Alabama Room hosts fall meeting, book signing

Published 4:01 pm Saturday, September 23, 2023

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On Sep. 17 bookworms, genealogy enthusiasts, and history buffs gathered at the Hayneville/Lowndes County Public Library for the fall meeting of the Alabama Room as well as a book signing by John Brightman Brock. 

Brock is a two-time published book author as well as a veteran journalist and editor of newspapers and magazines for over 43 years with deep roots in Lowndes County.

Carolyn Parker acknowledged the purpose of the Alabama Room’s formation as well as its significance for Brock.

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“The Alabama Room was formed for heritage, genealogy, and history of the families of Lowndes County or connecting families from other counties or states,” Parker said. “When the First Presbyterian Church was formed in Lowndesboro, it was his [Brock’s] ancestors, so his family was here from the very beginning, back to the early 1800’s.”

Attendees of the fall meeting enjoyed refreshments as Brock shared some of his experiences as a traditional journalist who grew up in Hayneville and led a discussion about his second book, “Last Days: of ‘Traditional Journalism,’” which touches on the ways journalism has changed over the years.

While “Last Days: of ‘Traditional Journalism’” will not be released until October, attendees of the fall Alabama Room meeting had the opportunity to purchase advance signed copies of the book. 

Brock said his book signing was held at the Alabama Room as a way to pay homage to his Lowndes County ancestry.

“My great grandfather was the editor of the Hayneville Citizen-Examiner and it was passed down through my family,” Brock said. “That newspaper is now the Lowndes Signal. I have so many ties to journalism and also to Lowndes County, so they allowed me to come speak at the Alabama Room.”

Brock also said that as both a Hayneville resident and a member of the Alabama Room, he is impressed and intrigued with the research and findings that are made within the walls of the library.

“The Alabama Room is more than 700 members strong and the library allows us to use a portion of the building for the Alabama Room,” Brock said. “We love to trace our histories, and what we find out is that we are all kind of related in some way or another and that’s just very interesting to me.”

Those who are interested in researching their genealogy are encouraged to visit the Hayneville/Lowndes County Public Library and The Alabama Room, which contains over 600 historical and genealogical research books, family histories, maps, notes of local researchers and microfilm of probate records dating from the 1830s to 1900.

Brock’s newest publication, Last Days: “of Traditional Journalism” is available for preorder now on Amazon and will be available to the public on Oct. 2.