Mount Mitchell State Park

Monday, June 3, 2013

Watt Espy, Coming Full Circle

This is Watt Espy at probably two years of age, circa 1935.  In the background is his maternal great-grandparents' residence, the old Edgar Lindsey home.   Watt inherited the home from his mother, and back in the 1980s, after returning from Tuscaloosa to Headland, Alabama, not only lived in this home, but founded his unique and vaunted Capital Research Project there.  Uncle Watty lived and worked in the home at least through 2000.

I didn't know that this was the Old Edgar Lindsey home, mainly because the dirt road made me think this had to be out in the country somewhere.  The roof and the porch, though, may be think again.  To get confirmation, I consulted the only person who could give me a definitive answer:  Henry County Historian, Larry Smith.  Sure enough.......

That is the Lindsey home.  The lot next to it is grown up.  The street is dirt.  Headland's first paved street was in 1936 when the Public Square was paved.  It was a while before the street in front of the Lindsey House was paved. 

The home appears to have been constructed in the early 1900's.  I have no idea who the contractors or builders were .  The home is located about where the first little Baptist church and cemetery and school was located in 1867.  This church was called The Church of Christ at Bethlehem; it grew into the Headland Baptist Church at which time the little Baptist Church east of Headland asked to have the name Bethlehem for their church and then was so named The Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church that stands today on hwy 134 east.  The Headland Academy next stood about where Watty's house is in the 1880's and early 1890's until the District School was built where the Headland Elementary School is today.
 
Larry
 
To see the home as it was in the late 1980s and early 90s, I would encourage to go here and watch the first couple of videos in the second block of videos:  the CNN one and Fox News one.  On the same page, there's a great image of Uncle Watty standing out beside his home.  There's also some more historical information about the home as well as some photos of the home after it was renovated not too long ago.  Finally, for some video footage of the home in 2007, you might enjoy seeing the blog post, Watt Espy's Last Interview, where his friend - and death penalty cohort - goes back to the home to reminisce. 

Henry County historian Larry Smith also believes this is the Edgar Lindsey home.  This photo belonged to Uncle Watty.  We have no idea who the children or adults are, but my best guess is that they are some of Watty's cousins on his mother's side.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Looks like Bear Bryant lost an opportunity for a good recruit (if
that's a football he's cradling). That's a classic, Norman Rockwell type of photo. Jim

Anonymous said...

This is a real treasure – he’s so cute! And I do recognize the house. Allen, thanks so much for sending this and please send anything else you find. - Margaret