FAIRHOPE — Ann Bedsole says her daddy often said, if something needs to be done, get up and go do it. That's why at age 48, after raising three children she became the first Republican woman to …
FAIRHOPE — Ann Bedsole says her daddy often said, if something needs to be done, get up and go do it. That's why at age 48, after raising three children she became the first Republican woman to serve in the Alabama House of Representatives.
Now, at age 93, Bedsole looked back at her times not just in politics but as a child growing up in Alabama and put her memories on paper in "Leave Your Footprint."
Bedsole said she wrote the memoir mainly as a record for her children after spending three months in isolation on the family's Monroe County farm during the spread of Covid-19.
"I felt like I should have told my children a lot more about my childhood. So I just started writing to keep from going crazy, really," she said with a chuckle.
Bedsole said she vividly remembers life in the 1930s. The world was so different in so many ways. It was important, she said, for her children to know those differences.
"I felt like my children needed to know where they came from," she said.
The book does touch on her time in the Alabama Legislature and her taking on the "Old Boys" in Montgomery, the term she used for the legislators she found there in the 1970s. Bedsole added that she wished more women would enter politics in Alabama, and, she said, they should start earlier and "be proud of all Alabama has to offer."
Since then, Bedsole's non-profit work has led to the creation and growth of important institutions, including the Alabama School of Math and Science and the Sybil Smith Village. She was named First Lady of Mobile in 1972, Mobilian of the Year in 1993, and Philanthropist of the Year in 1998.
In 2002, she was inducted into the Alabama Academy of Honor, which recognizes living persons for their achievements and contributions to the state.
Bedsole will speak in Fairhope on Thursday, Feb. 9.