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A Downhome Perspective on All Things Southern

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ON TARGET

OPINION PAGES CONTENTS

Education
Christmas story with children
This may be the most important section of the website.
Manners and Etiquette
Manners and Etiquette

Blog
Sharman's Blog
Baby Showers
Brooke in chair at baby shower

Photojournalism
Sam Gellerstedt

Southern Furniture Makers
Reid Bed



Organizing a Book Festival

Power Point You Are Your Own Best Publicist

Gardening

Destinations
Fort Mims Stockade

History
Mission San Luis

Art
Megan Portrait


Inspiration

Bear Bryant



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Panhandle Eagle Forum



Houston County Alabama History

Dothan High School 1916
Wilcox County, Alabama History

Wakefield
Bay County, Florida History
Bay County, Florida

The Write Life Cozy Mysteries

Mint Julep Mysteries
The Write Life Historical fiction of Creek Indian War/Family Saga/Romance

Swimming with Serpents


Book One in the Creek Family Saga

The Write Life/Historical Fiction of First Seminole War/Family Saga/Romance
In Pursuit
Book Two in the Creek Family Saga

On to Angola cover
Book Three in the Creek Family Saga
COWETA Creek Raid on Angola


Newly released.  Available on Amazon! 
Third in the Creek Family History Series: On to Angola: Race to Freedom
On to angola
THE WRITE LIFE OF SHARMAN BURSON RAMSEY
Sharman Burson Ramsey Books on Amazon

Wakefield: History and Recipes
Downhome Dothan: History and Recipes

Swimming with Serpents and In Pursuit  On to Angola --Historical Fiction

Mint Julep Mysteries -- Cozy Mysteries

From the Editor

On Southern Culture

We Southerners are a unique breed. Pride of place, manners bred into us from birth, the foods we eat, our bond with the land and our relationship with our family and friends make us who we are. Most practice true religion. For most of us football is nearly a religious experience.

Southern-style began as a genealogy website. It expanded to become a general interest website (generally anything I am interested in). Those interests evolved with the discovery that not only did this born and bred southerner have ancestors on the Mayflower and in Jamestown, signing the Magna Charta (on both sides) but among those Native Americans who originally inhabited these lands through both my mother's Vann line (Powhatan - Cleopatra and Opechancanough) but also through my father's Pettus line (Powhatan-Pocahontas and Kocoum).

You will see that history intrigues me, particularly the people and area in which I grew up, Southeast Alabama. Folks greet each other asking, "How's your mom an 'em?" Wondering how all those folks were related led me to doing lots of genealogy that many of you may find interesting. The same was true for Wilcox county, Alabama, my father's old stomping grounds and Escambia County, Alabama, where my mother was born, and now Bay County, Florida where my husband and I have retired. Of course, all of that took me back many generations and into the history and founding of this nation and those from which those ancestors came. This tapestry has threads that lead to fascinating people and their stories.

The discovery of my Native American heritage led to my novels, Swimming with Serpents and In Pursuit, published by Mercer University Press. I wondered what the world was like for my Cherokee 4th great grandmother. Finding Mayan DNA through Tribal DNA testing led to Mayans, Muscadine and Murder, one of my Mint Julep Mysteries. The Mint Julep Mysteries are set on a plantation inspired by my grandparents' home, Wakefield Plantation, in Furman, Wilcox County, Alabama now owned by my sister, cardiologist, Dr. Sylvia Burson Rushing and her husband Col. Tom Rushing.

I grew up in a privileged home, the daughter of a small town doctor and a stay at home mother who met my father after a World War in which my father served in the Philippines and my mother served as a nurse and earned a battle ribbon at the Battle of the Bulge. Mattie Martin, the black housekeeper who helped them raise their children, did much more than cook and keep house. She supported our parents in teaching us manners, morals and values and our place in the world. She was also the very best cook in town. The profound impact she made on me influenced my view of the world and the books I have written, including Mint Juleps and Murder, the second in the Mint Julep Mysteries. I combined the first three of that series in the Mint Julep Trilogy. Wakefield Plantation: Cookbook and Family History tells of the plantation that was the inspiration for those books.

If you have a wedding coming up you might enjoy reading about our daughter Brooke's home spun wedding. The Wedding Raising was a lot of fun! The "how to" might give you some ideas. I also share the Mother of the Groom perspective on a wedding as well.

