Gorgas, Alabama (also Goodsprings and Klondike Camp)

The Alabama Power Company's electricity-generating steam plants on the Black Warrior River;
their coal mining operations where the America, Pratt, and MaryLee seams were being mined;
the "camps" - clusters of employees' houses once located on the ridges and along the creeks;
Klondike Camp, where the Dendy family lived (1941-1955) near the little village of Goodsprings
.

                                                                                                                                                                        LAST UPDATED 02-20-2013

         SOME ORAL HISTORY (& maybe a few lies) -- click the underlined links below to listen: 
Cold Dopes     Old Eli & Cricket Lodge   Ol' Bo's Toes    How to Hypnotize a Chicken    Cow Poker & Teats
Radio Nights & Baseball    Front Porches    World War II & Fishin' with Heroes    How to Talk        
The Yard Crew      Epilogue: Gorgas Today   

These audio clips are excerpted from my book "Red Clay Klondike - about Gorgas, Goodsprings, and Klondike Camp during the 1940s & '50s. It's about 200 pages with 100 photos and other illustrations. 
                                                                                                
   SOLD OUT. THERE MAY BE A FEW COPIES OF THE 2nd EDITION AVAILABLE AT http://carlelliottbooks.com/orderform
     or through Mrs. Lenora Cannon at (205) 387-3522.
                            

                                                                       

To see the Table of Contents, click here (then to return to this page, click the 'X' in the upper right corner).
 
To order: click here and give me your phone number and email address.

SLIDESHOWSClick the underlined links below: 
                                                               (To control the slideshow, move the mouse pointer onto the picture.
                                                                To return to this page, click the 'BACK ARROW' in the upper left corner)
   1. Klondike Camp & Goodsprings
: ---------->
Klondikehttp://x.co/YMYy
    2. Schools (Gorgas & Thomas W Martin): --> Schoolshttp://x.co/YMdw
    3. Alabama Power Co Operations: -----------> APCohttp://x.co/YMeV
    4. Other People, Places etc: ---------------------> Otherhttp://x.co/YMea
 
VIDEO - "Gorgas 75 Years - 1917-1992" by the Alabama Power Company:  click here 
(you may need to click "OPEN" and then "ALLOW" to play the video) (NOTE: it's a big file so will take a while to load)

Klondike Camp, 1940s

 

OLD ARTICLES - Click below: (to return to this page just click the 'BACK ARROW' in the upper left corner)
                Powergrams 1924 ----------------------->"A Visitor's View of Gorgas"
                Powergrams 1924 --------------------------->"Gorgas Educational System"
                Powergrams 1924 - --------------------->"History of 'Warrior' Steam Plant" 
                United Mine Workers Journal 1944 ----> "Better Housing for Workers"

FIND IT ON GOOGLE: What little is left of the area may be seen by searching for "klondike rd, goodsprings, al" on Google Maps (satellite view option) or Google Earth (select the "roads" option to identify the roads). Hwy 269 didn't exist back then. The village of Goodsprings is just north of the intersection of Klondike Road and Goodsprings Road. From that intersection, follow Goodsprings Road south about 1/2 mile, then east on Hwy 57 (it's still Goodsprings Rd) another 1/2 mile past the site of Thomas W. Martin School (demolished, but you can see the outline of the football field); then southeast on an unnamed road about a mile to the Gorgas Steam Plant complex on the Black Warrior River. Note the coal barge delivering more coal for the reserve coal pile (which looks to be about as big as it was in the 1950s, 750,000 tons of coal). Just northwest is a second reserve coal pile, and nearby is what's left of our old swimmin' hole "Blue Lake," still partly blue but obviously no longer fit for swimming due to the minerals that have leached in. In the general area north of the river and west of the steam plant, you'll see the black & gray residues from the old coal mines, now shut down. And except around Goodsprings, there are almost no houses; all the old "camps" are gone - Klondike Camp, Short Camp, Dixie Camp, High Level etc. - the little houses moved or torn down, and much of the land strip-mined for the coal that remained. But on Klondike Road, the 2-story "superintendant's house" remains (zoom in to find it). The cleared area just past that house is where the Cecil Dendy family - Cecil, Vada, John & Ned - lived, 1941-1955 (Ned was born in 1945 after WWII, as were so many other children in the area. Cecil referred to Klondike Road as "Diaper Row"). Their old house is now located on Arrow Road in Jasper.

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