Library name change a good move
Hartselle's William Bradford (Bill) Huie was an icon in the literary world for six decades.
He launched his writing career as a teenager by editing and publishing the weekly newspaper in his hometown, covered the early development of the Tennessee Valley Authority as a reporter for Scripps Howard Newspapers, served as a World War II correspondent in the U.S. Navy, and rose to the top as a print journalist in New York City and Washington, D.C. in the post-war era. His career really took off after that. He wrote 23 books, eight of which were made into movies. Combined, they sold more than 30 million copies.
He was writing his memoirs when he died in 1986 at the age of 76.
The re-naming of Hartselle Public Library in his memory is a no-brainer even though some Hartsellians opposed doing that in a recent Hartselle Enquirer poll. His literary accomplishments alone offer plenty of justification. Plus, his heart stayed in Hartselle even though he spent a lot of his time thousands of miles away in the company of national political leaders and Hollywood movie producers.
Bill Huie lived on Barkley Street in Hartselle for many years. He did much of his writing in a studio there and made daily visits to the post office to check his mail. It was not uncommon to see him exchanging greetings and pausing to chat with other postal patrons. He also accepted invitations to speak at meetings of community organizations such as the Booklovers Club and Thursday Morning Garden Club. His detailed and often humorous accounts of White House social activities, which were taken from his unpublished notes, were always a hit.
Huie's close connection to Hartselle was underscored by a statement he made in an interview with a Hartselle Enquirer reporter in June 1994.
"Hartselle will always be home to me because of the roots I have here. I'll always be an advocate and supporter of the welfare of Hartselle and its people," he said.
Credit belongs to former city official Andy Vest who launched the initiative to rename the library for Huie. The same goes for the library board and staff and elected city officials.
Hopefully, their leadership efforts won't stop with the changing of a name on the building's fa