History Alive Brings History To Life

Since 2013, through History Alive, we’ve brought to life the history of Dunwoody and our surrounding community through speakers and workshops on a range of interesting topics – from how to trace your family genealogy to the story of the little train that once ran in front of the Donaldson-Bannister Farm. Through History Alive, we also offer tours of Dunwoody’s historic cemeteries, where some of Dunwoody’s earliest settlers are laid to rest, and participation in a variety of events related to historical traditions.

2021 Programs:

  • January 16th – “A Salute to the Life of Martin Luther King Jr.”
  • March 20th – “A Short History of Barbecue in America”, Speaker Jim Auchmutey
  • May 15th – “Fighting Fascism with Film”, Speaker John Thomas (Tom) Scott, Ph.D.
  • July 17th – “Beyond Vietnam: MLK and the Vietnam War”, Speaker Doug Thompson
  • September 18th – “Secret Atlanta: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure”, Speaker Jonah McDonald
  • November 20th – “The Cherokees of Southern Appalachia: A talk and show-&-tell”, Speaker Mark Warren

Recent History Alive topics:

  • Underwater Ghost Towns of North Georgia
  • The Ancient Ways of the Cherokee
  • Children of the Holocaust
  • How to trace your family genealogy
  • The Roswell Mill
  • The “Dinky” and the Roswell Railroad

Recent History Alive events:

  • Tours of the New Hope and Stephen Martin cemeteries
  • Sacred harp singing at Ebenezer Primitive Baptist Church, Dunwoody’s oldest church
  • DPT Antiques Roadshow, at which people’s antique treasures were appraised

Follow our events calendar for the schedule of our next History Alive topics.

History Alive – July 17, 2021, 9:30-11am

Beyond Vietnam: MLK and the Vietnam War

In his civil rights work, Martin Luther King, Jr. had to keep his thoughts on the peace movement separate from his civil rights work. Or at least he thought so. If anyone remembers King’s peace work, they will often reference his speech at Riverside Church, NYC, April 4, 1967, as the one time he spoke out. Later referred to as the “Beyond Vietnam” speech, it was a full-throated jeremiad against America’s presence in Vietnam. But earlier that winter, he drafted a deeply confessional piece titled “A Journey of Conscience” in which he claimed his lukewarm pronouncement in 1965 against the military buildup was no different than the blame he laid at the feet of the “moderate” white voices described in “Letter” from Birmingham Jail. King had registered his objection to the military presence in Southeast Asia as early as September 1964. This talk examines the evolving position Martin Luther King, Jr., took regarding the war in Vietnam and how his nonviolent campaign at home had a grander vision within American foreign policy

Dr. Doug Thompson’s teaching and research interests include 20th-century American history. He has published an account of 1950s Richmond, Virginia, and the ways that religious persons engaged in the civil rights movement or the political response to it known as Massive Resistance. Currently, he is working on a book about Martin Luther King, Jr., and the war in Vietnam. He teaches courses in history at Mercer University. A recipient of the 2009-10 Spencer B. King, Jr. Distinguished Professor Award, Dr. Thompson enjoys the classroom & helping students understand the interpretative moves that historians make while practicing their craft.

To be held at the Donaldson-Bannister Farm (4831 Chamblee-Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody, GA 30338).  Saturday, July 17, 2021 / 9:30-11am

$5 for DPT members. $10 for non DPT members. No reservations required.


Do you have special historical expertise you’d like to share? We’d love for you to be a speaker at one of our History Alive presentations.