Thursday, January 3, 2013

Dalton GA's Favorite Storyteller: Jane Harrell

Dalton GA's Favorite Storyteller: Jane Harrell
Southern towns love their stories and their storytellers. What would Dalton, Georgia be without stories of how this small southern town became the Carpet Capital of the World? And before that, the bedspread capital, or an important center of the Cherokee nation? Stories about our collective history are as much a part of life to Southerners as grits and gravy.
In his December 7, 2012 column titled "Telling Stories with Jane Harrell" for Dalton’s Daily Citizen newspaper, Carpet and Rug Institute President Werner Braun talks about one of the Dalton community’s favorite storytellers, local magazine author and radio personality Jane Harrell. A Florida native, Jane and her family moved to Dalton in 1971. Soon after, Jane started doing brief segments on a local radio station, and has been on the air with her “Southern Scenes” ever since.

“Jane and I are both history buffs, so naturally, I love the little-known historical tidbits I pick up listening to “Southern Scenes,” like how the federal reserve banking system was formed on Jekyll Island, or how the CSS Hunley, the first-ever successful submarine, was built and operated, and ultimately lost just outside of Charleston Harbor by the Confederates in 1864. 
 But what I like most of all is the way every “Southern Scenes” segment offers something more than just history. Somehow, Jane always manages to work a little life lesson in with the dates and details, giving us not only an interesting story, but also a reminder about how much we all have to be grateful for, and how lucky we are to live in this great area and this country.

‘It doesn’t have to be a big event — I like the small stories better, actually,” Jane told me once. Things like how to eat a ‘sink sandwich.’ That’s a sandwich you make when the tomatoes are so ripe in the summertime you have to stand over the sink and let the juice run down your arms when you eat it. If you listen to what people talk about you can always hear something interesting.’

Thank you, Jane, for making us all feel a little bit more at home, and for spotlighting the people and stories that make up the “Southern Scenes” of life in our community.”

Thank you, Werner.
~ Bethany

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