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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Statesboro in Bulloch County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Willie McTell Trail

 
 
Willie McTell Trail Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Seibert, April 11, 2014
1. Willie McTell Trail Marker
Inscription. This trail commemorates Blind Willie McTell, 1903-1959. The great Georgia songster spent part of his boyhoo0d in Statesboro and told the US Library of Congress in 1940: “Statesboro is my real home.” William Samuel McTell, blind from birth, became the most important Georgia bluesman on record. An outstanding 12-string guitarist, fluid tenor and gifted songwriter, he recorded over 120 songs, mostly for major companies including Victor, Columbia, Decca and Atlantic Records. He became one of the state’s most widely beloved figures. More than a blues musician, he performed vaudeville, rags, pop, spirituals and gospel music. He learned some songs from his mother who lived and worked here and lies buried in Statesboro. As an adult, McTell returned to Statesboro often and entertained crowds at tobacco warehouses and the Jaeckel Hotel. After his death his “Statesboro Blues,” recorded in 1928, became a classic. This one mile trail parallels part of the Savannah & Statesboro Railway line. It is believed that Willie and his mother once lived in a home southwest of the corner of the tracks and East Cherry Street. It may be that this trail not only honors the artist, but retraces the footsteps of the boy and man.
 
Location. 32° 26.897′ N, 81° 46.822′ 
Willie McTell Trail Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Seibert, April 11, 2014
2. Willie McTell Trail Marker
Railroad Avenue is on the right in the photo.
W. Marker is in Statesboro, Georgia, in Bulloch County. Marker is on Railroad Street 0.1 miles north of East Vine Street, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. The marker stands between the Willie McTell Trail and Railroad Street. Marker is in this post office area: Statesboro GA 30458, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Fabulous Fifty of 1906 / The Delegates (within shouting distance of this marker); Statesboro Confederate Monument (approx. 0.2 miles away); The March to the Sea (approx. 0.2 miles away); Bulloch County Courthouse (approx. 0.2 miles away); Bulloch County (approx. 0.2 miles away); First Baptist Church of Statesboro (approx. 0.3 miles away); Eastside Cemetery (approx. half a mile away); United States vs. Darby Lumber Company (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Statesboro.
 
Regarding Willie McTell Trail. It is believed that McTell's actual family name was either McTier or McTear. His tombstone, near Thomson, Georgia, gives his birthname as "Willie Samuel McTier."
 
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker.
 
Also see . . .
1. More on the Life of Willie McTell. (Submitted on December 18, 2017, by David Seibert of Sandy Springs, Georgia.)
2. Lyrics of Bob Dylan song, "Blind Willie McTell".
Blind Willie McTell image. Click for full size.
By Georgia Music Hall of Fame
3. Blind Willie McTell
Dylan's song was covered by The Allman Brothers Band (a band from Macon, Georgia, who also covered "Statesboro Blues"), The Band, and Stephen Stills among many others. (Submitted on December 18, 2017, by David Seibert of Sandy Springs, Georgia.) 
 
Categories. African AmericansArts, Letters, Music
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on December 19, 2017. This page originally submitted on December 18, 2017, by David Seibert of Sandy Springs, Georgia. This page has been viewed 80 times since then and 27 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on December 18, 2017, by David Seibert of Sandy Springs, Georgia.
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