University of South Alabama, Office of Public Relations
 

April 18, 2008
Contact: Jennifer Z. Ekman, Office of Public Relations, (251) 460-6360

USA Writer-in-Residence Gaillard Publishes Two New Books
and Contributes to a Third
Themes Include Alabama Coast, Southern Culture
 
Mr. Frye Gaillard
 

University of South Alabama Writer-in-Residence and acclaimed Civil Rights author Frye Gaillard has recently published two new books and written a chapter in a third.

“In the Path of the Storms: Bayou La Batre, Coden and the Alabama Coast,” which was written by Gaillard, Sheila Hagler and Peggy Denniston, explores these coastal communities whose roots extend back to the French settlements of the 18th century. The book explores the changing culture of the towns due to higher gas prices, cheaper imported seafood and the devastation of hurricanes, including Katrina in 2005. The book also chronicles the unique culture added to the area through the Vietnamese, Cambodian and Laotian immigrants of the 1970s and their descendents.

Upcoming book-signings for “In the Path of the Storms” are scheduled for: The Blessing of the Fleet in Bayou La Batre, throughout the day on Sunday, May 4; Alma Bryant High School, 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday, May 9, as part of the “Celebrating Our Bayou Heritage” event; and at Bellingrath Gardens and Home, from 10 to 11 a.m. on Wednesday, June 11. This University of Alabama Press book is available at local bookstores.
   
With Music and Justice For All: Some Southerners and Their Passions
  

“With Music and Justice For All: Some Southerners and Their Passions” includes a collection of Gaillard’s work over the years as he chronicled the heroes and the foot soldiers of the Civil Rights movement and a changing South. The book includes interviews with Southerners such as former President Jimmy Carter, Billy Graham and Johnny Cash, as well as an interview Gaillard had with John T. Scopes, of the famous “Monkey Trial,” during Scopes’ final public appearance in Tennessee. Gaillard’s take on the Southern experience examines the region from a cultural, historical, religious and musical angle. The book, published by Vanderbilt University Press, will be signed this weekend at the Alabama Book Festival in Montgomery from 10:30 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 19.

Gaillard also contributed a chapter to the collection, “American Crisis, Southern Solutions: From Where We Stand, Promise and Peril.” In that piece, he profiled Dr. Regina Benjamin, who for years has struggled to care for a diverse and underinsured population in Bayou La Batre.

She has battled insurance companies and natural disasters, including damage done by Hurricane Katrina. The collection was published by New South Books.
   

Since 2005, Gaillard has been a Writer-in-Residence in the history and English departments at USA. His experiences as a journalist, author, freelance writer and founder of a publishing house have allowed him to become a mentor for students.

Gaillard received his bachelor’s degree in history from Vanderbilt University in 1968. He began his career as a reporter for daily newspapers in the late 1960s, writing about the Civil Rights Movement as it unfolded across the South. As a reporter, and later an editor for The Charlotte Observer, he covered the integration of that North Carolina city's schools by busing, Elvis Presley's funeral, former President Jimmy Carter, and the Praise the Lord network led by Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker.

Since 2005, Gaillard has been a Writer-in-Residence in the history and English departments

American Crisis, Southern Solutions: From Where We Stand, Promise and Peril
  
at USA. His experiences as a journalist, author, freelance writer and founder of a publishing house have allowed him to become a mentor for students.
   
Gaillard received his bachelor’s degree in history from Vanderbilt University in 1968. He began his career as a reporter for daily newspapers in the late 1960s, writing about the Civil Rights Movement as it unfolded across the South. As a reporter, and later an editor for The Charlotte Observer, he covered the integration of that North Carolina city's schools by busing, Elvis Presley's funeral, former President Jimmy Carter, and the Praise the Lord network led by Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker.

Since 1990, Gaillard has been a writer, author and editor for newspapers and books. He also was the founding editor of the Novello Festival Press in Charlotte, a national award-winning literary publishing company.

In 2000, Gaillard began a three-year research and writing project about the Civil Rights Movement that led to his book “Cradle of Freedom: Alabama and the Movement that Changed America.” The book won the 2005 Lillian Smith Award given by the Southern Regional Council in Atlanta. Previous winners include such luminaries as Alex Haley, Pat Conroy and Eudora Welty. He is the author of more than 20 books and has twice been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

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