Preserving Jackson Co. History

Preserving Jackson Co. History

By Dylan Smith, Managing Editor •

JACKSON COUNTY, Ala. — As landmarks paying tribute to historical figures are being erased, defaced and renamed around the nation, locals in Jackson County are proclaiming their intentions to preserve their heritage. 

Jackson County was established on December 13, 1819, by the Alabama State Legislature. The county was named in honor of Andrew Jackson, who served as U.S. Army General and seventh president of the United States. 

Many point to President Jackson’s service in the U.S. Armed Forces and populist presidency as to why his legacy endures. Detractors say his policies regarding Native American Tribes deem Old Hickory as unworthy of honor. 

“Today, the radical left has become obsessed with destroying and altering our history and heritage,” says Lewis Pitchford.

Pitchford is a Jackson County native and local history enthusiast. 

“Andrew Jackson did great things for our country and some not so great things,” says Pitchford. “If we are going to judge every situation the same why not rename everything?”

Pitchford concludes, “American history isn’t perfect, but it has led to the expansion of rights for every person and has brought freedom and liberty to countless millions.”

A cannon sits atop Battery Hill in Bridgeport commemorating the site of the Siege of Bridgeport in April 1862.

The Civil War battle resulted in a victory for the Union Army over the Confederates, which led to federal forces occupying the northernmost city in Jackson County.

Civil War landmarks have also been a target for a protest of late. According to State Rep. Tommy Hanes (R-Bryant), history will be repeated if forgotten.

“It’s important that future generations have history to refer back to because they will not know where they came from,” says Hanes. “Without history, history is destined to repeat itself.”

Hanes was a cosponsor of the Alabama Memorial Preservation Act, which was signed into law in 2017. 

Monuments paying tribute to America’s founding fathers, abolitionists, among other legendary leaders have come under attack as of late.

Various statues honoring George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Frederick Douglas, Christopher Columbus, and even Abraham Lincoln have been toppled or injured. 

In the current political environment, it may seem as if no historical landmark is safe. As for Jackson County, citizens say they will protect and honor their shared heritage