Day 2: Birmingham, Tuscaloosa, Jackson
Trip Start Mar 25, 2012
9Trip End Mar 30, 2012
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I also drove by the Governor's Mansion and the Sloss Furnaces. The Sloss Furnaces used to be an iron-producing furnace and is now a national historic landmark. It became one of the first industrial sites in the US to be preserved for public use. I think on certain days they conduct tours and it is supposedly a haunted location so they even have an annual Halloween Fright Festival. Once a year they hold a Ghost Tour and the location has even been on Ghost Hunters. It was closed when I went by but it was also a little weird getting here because I had to go through a gate and under the highway bridge to take a few pictures. There were some cars parked under here but I didn't see anyone around. It didn't look very safe to be here alone, so I snapped a few pictures and then left.
Next I drove by the Arlington Antebellum Home & Gardens which is a former plantation home. It was a little hard to find the entrance because the whole property is gated off. The entrance is down a side street. I walked around a little bit and took a few pictures, although I thought I heard a gunshot so I came back to the car. It could've been a car back-fire, but you never know!
Then I drove by the 16th Street Baptist Church, which was organized as the First Colored Baptist Church of Birmingham
I finally left Birmingham and set out for Jackson, Mississippi, stopping in Tuscaloosa Alabama on the way. I took I-20 W which only took me an hour to get to Tuscaloosa. Last year there was a horrible tornado that ripped through this town and I wanted to see if there was any damage left. There were spots around McFarland Ave and 15th Street where there was still damage. There was a lake that was semi dried up but had a lot of debris still in it like boards, shoes, metal scraps, and trash. I turned down a street into a housing development right near the lake. I didn't even notice until I got out of the car that there was an entire row of houses gone. I saw driveways that led to nothing and front porch steps leading to no house. I got a little emotional because it really puts your life into perspective. One minute everything can be perfectly okay and the next your house can be ripped off the ground. They had already started re-building a couple houses, but it seems it would take another year or two to get everything back to the way it was.
I set out for Jackson, which took me 3 hours traveling down I-20 W
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