Though my husband and I have reached a different stage of life now and have moved from the old family home in Dothan, Alabama, to Panama City, Florida, and our new adventure called retirement, I will continue to share with you more recipes and menus from my own Southern experience now with a Florida flair. 

I also threw in a few short stories you might enjoy. And do not neglect visiting the Inspiration pages. There's an interesting tale about Bear Bryant who was coach at the University of Alabama where I pledged Delta Delta Delta and my husband was a Pi Kappa Phi.

I am also a teacher (secondary and adjunct professor of Western Civilization) and my concern for the schools is something I write about on my blog. Links are to the left.

Welcome to this very personal view of the South. I hope you enjoy your visit.

Sharman Ramsey 

Webmaster
Roll Tide!

By the way, did I mention? My novels Swimming with Serpents and In Pursuit are available through KOBO, Independent Book Stores, Barnes and Noble, Mercer University Press, and Amazon. My cozy mysteries, the Mint Julep Mysteries, are available on Amazon as is Wakefield Plantation: history and cookbook of one southern family.




I am

a writer
who sings
 a song of the South. 
My heart beats in unison
with its people,
my soul is soothed 
by the sighs of  the wind
as it drifts through the needles
of the arrow straight pines
standing sentinal against the back drop
of a cerulean sky.
Sharman Burson Ramsey





Note from the author, July 28, 2018

Well, here we are. It is 2018. Joe, now 71, sits in the middle of this crew. Son, Drew,  and his wife, Brittany, on the left in the back, Steve and granddaughter Lily in the middle and daughter, Brooke, and Mike on the back. Daughter Cecily sits with grandsons George and Sam. The love of my life, Joel in the middle. And granddaughters, Megan and Molly, with me are on the right. We are at the Yacht Club out on the deck. We will have been married 49 years this November 8. These are our greatest accomplishments. Much has changed since I started this website in 1998 using Front Page, a web design program I taught myself to use. It is no longer on the market apparently, and is no longer supported. I now have an Apple computer and use kompozer, a free program,  to design these webpages.  I upload with Filezilla.

Nothing fancy. I would have been 48 then. It is now 20 years later. Lots has changed.

Joe retired from practicing law in Dothan, Alabama, and we decided to sell the old homeplace and move to our house in Panama City. We now live in a three story townhouse and have a house down the street that we use as a guest house.  The link takes you to the story of its remodel. We brought the gazebo and playhouse from the back yard in Dothan. The grandchildren love it.

Quite a life change. But one we really enjoy. I started writing books inspired by the discovery that my third great grandmother was Native American. The first was published in 2012 by Mercer University Press. Since promoting books is so physically challenging, I write because I love to write and not to achieve great glory. There are stories that need to be told. So I tell them  now and then I self-publish them. All skills I have taught myself. Fascinating the things you can learn!

"Getting old is not for sissies," my mother always said and I am in total accord.

But the blessings of life are in our family. Joe has dealt with serious health issues since this picture was taken. Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus, often diagnose wrongly as Alzheimers or Parkinson's, is an odd condition that takes a shunt to remove the water from the brain. After a serious infection with the first shunt that had to be removed, he then went to Shands in Gainesville and now has another shunt. Those symptoms that led us to get the shunt in the first place have been greatly helped by this second shunt. We are truly grateful.

My mother was in a wheel chair for the last thirty years of her life, and it looks like I am taking after her in that way as well as so many others. We have installed a chair lift in our three story townhouse that really helps on the bad days when arthritis flares up. When I could no longer climb into our Buick Enclave, I decided I, unlike Mother, I would get a hip replacement. All has gone well with that, praise God. We did shift from a Buick Enclave to a Honda Odyssey because it is lower and easier to get into and out of. My luncheon group commented on the fact that our topic of conversation has surely changed over the years. Now it is grandchildren (no. 1), eyes, ears, backs, knees, etc. You get the picture.

Let me share with you one of the dangers of living on the water in Florida. We have been told by many that this is pelican poop. It looks like a flock of pelicans, if you ask me. I am only glad I wasn't outside when that happened! Imagine being dive bombed by a flock of pelicans!


Odyssey with Pelican poo






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Ramsey Family 2017


Sharman with granddaughters
Megan getting pedicure


Fishing with Joe
Molly getting pedicure