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Except For You
Except for You-The Love Story of
Andrew Jackson and Rachel, is the latest painting by McWilliams. After
much research, he depicted the couple on horseback at Springfield
Plantation near Natchez, Mississippi, in 1791, at the time of their
marriage many years before he became President of the United States.
This painting and story tell only a
small portion of the very colorful and exciting life of this couple.
The painting along with the story by his wife, Kay, narrated by Bill
Ellison and the song, Except for You, written by Ben Peters and sung
by Paul Ott, available on CD, tells of the enduring love of two people
caught in a world of change and turmoil.
The story also shows that Andrew
Jackson was much involved in the history of Mississippi. He owned a
trading post on Bayou Pierre, overlooking the Mississippi River and
also had a race track there. Jackson owned hundreds of acres in
Mississippi and Jackson , the state capitol was named for him. The
couple spent some of their happiest times in their log cabin at Bayou
Pierre. This painting which is 4 X 5 feet has been unveiled in the
State Capitol at Jackson, Mississippi and in the Hermitage in
Nashville, Tennessee. Prints are also on display in Washington D.C.
Story tag included.
Large Print - 31.75 X 26 Small Print -
23 X 19
CD Available $15.00
The Sinking of the U.S.S. Cairo
The Sinking of the U.S.S.
Cairo-December 12, 1862, the first in a series by McWilliams was
painted in 1985 and hangs in the National Military Park at Vicksburg,
Mississippi. It is also featured on several billboards in Mississippi
and Louisiana. It depicts the story of the first gunboat ever sunk by
an underwater mine. Lt. Commander Selfridge, Jr. knew the Yazoo River
was "mined" but apparently thought his vessel was
invincible. The Cairo hit the underwater mine and sank in less than 15
minutes with no loss of lives. If you look closely at the left bottom
of the print you will observe a stump from which a cable leads toward
the explosion. The Cairo can be seen in various Civil War related
shows on the History Channel. Story tag included.
Large Print - 31.25 X 17.25 Small
Print - 13.25 X 7.75
Sky Parlor Hill
VICKSBURG MISSISSIPPI From Sky Parlor
Hill – 1863. This view of Vicksburg, Mississippi
shows the early days of the siege, with flowers blooming and birds
singing. The citizens visited Sky Parlor Hill daily to watch the
battle in the distance. There they discussed the folly of the Union
Army attempting to conquer Vicksburg. The Old Court House Museum is
seen in the distance where McWilliams' live-size portrait of Gen. John
C. Pemberton, the defender of Vicksburg, now hangs. The U.S.S.
Cincinnati, crippled by Confederate cannons, burns in the river. The
citizens of Vicksburg had no idea at that time the trials and
tribulations that awaited them in the weeks to come. This print has
been shown many times on the History Channel. Story tag included.
Large Print - 31.50 X 25.50 Small
Print - SOLD OUT
Jefferson Davis, with his dog, Traveler,
Jefferson Davis, with his dog,
Traveler, at Beauvoir This portrait of Confederate President Jefferson
Davis shows Davis seated in the library cottage with his constant
companion, his dog, Traveler. This is where Davis wrote The Rise and
Fall of the Confederate Government. McWilliams lived at Beauvoir
during the time he was working on the painting. He had access to
Davis' clothes, a lock of his hair, his death mask and his books
during this time. He was also allowed to use the cottage library.
Davis loved the peace and quiet at Beauvoir as he and Traveler walked
the beaches and enjoyed the shade of the great old live oak trees.
The original painting hangs in the new
Jefferson Davis Presidential Library at Beauvoir, Biloxi, Mississippi.
The dog in the painting has always been a great favorite of the
children as they tour Beauvoir. In 1974 Jerry donated a painting to
Beauvoir titled, Jefferson Davis with the Battle Flag. It is displayed
in the Presidential Library beside the Great Seal of the Confederacy.
Story tag included.
