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The Model City of the New South: Anniston, Alabama, 1872-1900 Paperback – January 30, 1996

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: University Alabama Press; 2nd edition (January 30, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0817308180
  • ISBN-13: 978-0817308186
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,461,832 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Gates' book is the best one written on the creation of Anniston, Alabama, which is an amazing story. Unlike the nice books by Tee Morgan (which span a much broader era and are somewhat anecdotal in nature), the Gates book is organized into chronological threads with continuity that holds through full chapters. The prime source for information on this subject is the Alabama Room of the Anniston Library (where you can buy the Morgan books today in hardcopy). I've only spent limited time there, but I've done enough to appreciate the Herculean task that this book represents.

The book is well indexed. It is comprehensive in its coverage of names, events, and dates. It presents cause-and-effect explanations of what happened and the key players' motivations. An example is the challenge of Oxanna, which she suggests was a trigger for the pivotal opening of the town to outsiders.

Gates covers some of the activities of the Noble family in Rome, Georgia that prepared them for the great experiment that became Anniston. (There is information on the Nobles in Rome that is not in Battey's book on Rome.) Good coverage is also given to the Tyler family and other of the key families and interests that followed.

Ms. Gates applied her considerable talents to the writing this book "... to continue what Henry Grady began, to tell the world about Anniston ...." Grace Gates is deceased, but she has left us an admirable legacy. This is an important book about an important story. If you have genealogical roots in Anniston or have an interest in the history of the Reconstruction Era and the "New South," I think you will love it.
Tim Naff
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