One Tank Trips: Uncle Remus Museum

By: Jeff Anderson Email
By: Jeff Anderson Email

News 12 at 6, July 14, 2008

EATONTON, GA -- In this one tank trip, we're taking you about 100 miles down the road to Eatonton, Georgia.

That's where you'll find the Uncle Remus Museum and a tribute to one of the most famous authors of the late 1800's.

Joel Chandler Harris became one of the most famous writers of post-civil war America when he wrote down the Uncle Remus stories. And, his legacy lives on more than a century later in Eatonton.

“The Uncle Remus Museum was placed in the 1960's. It's a museum established to highlight the fact that Joel Chandler Harris was born in Eatonton," Museum Employee Eddie McElory said.

It's been Eddie's work home for several years where his job is to carry on the legacy of Joel Chandler Harris, the J.K. Rowling of his day.

You see, Harris wrote down the famous Uncle Remus stories many of you may know.

"It's called the Uncle Remus because Uncle Remus was a character in the stories Harris wrote down," Eddie continued.

Harris admitted he didn't come up with the stories, he simply wrote them down after learning them orally from the slaves on the plantation where he worked in Eatonton.

"This was probably one of the best known of his tales," Eddie said, while pointing to the Br'er Rabbit and the Tar Baby display.

The structure itself is made out of three old slave cabins from Harris' time. The inside is filled with slices of Harris' life and artifacts from the time when he lived.

"It houses memories from plantation times," Eddie said.

And, gives you an idea of what life was like back then.

"Anyone who wants to learn to pick cotton, they can," Eddie concluded.

All of this is just a quick trip east on I-20 and south on Highway 44. Just make sure you say hi to Br'er Rabbit when you get there.

Eatonton is also home to another famous author, Alice Walker who wrote the Color Purple.

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