Walking tours in Madison’s historic district to reveal history, legend and humor
MADISON – Longtime residents and newcomers alike can learn historical facts, trivia and anecdotes during April Walking Tours in Madison’s historic district.
Madison is joining 32 other towns and cities across Alabama to host the free, guided tours. Reservations aren’t necessary. Alabama Tourism Department sponsors the event.
Two Madison natives will serve as guides. Cindi Sanderson will lead the tour on April 19 and Charles Sturdivant on April 26. Both tours will start at 10 a.m. at the Roundhouse on Front Street and last about one hour.
“My roots go back to 1828 in Madison,” Sanderson said. Her favorite downtown spot is Madison United Methodist Church. “I didn’t grow up in that church but first went there when James and I started dating. In 1977, we got married there and have attended church there since.”
Madison UMC’s “sanctuary is beautiful. I absolutely love the chimes. There’s just nothing like walking around when the chimes are ringing or playing a hymn,” Sanderson said.
During her youth, Sanderson frequently visited Main Street businesses. “I loved going to Barbara’s Dress Shop, where Jacklyn’s Keepsakes is now. I actually still have a dress that was purchased there that I just can’t part with,” Sanderson said.
In the early 1970s, she volunteered with a gymnastics class at a dance studio on Main Street.
“My granddaddy wouldn’t let anyone but Mr. Hoyt Shelton cut his hair” at Shelton’s Barber Shop, she said.
At Hughes Hardware, “you could find just about anything. Mr. Gene Anderson or someone else working there would dig around and find whatever you needed,” she said. “James and I went there often after we purchased our first home.”
However, Sanderson’s favorite business was the drug store. “There were nothing like their ice cream cones and fountain drinks. I think about it every time I see the drug store on ‘The Andy Griffith Show,'” she said.
For more information, call Jessica Carlton at 256-551-2294, email to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit huntsville.org/WalkingTours.