Perhaps one of the most recognizable names in American medicine is that of Dr. Walter Reed. Reed would become a symbol of army medicine in the years after his death with the naming of the military hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, in his honor. Before that, his work resulted in important advances in patient care and taming one of the most feared diseases of the time, yellow fever.
A recent CalCo Museum addition is neither old nor new, even though it has been around almost six decades. This item is a Hasbro Spiderman circa 2014. Standing about 12” tall, the still popular figure can be posed in different heroic positions. In addition, with fresh batteries installed pressing a button renders loud, snarky remarks appropriate for a teen superhero.
“Houston, we’ve had a problem,” were the words of Apollo 13 astronaut Jim Lovell when an explosion crippled the spacecraft and threatened the lives of the crew. What started as a terror that threatened their lives and for days gripped the attention of the world became one of the great adventures of manned spaceflight, now 50 years ago this month.
For the first time, probably since the very first Easter, churches around the world will be empty. There are several optimistic things that come to mind in the midst of this situation we find ourselves.
Calhoun County Museum has on display two Martha Holcombe-Root figurines from her “All God’s Children” series. The name comes from 1st John 3:1 (NKJV) “Behold what manner of love the father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God.” Miss Martha as she likes to be called was an unemployed mother of three when her church pastor called for a faith promise to repair the leaking roof. She had no idea how she could help so she prayed for guidance-Pinterest. She made a soft sculpture doll for fun and people expressed interest in purchasing it. Inspired she placed an ad in a craft magazine and the business took off. The figurines on display are from the AGC series that began in 1985. They are “Billie” and “Nellie” circa 1991. Both are patriotic theme, each wearing sailor style suits. Billy is wrapped in an American flag and Nellie is holding a small flag. Nellie appears to be singing and has a small teddy bear at her feet as seen in many of this series. I can envision “Oh, say can you see” in a sweet child’s voice. In 1989 Miss Martha began a historical series. YouTube has an inspirational video featuring 20 historical black person figurines, some well, many less known, but all significant. I would encourage any history buff to google “Martha Holcombe Black History Heroes.” There are also AGC figurine videos on Facebook. I chose the patriotic fi gurines to honor the service of Calhoun county black veterans.