Large Print - 30.50 x 23 Small Print -
17.50 X 13
The Old Grist Mill
The Old Grist Mill - Grand Gulf
Military State Park This painting of the Grist Mill, the Water Wheel,
the Sacred Heart Catholic Church and the Dog Trot House give viewers
and visitors to the Military Park a feeling of life in earlier times.
The efforts of Bill Lum is appreciated by those who find satisfaction
in saving the past. Mr. Lum was instrumental in assembling the above
structures on this site and was also the one responsible for the
restoration of many of the historic structures in Port Gibson,
Grand Gulf State Military Park was
founded in 1958 for the purpose of preserving two Civil War Batteries,
Fort Wade and Fort Cobun, in addition to the Grand Gulf town site.
Grand Gulf, Mississippi was named by French settlers who came to the
area early in the 1700s. Grand Gulf became a very important shipping
center because it was located on the Mississippi River. Today the
Mississippi River flows only a few hundred yards from the Military
Park. There is only a limited number of these prints left as the
majority burned in a fire in Port Gibson, Mississippi. Story tag
Large Print - 30.25 x 23 Small Print -
7.75 x 5.75
The Camellias of Southern
This painting by artist Jerry
McWilliams was painted for his wife, Kay. The camellia bushes are at
least 60 to 70 years old, very large and stand in the front yard of
their home, Southern Cedars. The circa 1834 antebellum home was
originally known as the Granberry Plantation. The artist, knowing his
wife loved the flowers, would pick the camellias, still heavy with
dew, early in the morning and bring them to her. She would always
arrange them in her mother's antique cranberry rose bowl. Someone who
saw the original wanted it as a gift for a relative. The McWilliams
not eager to part with the painting finally gave in. The original now
hangs in a specially constructed niche in a home in Arizona with the
entire room decorated around the painting.
Prints will soon be available. Please
Lt. Gen. John C. Pemberton -
The Defender of Vicksburg
Pemberton, a West
Point graduate, was cited twice for gallant actions in the Mexican
War, married a Virginia belle, resigned his U.S. Army commission and
cast his lot with the Confederacy. He had great engineering talent,
was rapidly promoted and was transferred to take command of the Dept.
of Mississippi and Eastern Louisiana, embracing the stronghold of
Vicksburg, providing access to the supplies and manpower of the
Trans-Mississippi. Many are contemptuous of Pemberton's military
record, but it is a hard fact that he and his generals repeatedly
frustrated the efforts of Grant and Sherman. On May 7 President
Jefferson Davis sent Gen. Pemberton a telegram emphasizing the
importance of holding Vicksburg at all costs. General Joe Johnston
arriving in Jackson on May 13, ordered Pemberton to save his army,
abandon Vicksburg and join with him against Grant. Pemberton was in a
quandary: Should he obey President Davis, his Commander-in-Chief, or
his immediate field commander, General Joe Johnston? His torment shows
in his eyes in this painting. Pemberton left enough troops at
Vicksburg to hold the city against a Union invasion, took most of his
army and marched east trying to form a juncture with Johnston. He
collided with Grant east of the Edwards Depot, fought and lost the key
battle of the Vicksburg
Campaign, the Battle of Champion Hill,
one of the most important battles of the war. After that battle
Pemberton retired to the Vicksburg fortifications and after a 47-day
siege was forced to surrender the city. After being exchanged,
Pemberton resigned his commission as a lieutenant general and
faithfully fought the remainder of the war as a lieutenant colonel.
James West Thompson, Historian, Jackson, Mississippi.
This painting has been shown many
times on the History channel where he was called "the saddest
man in Vicksburg". The life-size painting of Pemberton hangs
in the Old Courthouse Museum in Vicksburg, Mississippi and illustrated
in the book Pemberton - A Biography by Michael B. Ballard.
Prints will soon be available in a
limited number. Please contact us.
Southern Heritage Productions, Inc.
1357 Kimbell Road
Terry, Mississippi 39170