Gadsden Reads To Kill A Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird
Advanced Imaging
The Gadsden Times
Gadsden Public Library
gadsden city drama
Bar Association
Gadsden Reads is sonsored by Advanced Imaging of Gadsden and The Gadsden Times. It is a project of the Gadsden Public Library, Gadsden State Community College, and the Mary G. Hardin Center for Cultural Arts.. This year's project partners include the Central Carver Museum, Gadsden City High School Drama Department, and the Etowah County Bar Association.


Another Successful Year
with Gadsden Reads


What a grand adventure Gadsden's 2008 Big Read turned out to be! Reflecting after the conclusion of our last event, it seems clear to me that the efforts of those involved over the last two months can be considered nothing less than successful. The Big Read kicked off on Friday, February 1 with a lecture by Dr. Don Noble, English professor Emeritus of the University of Alabama. Since its opening in February, Gadsden Reads has seen a score of other special events recognizing the power and influence of Harper Lee’s timeless novel To Kill a Mockingbird

Over the past two months, guest such as Kathy McCoy, former Executive Director of the Monroe County Heritage Museum, and author of "Monroeville: Literary Capital of Alabama"; Ramona Hyman, author of "Montgomery Bus Boycott: The Literariness of a Political Movement"; and local attorneys of the Etowah County Bar, who re-enacted the dramatic courtroom scene, each contributed to make our special events truly notable.  Last weekend, Philip Alford and Mary Badham, the actors who played Jem and Scout in the 1962 film classic To Kill a Mockingbird, offered their support with a special appearance. I would like to thank the Etowah County Bar, Dr. Noble, Dr. McCoy, and Dr. Hyman for their scholarly participation. Additionally, we could not have concluded this year’s initiative with such a bang without the cooperation of Phillip Alford and Mary Badham.

One of the highlights was the showing of the movie at the Pitman Theatre on the 45th Anniversary of its premiere in Gadsden.  Thanks to the City of Gadsden and Downtown Gadsden Inc. for allowing Gadsden Reads the temporary use of the facility.  The need to finish the interior restoration is clear. Perhaps Gadsden Reads has played a part in energizing this restoration. 

Gadsden Reads, being a community read initiative, is only as strong and effective as the community from which it emanates. Without community support and collaboration, such a literacy project would not be possible. The Hardin Center for Cultural Arts, the Gadsden Public Library, Gadsden State Community College, and the Central-Carver Museum each contributed with a great deal of planning and collective ingenuity, while also offering their respective spaces as sites for special events. Furthermore, Gadsden City High School and the Etowah Bar Association each contributed theatrical adaptations of the novel, broadening our special event list.

The 2008 Big Read consisted of a grand total of 16 special events, each one being varied and intriguing. Without the sponsorship of The Gadsden Times and Advanced Imaging of Gadsden, none of our collective vision would have materialized.

It is after such a successful endeavor that I am proud to consider myself a citizen of Gadsden, Alabama - a place where art, culture, entertainment, and scholarship each hold independent significance to patrons, merchants, and community leaders.  Thank you to everyone who participated in The Big Read 2008.

Katelyn Williams
Gadsden Reads Project Manager