Two dozen BCERA (Blount County Education Retirees) members and friends gather after touring the Scottsboro Boys Museum and hearing from its founder and director, Sheila Washington. On this year’s annual spring trip, members observed the architecture of Alabama’s extreme northeast Bridgeport community; examined memorabilia at the Stevenson Depot Museum; lunched at the McCutchen Magnolia Restaurant, former residence of 42-year Mayor J. D. Snodgrass; snagged bargains at the city’s famous Unclaimed Baggage; and savored frozen treats at Alabama’s longest continually operated eatery, the 150-year-old Payne’s Sandwich Shop and Soda Foundation.
Snodgrass served as mayor during the notorious Scottsboro Boys trials. Juries convicted all nine of the black teenage defendants on rape charges. Governor Robert Bentley visited the city in 2013 and signed their complete legislative exoneration.