That little town — more a hamlet, really — is called Deepstep, and I’ve marked it for a stop since. On the way home from Augusta (part 1, part 2), I finally had the opportunity.
What a great little spot.
The gallery’s only eighteen photographs, but absolutely a worthy addition to the newly revised Middle Georgia group. Those galleries cover everything from Pine Mountain in the west to Sandersville in the east, Madison in the north to Dublin in the south.
Indeed, I’ve rearranged pretty much all of the Georgia galleries:
As mentioned yesterday, I’ve been meaning to get to downtown Augusta with a camera for years. Actually, that not correct: I’ve been meaning to get to downtown Augusta . . . period. I’d never been there, despite living 130 miles away for almost two decades, despite having been nearby, despite — well, you get the idea.
So it was a pleasure to get to the home of Woodrow Wilson, James Brown, Jessye Norman, and countless others — and see a city a lot like so many others in the American South, a city that’s struggling with identity, history, vacancy, gentrification, and so many other issues prevalent in the 2020s.
One of them is the continued presence of a huge Confederate memorial, a shame in a majority-Black city — and just in front of the Lamar Building, soon to be luxury apartments. What message are Augusta, and its new luxury residents, sending?
Nonetheless, the day’s efforts resulted in some satisfying images, from architecture to neat details:
Augusta is a riverfront city I’m looking forward to returning to. In the meantime, please enjoy a total of 128 photographs in the newly-posted gallery.
If you’re in or going to be going to Columbus anytime soon, I cannot recommend it highly enough. The food was superlative, the service excellent, and the ambiance simultaneously upscale, casual, and fresh.
The second — and no less tasty — stop was the Ma Rainey Museum of the Blues. This period house downtown is small but demonstrates a remarkable comeback from the (literal) wreckage they started with in the ’90s. I’d originally wanted to return to the Columbus Museum, but it’s being renovated; Gerald’s suggestion here was pitch-perfect.
Inside, Gerald and I enjoyed a lengthy conversation with Xavier, a guide who was knowledgeable and enthusiastic; he absolutely made us want to explore more blues history. (I’m also going to be listening to some Ma Rainey on Tidal.)
Meanwhile, gallery of Columbus photographs is deep and varied, spanning almost fifteen years and 180 items — check it out.
Macon County, Georgia, hosts Montezuma, a railroad crossroads on the Flint River. Officially dating to 1851, it was named after the Aztec leader by soldiers returning from the Mexican-American War.
I’ve been meaning to stop with a camera for a while, but it’s always been a pass-through on the way elsewhere — the route from Macon to Andersonville, Americus, and all points southwest go through Montezuma — but it’s taken until now to actually stop.
Like a substantial part of rural Georgia, Montezuma has fallen on increasingly hard times; the population continues to drop1See Wiki’s article., the empty storefronts multiply, and many of the beautiful old Southern houses need some attention:
There’s an attractive downtown, though, with old brick buildings and a wonderful historic railroad depot:
Did I mention that it’s a railroad crossing? There are two sets downtown:
Despite the population loss and storefronts marked “for rent,” however, all isn’t lost. There are some new businesses opening:
I’ve posted 55 photographs in the new Montezuma gallery — peruse and enjoy. And, as always, thanks for stopping by.
I had the occasion to have lunch downtown yesterday, a day of simply beautiful spring weather — which I absolutely used as an excuse to take the camera for a spin.
The vast majority of the time, I use what I call my standard lens: 35mm. (Some would argue that 50mm is the “standard,” but I really prefer the wider angle of view due to its additional context.) This time, however, I was using Leica’s superb — and, sadly, no longer available — 90mm macro. The detail, the color, everything about this lens excels:
It’s sometimes a challenge to be creative in an area you’ve photographed often, but I enjoy trying to spy new details:
After leaving Zebulon (see below) last Thursday, I continued northeast into the beautiful spring morning. My destination was Senoia, a town of about 5,000 that has a lovely, old-time feel, and is usually busy due to its “touristy” nature. There’s a film studio (!), and major productions like Driving Miss Daisy and The Walking Dead have used it for a location. Plus, given its proximity to Atlanta, it’s a popular day trip for city dwellers looking for a getaway.
Gerald and I were there last April, and while I had a camera with me, I only took a few photographs and didn’t like any of them. But a church window had stuck in my head, we enjoyed the visit, and I determined to return.
This time: success. Starting with that church window:
Elsewhere in the historic district, fantastic Southern porches await:
While amongst the dogwood blossoms, there was even a porch for our feathered friends:
But it’s downtown that folks come to visit:
Plenty of history here, too:
A total of 57 photographs — clearly, it was a good time — have been posted to the Senoia gallery. No matter the weather where you are, wander a picturesque small town on a beautiful spring day.
We’re having an absolutely beautiful March here in Georgia — apologies to places that absolutely aren’t — and I’ve been trying to take advantage by getting out and taking photographs.
