletes have made invaluable contributions to the sports scene in America. These athletes are so into woven into the fabric and culture of American sports that sport enthusiasts––and even some fanatics––seldom pause to consider that these persons were born in Alabama. In other instances, other towns and cities outside Alabama have claimed these sports giants as their own. This presentation offers a biographical profile of Satchel Paige, Joe Louis, and Jesse Owens; discusses why each sought a career in athletics; and evaluates their contributions and impact. It also offers a bibliography, film footage, and photos of these athletes at different stages of their careers.


Microphone, slide projector, large screen and digital projector.

For additional talks on Alabama history provided by the Alabama Humanities Alliance, please visit alabamahumanities.org/speakers.