Hank Williams’ daughter, 1953 Cadillac, historic marker make “Last Ride” to Oak Hill, Virginia
Following the March 21 Montgomery premiere “I Saw the Light,” the Hank Williams film featuring Tom Hiddleston and Elizabeth Olsen, the Alabama Tourism Department will make its own “Last Ride” to deliver a historic marker to be installed in Oak Hill, W. Va.
Oak Hill is where, Williams’ driver Charles Carr discovered that the legendary country music performer had died in the back seat of his 1952 Cadillac. It was New Year’s Day 1953, when Carr pulled over at a Pure Oil gas station and realized Williams was dead. The musician was being driven to a concert in Ohio.
Hank Williams’ daughter, performer Jett Williams, will join the Alabama Tourism Department for the re-enactment of Williams’ final tour.
Also accompanying the tour will be a powder blue 1953 Cadillac almost identical to the one that Hank Williams traveled in on the trip.
The tour will leave Montgomery on March 22 and then visit Birmingham’s Redmont hotel, where Hank Williams spent his final night, and Fort Payne, where the vintage barber chair in which he received his last shave and haircut on the morning of Dec. 31, 1952 is in Beason’s Barber Shop.
On March 23, the tour will visit the site of the former Andrew Johnson Hotel in downtown Knoxville, where Williams briefly stayed Dec. 30, 1952. The former hotel is now occupied by the Knox County Board of Education and has been renamed the Andrew Johnson Building.
On March 24, the tour will conclude at Oak Hill, W. Va., where on Jan. 1, 1953 Carr pulled over only to find that the famous singer had died in the back seat. His body was taken to the Tyree Funeral Home in Oak Hill. The historic marker will be dedicated at 10:30 a.m. on Main Street (State Route 16) beside the American flag at the Lively Family Amphitheater.
For more information, contact:
Rick Harmon, Regional Director
Alabama Department of Tourism