County residents offered permanent gift

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Citizens and families connected to Shelby County can leave a lasting impression by buying an engraved brick to go in front of the Shelby County Archives, located in the 1854 county courthouse.

According to Bobby Joe Seales, president of the Historical Society, which operates from the old courthouse, the building will serve as the focal point of downtown Columbiana after the city’s renovation is complete.

Residents may purchase a brick for $100 and have a personalized message engraved on it before it is placed in front of the old courthouse.

Residents may choose 16-character messages in memory or in honor of a family member.

Many people have already taken advantage of the brick engraving, according to Seales.

Some are dedicating the message on the brick to their children or other family members.

&uot;You’d be surprised at what some people are putting on them,&uot; Seales said.

The deadline for buying engraved bricks is May 1.

Seales said the bricks will be ready for installation directly in front of the old courthouse facing Main Street by May 15. A total of 3,200 bricks are available.

Seales noted that the old Shelby County Courthouse turns 150 years old this year.

The old courthouse opened in 1854 and remained in service through 1907.

The old courthouse is one of three public buildings in Shelby County on the National Register of Historic Places.

According to Seales, the other two in the county are on the campus of the University of Montevallo.

All proceeds from the engraved bricks will go to the Shelby County Historical Society, a non-profit organization.

Seales said the Society will use the money to re-apply for matching funds of the Shelby County Quality of Life Enrichment Grant.

Seales said the society hopes to complete Phase Two of a historical project. Last year, he said the Society made an audio tape.

This year, he hopes to make a video tape to showcase the county’s historical attractions