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Postcard exhibit to open

A first of its kind exhibit is coming to the Camellia City beginning Monday and will remain open until Sept. 14.

The Greenville-Butler County Public Library will be the host of the first ever Dr. Wade Hall Postcard Exhibit, which coincides with the theme of the Alabama Bicentennial Commission “Discovering Our Places.” The Alabama Humanities Foundation, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, co-sponsors this project.

Cataloging Librarian for Troy University, Ruth Elder, will be in attendance at the opening of the exhibit on Aug. 20, at the GBCPL. She will give a special presentation entitled, “Wade Hall Postcard Collection: The Exhibits, the Postcards, the Stories.” Light refreshments will be served.

“We were inspired to make this exhibit happen after Troy’s Dean of Library Services, Chris Schaffer, saw a similar postcard exhibit in Kansas City back in 2014,” she said. “We had 25,000 postcards donated to us by Wade Hall in the mid 2000s, which were just sitting in the archives. We decided to take our time putting it together and planned to roll it out in conjunction with the Alabama Bicentennial celebration.”

The Hall exhibit was first unveiled on the campus of Troy University in January 2017. Elder said she was contacted by GBCPL director Kevin Pearcey with interest in having the exhibit come to Greenville.

“Kevin told me he had heard from people in Greenville who saw the exhibit in another city,” Elder said. “Kevin was also interested in getting it to Greenville. The collection coming to Greenville is the ‘Streets Exhibit.’ The postcards in this collection show street scenes from around Alabama, specifically South-Central Alabama. Cities like Greenville, Luverne and Selma will be depicted in this exhibit.”

An alumnus of Troy State Teachers College, Dr. Hall, who died in 2015, grew up near Union Springs. After serving as a teacher in Opp and a stint in the U.S. Army, Hall earned a master’s degree from the University of Alabama and a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois. He taught English at the University of Florida, Kentucky Southern College and Bellarmine University.

“This collection of postcards is very interesting and will intrigue the people in Greenville,” Elder said. “I’m excited to visit Greenville and open this exhibit on Monday.”

The exhibit features postcards, ranging from the early 1900s to the 1960s, and will begin at 5 p.m. on Monday.