When you think of museums, the Montgomery museum of Fine Arts may come to mind, but for lots of people another Montgomery museum comes to mind. It's the Hank Williams museum in Montgomery ...6-thousand square feet that's all Hank...all the time.
The president of the Hank Williams museum is Cecil Jackson. He started collecting Hank Williams memorabilia when he was a youngster. Later he searched through yard sales and flea markets buying anything that had Hank's name on it.
His museum is a living lesson on how to work hard, play hard, die young - and become a country music legend in four years. "we feel we have the most complete museum in the world," Jackson said. Inside the museum you'll find the baby blue, 1952 Cadillac convertible. "It's the only one in the world that Hank Williams owned and died in," said Jackson .
You'll also see what he wore - including the outfit from the night he died at age 29. And then there are the instruments he played...a spinet piano and guitars. And you can't miss hundreds of albums he recorded. Jackson says Hank recorded 220 songs. He wrote about half of them.
On one wall of the museum, you'll see a carefully preserved copy of the original lyrics from one of Hank's hits. It's written on notebook paper and signed by the author. In call there are hundreds of items to see...many in hand-made cherry wood and oak display cases.
Fans come from as far away as Japan and Germany . In fact, Jackson says many of the foreign visitors can "give him a tour of his own museum. So what makes Hank Williams songs so appealing? Cecil has a simple answer, "Get you a CD that's got 24 songs on it...put it in your CD player and the first song that comes on is going to be about you. George Jones on one of the interviews that he did said 'hell, he was writing about me' and he was writing about you...all of the songs fit us."
So, if you've got a hankering for some Hank Williams...head to the museum - it's on commerce right across from the front entrance of the civic center.