Landmarks Society reveals local parish birthday plans
There’ll be three events over the weekend of Oct. 14-16 celebrating the 200th anniversary of St. Mary Parish.
Pam Heffner, representing St. Mary Landmarks Society, told the Franklin City Council about the lineup Tuesday.
They include a cemetery tour in its second year, a resurrected tour of homes and the premiere performance of a live production derived from local history.
Heffner pointed out that in 1811, St. Mary and St. Martin parishes were formed out of the Attakapas territory, with Franklin as the parish seat of St. Mary.
“We were known as Carlin’s Settlement,” she said of the city, noting that later generations added an “e” to the name to become Carline. “They were big landowners in this area. They owned Arlington Plantation and sadly…over the years they lost it all.”
She recounted several other descendants of some of the original families of St. Mary Parish who still live in the parish today.
Landmarks has slated a cemetery tour that will be “bigger, Teddy Roosevelt will be there visiting his friend…we’re going to have Ada and the Doc, who were hung in front of our courthouse after being convicted of killing Ada’s husband, and other historical characters brought to life in reenactments.
The Grevemberg House at City Park will be “dressed in mourning, just as it would have been in the 1800s when a wealthy family was dealing with the death of a family member.”
The steel coffin on display at the Grevemberg House Museum will be used as a prop. “You’ll learn the history of how a death was dealt with within a family in that period,” Heffner said. “We’re going to encourage people to go to our historic churches, Asbury Methodist on Main Street, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church and Assumption Catholic Church will all be open.”
She said the Masonic temple on Main Street will also be open, with the newly repaired elevator available. “The Masons are all familiar with (the building), but the everyday person doesn’t have an opportunity to go into it,” she said.
Techeland Arts Council will be presenting “No Hitchin’” over the weekend as well.
Landmarks will be hosting a tour of homes on Sunday.
Times and other details will be announced at a later date.
“This could be the beginning of something big for Franklin, where people will expect this on an annual basis,” Heffner said. “They’ll stay at our hotels and eat at our restaurants and walk away with a wonderful feeling about our town.”
Heffner asked the council to consider a contribution to Landmarks to help make the weekend a success.
After a brief discussion, the mayor and council agreed to fund the Landmarks’ proposed advertising budget at $3,000.