The latest photostroll starts in the small town (pop. 1225) of Zebulon1Named for Zebulon Pike, the general and explorer (for whom Colorado’s Pike’s Peak is named, among other things), in Pike County, northwest of Macon, with the typical courthouse square:
The building, from 1895 and on the National Register of Historic Places, is wonderfully detailed, sporting columns aplenty and lots of Colonial Revival details:
The small downtown is well-kept and bustling in a way that small downtowns should be:
Confession: For the last several years, I’ve been avoiding Eatonton. Its four-lane bypass is notorious as a revenue generator for Putnam County, so when heading north to Madison or Athens I have been taking the prettier Monticello route instead.
My mistake. In almost twenty years of living less than fifty miles from this gem — and perhaps because of that bypass — I’d not explored downtown. It’s definitely earned another visit.
I also wasn’t aware that Alice Walker (The Color Purple) and Joel Harris (Uncle Remus) were locals — the latter explaining the prevalence of rabbits hopping about:
Spring is beginning to blossom here in Middle Georgia, which means it’s time to restart the traditional Sunday drive and photostroll. This week’s destination was the small city of Jackson, seat of Butts County, and home to a typically pretty downtown square:
The courthouse, as is often the case in Georgia, takes center stage:
No, I usually don’t make political commentary. Why do you ask?
Anyway, there are several examples of my architectural studies, including these:
I didn’t realize that Jackson was the filming location for Stranger Things — a stand-in for Hawkins, Indiana:
Named for the city in Ireland, Dublin in Georgia is an hour or so southeast of Macon. It’s my third trip there, and, like last time, I enjoyed Gerald’s company.1He seemed to enjoy the trip, rain notwithstanding, but apparently the creative juices didn’t flow. (Sorry, man.) Details here.
It has a photogenic downtown, too:
The Welcome Park includes a clock and bell complete with clover, reminding visitors that the name is, in fact, a tribute:
As has become typical, my favorite — “best” is debatable, of course — shot is a close-up that’s almost an abstract. In this case, a turquoise box car in the appropriately-named Railroad Park:
Just off the main drag we found an item thankfully not yet painted over:
. . . Which may, in fact, be a holdover from a bygone era. In fact, I’d be remiss if I didn’t call this subject out:
The only people of color depicted here are Native Americans, relegated to viewing (probably from afar), and two Blacks, very much shown “in their place.” (Dublin still prominently features a Confederate memorial, as well.) Let’s hope that this small city continues its journey into the 21st century, one step at a time.
See the updated gallery here. As always, once in the gallery, click on any photograph to start a slide show.
He seemed to enjoy the trip, rain notwithstanding, but apparently the creative juices didn’t flow. (Sorry, man.) Details here.
The small city of Milledgeville, on the banks of the Oconee River in nearby Baldwin County, is a favorite for photography. In this case, Gerald and I stopped on our way home from Sandersville, and spent some time wandering the historic district.
I especially liked this gate:
We were these the day after (part of) the Deep Roots Festival, which meant some street decorations lingered:
Sandersville, seat of Washington County, was the photography destination this past weekend. Gerald and I wanted to get out and enjoy this beautiful stretch of fall weather, and this small city — with its National Register-listed cemetery (more on that tomorrow) — hadn’t yet been explored.
There was a pleasant little park off what I’m calling Courthouse Square (it doesn’t seem to actually be named that):
The Washington County Courthouse is a beautiful and historic building, like many here in Georgia:
Last weekend, Gerald and I took a summer road trip and photostroll through southwest Georgia — with stops in Andersonville and Americus.
Andersonville is a sobering place: “The deadliest ground of the American Civil War.” Further:
Nearly 13,000 men died on these grounds, a site that became infamous even before the Civil War ended. Their burial grounds became Andersonville National Cemetery, where veterans continue to be buried today. This place, where tens of thousands suffered captivity so others could be free, is also home to the National Prisoner of War Museum and serves as a memorial to all American prisoners of war.
National Park Service
We just visited the National Cemetery section of the park, with its closely-spaced Civil War graves, memorials, and reminders that it’s still in use today.
Later, we headed just down the road to the small city of Americus:
Both galleries — Andersonville and Americus — have been updated with new photographs. The new items start with “2022,” and remember that clicking on any photograph starts a slide show for that gallery. Thank you!
As promised, I returned to Madison, Georgia, to complete the gallery my camera battery didn’t permit last time. Special thanks to Gerald, who accompanied me around the beautiful downtown historic district and on the lovely drive from here to there.
This round is mostly details, taken with my stunning new Leica APO lens. (Introduced in this Macon post.) The whole line has been discontinued, so I am incredibly glad to have gotten one while they’re still available — every single photograph shows just how good this lens is. I’ll try to do it justice:
I’ve revamped the gallery with the new shots mixed in with the old. Several are improved versions of shots taken last time, meaning those were deleted in favor of the new ones.
132 Madison photographs have been posted in all. Peruse and enjoy; remember to click on any individual photograph to start a slide show, and if you’d like, click “buy” to get options for fine art prints in a variety of sizes and finishes. Thank you!