Book takes readers on trip through local history

Published 2:23 pm Monday, November 3, 2008

By By Lydia Grimes – features reporter
Author John Appleyard takes readers back to the beginnings of Escambia County in his newest book, “A History of Brewton and East Brewton.”
A large group gathered at the Thomas E. McMillan Museum Tuesday to hear Appleyard discuss the new book. The museum houses the historical and genealogical materials gathered by the Escambia County Historical Society and is the place the group meets each month.
Appleyard was chosen as the writer of the latest book on this area by Tom McMillan, who is the son of Thomas E. McMillan, whose name graces the museum.
Appleyard is an author, lecturer, radio host, advertising executive and civic leader in Pensacola. He has written 110 books on local history, family institutional and corporate histories, as well as 118 mystery stories. He has won numerous awards for both his literary efforts and his work with community activities.
Appleyard describes himself as a “Northern transplant that took root in the South.” He has lived in Pensacola since 1950 when his work led him to the area. He is not new to Brewton and East Brewton as he is the author of another local book, “The T.R. Miller Mill Company, Inc. Story.”
In his book, Appleyard takes the reader back to the beginnings of Escambia County in general, and of Brewton and East Brewton in particular. From the first arrivals to this area until 1985, he has written of the most important milestones in the development of the area.
After Appleyard explained the writing of the book, almost every member of the Escambia County Historical Society and those who were guests stood in line waiting to purchase a copy and have Appleyard sign it.
Ann Biggs-Williams, a long-time member of the society, said she was pleased with Tuesday's turnout.
Jerry Simmons, president of the Escambia County Historical Society, praised the writer of the book.
Simmons' own book, “Flomaton Centennial Scrapbook,” is also for sale and it too, will benefit the society. Five dollars of each sale will go toward the Escambia County Historical Society Scholarship Fund.