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Macon On Our Minds

2010 November 11

Ray Charles at the state Capitol for the state song naming ceremony.

Today we have Georgia on our minds: Macon, Ga., specifically. Macon is featured in the DLG in a number of collections on a variety of topics.

It was the birthplace of celebrated poet Sidney Lanier and Academy Award winning actor Melvyn Douglas.

Until 1960, the Georgia State Fair was held in Macon. You can view photographs of agricultural exhibits, shows, and parades in the Georgia State Fair, Macon, 1886-1960 Collection

Macon is also known for its exemplary architectural styles. In the early 20th century, the Douglass Theatre was Macon’s premier movie and vaudeville hall for African-Americans. The theaters hosted blues greats and comedy acts, as well as films. It was later the venue to showcase the talents of Redding, Little Richard and James Brown.  The theater closed in 1972 and was later restored, reopening in 1997. Records of the Douglass Theatre can be viewed in the Blues, Black Vaudeville, and the Silver Screen online collection.

Macon is also hailed as the birthplace of Southern rock and roll with stalwarts like Otis Redding and the Allman Brothers Band. It’s no surprise that Macon is home to the Georgia Music Hall of Fame (whose first inductee was Ray Charles, born in Albany, Georgia).

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5 Responses leave one →
  1. mike mcgill permalink
    November 13, 2010

    Hey there – great little blog and I’m here to say that I appreciate that you have it — but I do have a question – unless I’m missing something I always thought Ray Charles was from Albany Georgia – I live in Macon, and really appreciate the leads you’ve placed in this post – but could you please look again at the Ray Charles issue – also we still have the GA State Fair – the online photos only cover up to 1960 – but the fair remains in Macon –

    I had no idea about Melvin Douglas being from Macon – thanks for that insight -

    thanks again — Mike

  2. November 15, 2010

    Mike, you are correct on Ray Charles being born in Albany. Here is a statue of him in an Albany city park:

    http://georgiainfo.galileo.usg.edu/imagedays/raycharlesstatue.htm

  3. November 15, 2010

    Mike, you are correct on Ray Charles being born in Albany. Here is a statue of him in an Albany city park:

    http://georgiainfo.galileo.usg.edu/imagedays/raycharlesstatue.htm

    Here is his bio from the New Georgia Encyclopedia:

    http://www.georgiaencyclopedia.org/nge/Article.jsp?path=/TheArts/Music/Blues/IndividualArtistsandMusicalGroup&id=h-911

  4. Andy Carter permalink*
    November 15, 2010

    Mike,

    Thanks for the catch. I’ve edited the post.

  5. mike mcgill permalink
    November 18, 2010

    great job here – and again I appreciate your effort — Mike

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