Bullard, Schrieber honored for preservation efforts

Published 10:01 pm Thursday, March 19, 2009

Two Troy women have been recognized for their outstanding endeavors and achievements by the United Daughters of the Confederacy,

Karen Bullard and Dot Schrieber were presented the Judah P. Benjamin Certificate of Award at the annual meeting of the General Henry D. Clayton District, Alabama Division, United Daughters of the Confederacy, hosted by Pike County Chapter No. 2657.

Donna Clark, district director, said the objectives of the United Daughters of the Confederacy are historical, educational, benevolent, memorial and patriotic.

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“In keeping with these objectives, this award is given in memory of the contributions of the great Confederate statesman, Judah P. Benjamin and to honor these individuals for their outstanding endeavors and achievements, not necessarily related to the Confederacy.”

Bullard is a member of the Elizabeth Bashinsky Chapter UDC and assistant director of the Troy Public Library. Her interest in history and her deep appreciation of those who came before have been her motivation to record and preserve the historic records of Pike County.

“My mother tried to get me interested in genealogy but, for a long time, I had no interest,” Bullard said. “It was not until I was a grown woman that I became interested.

Bullard said her mother, Annette Connor, took her to Beulah Cemetery in Troy.

“She stood there with tears in her eyes and said, ‘Baby, I wanted to show the cemetery to you the way I remember it.’ She remembered Beulah Cemetery as clean and pristine and it was so overgrown that you couldn’t see the graves, marked or mounded.”

Bullard has complied several publications including all of the cemeteries where Confederate veterans are buried and three containing obituaries. She has also published a listing of all Pike County World War I veterans and a cemetery survey.

Bullard has been involved in the cleanup and preservation efforts at Beulah Cemetery and Beulah Primitive Baptist Church, where her great-grandfather was the sexton.

“I’m proud to be a part of the preservation of that one,” she said.

Bullard and Schrieber have collaborated on several publications and bulletins.

“Karen is my mentor,” Schrieber said. “It’s just amazing what she knows and how willing she is to share her knowledge with others. We’ve done bulletins for the Pike County Historical Society and she has helped me research Pike County records, advised me and done proof reading. If it weren’t for Karen, I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish anything.”

Schrieber worked at the Pike County Farmers Co-op for 18 years. The co-op was closed on Wednesdays so she spent much those days in the basement of the courthouse.

“I started first researching the Williamson family tree but, as I went through the books, page by page, I got stuck,” she said.

Schrieber published the first Pike County land records detailing who first bought the land and where it is located.

“I published a book on the first colored marriages and on World War I veterans and, doing the research, I lost myself in the basement of the Pike County Courthouse,” she said. “I was fascinated by the old records and how they were kept. Before official records of births and deaths were kept, doctors and nurses would write the information in books or even on loose sheets of paper. I decided those records needed to be recorded in book form.”

Clark said Bullard and Schrieber were to be congratulated for their love of country.