June 3, 2009---Did not take in so many historical sites today, but certainly enjoyable.
A tour of the only Frank Lloyd Wright home ever built in the state of Alabama was enjoyed with mixed emotions. The 2500 sq foot home was constructed for the Rosenbaum family in 1939. The house and grounds was purchased by the city of Florence in 1999 and renovated to save the work of art. Frank was a visionary architect of the time. The home featured radiant heat under the concrete slab and a three tier flat roof that allowed space for small, decorative, overhead windows to let in outside light. A lot of storage was built into the home since there is no basement and no attic. Lots of large windows face south toward the Tennessee River. The trees on the back of the 2 acre lot have grown over the years blocking the river view.
We returned to the North Alabama University to see if the lions were out of their shady cave. Leo III was lying down in view, but his twin sister Una was already hiding. Leo chose not to get up while we took pictures. The lions are the school mascots and go to football games in special cages.
Left the city of Florence and drove back to Tuscumbia, Alabama to see the birthplace and home of Helen Keller. The two stories home is located on well groomed acreage with huge magnolia trees. It was built in 1820 and called “Ivy Green” . It is a permanent shrine and placed on the National Register of Historic places. Certainly well cared for and the lady who guided us thru it was very pleasant. The story of Helen’s life is quite fascinating. She was born June 27, 1880 as a healthy child. At the age of 18 months she was stricken with a severe illness that left her deaf and blind. How she mastered Braille by age 10, learned to speak and went on to become a graduate of Radcliffe College is truly remarkable. She became known as “America’s First Lady of Courage”. She dedicated her life to improving the conditions of blind and deaf-blind around the world.