Georgiana in Butler County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)
City of Georgiana / GA~ANA Theatre
Founded in 1855 / Opened 1939
Early settlers moved from Virginia, the Carolinas, Kentucky, Tennessee and Georgia into the deep forests of southern Butler County. In 1855, the Rev. Pitt S. Milner established a home-stead and post office 16 miles south of Greenville that he named Georgiana in honor of his home state and daughter Anna. The Louisville & Nashville Railroad reached here on July 4, 1859. After the Civil War, cotton, corn, oats and sweet potatoes were grown for market. Georgiana flourished as a railroad hub, logging town and trade center in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Hank Williams, whose father was a logger, loved here from age 7 to 11.
While watching Westerns at a Georgiana ‘picture show’ on Saturdays in 1931-34, young Hiram Williams developed a fondness for cowboy nicknames and clothing. After his family moved to Montgomery in 1936, he began calling himself ‘Hank.’ Fred McClendon opened the GA~ANA Theatre on Jan. 31, 1939. Eight months later, 16-year-old Hank performed here with his band, The Drifting Cowboys. The movie theatre closed in 1959 and was used for storage and a cabinet shop. When demolition was threatened in 1996, J.C. Sims purchased the theatre. It was renovated for movies and live performances
Erected 2006 by the Alabama Bureau of Tourism and Travel.
Location. 31° 38.157′ N, 86° 44.505′ W. Marker is in Georgiana, Alabama, in Butler County. Marker is at the intersection of East Railroad Avenue and Jones Street, on the right when traveling north on East Railroad Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 602 East Railroad Avenue, Georgiana AL 36033, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 16 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Hank Williams’ Boyhood Home / Thigpen’s Log Cabin Popular Dance Hall (approx. ¼ mile away); Old Federal Road (approx. 12.8 miles away); Pioneer Electric Cooperative (approx. 13.9 miles away); West Commerce Street Historic District/Historic Greenville Depot (approx. 15 miles away); Pioneer Cemetery (approx. 15 miles away); Our Confederate Dead (approx. 15.1 miles away); Confederate Park/Greenville City Hall-Site of Public School (approx. 15.1 miles away); The Camellia City/Greenville (approx. 15.1 miles away).
Also see . . . City of Georgiana on Wikipedia. (Submitted on July 26, 2015, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.)
Categories. • Entertainment • Railroads & Streetcars • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 26, 2015, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 306 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 26, 2015, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.