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About Discovering Alabama

Hi, I’m Doug Phillips. Welcome to Discovering Alabama, the original, Emmy awarded, documentary series about the rich natural history and heritage of Alabama. 2014 was a special year for us. We celebrated our 30th anniversary. That’s right, we’ve been on the air 32 years now. Thanks to all of you for your support, we couldn’t do it without you.

doug-turkeyAlabama contains a remarkable array of nature, forests, rivers, wildlands, and wildlife €“abundant across a diverse landscape from the mountains to the prairielands to the gulf coast. This natural heritage is closely linked with the state’s cultural heritage. Alabama’s wildlands were integral to the daily lives of Native Americans who often celebrated nature in their spiritual practices. By the 1800s, Alabama’s plentiful game, timberlands, water, and soils were the lure for waves of settlers seeking this bounty of nature as their hope for a new life. Today, Alabama’s natural wonders are sought for recreation and are promoted as attractions to entice tourism, expanding growth, and industrial development. Discovering Alabama explores the many interesting and changing relationships between Alabama’s lands and people, from the past to the present.

An important aim of Discovering Alabama is to document this information for the citizens, communities, and schools of the state. But another concern of Discovering Alabama is to highlight the state’s natural history in a context useful for planning. In looking to the future, we can sometimes benefit from the wisdom of the past. Native Americans knew well the meaning of the adage, “The nature of life is nature.” Discovering Alabama brings to you a remarkable realm of nature in hopes that this aspect of our heritage is aptly embraced and retained for generations yet to arrive.

You are invited to tune in to Alabama Public Television or contact us for video purchase, and join me as we Discover Alabama.

Happy outings,
Dr. Doug


Click here to see the history of Discovering Alabama

Click here to see our available shows on iTunes U

Schedule a reminder for any upcoming Discovering Alabama Show. 





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DON'T MISS THIS! The Friends of Hurricane Creek will hold their annual potluck gathering on Tuesday, January 17th from 6-8 p.m. at Canterbury Chapel on the University of Alabama campus. The event will feature a presentation by John Wathen, long-time creek preservation advocate, who has been in Standing Rock, North Dakota for portions of the past several months, working to preserve sacred Native American sites there threatened by the well-publicized and controversial construction of a pipeline. Wathen will talk about his experiences at Standing Rock and his interest in saving those sacred site. He will also share how he is ever seeking to preserve sacred Native American sites on and along Hurricane Creek.

The get-together will further enable participants to ask questions and have a dialogue about current issues pertinent to the integrity of Hurricane Creek, a 31-mile stream in eastern Tuscaloosa County, flowing from Vance to the Black Warrior River at Holt. It is the last free-flowing stream in Appalachia and figured prominently in the development of the Warrior Coal Basin in the 1800’s. Those bringing food are asked to be present by 5:30 p.m. For more information, contact Jim Shaddox’s email - The event is open to members and those who have an interest in the creek’s protection.
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Our latest edition of Museum Chronicle is now available online, and the print edition will be mailed out shortly to all UA museum members.