The Last Ride: Hank Williams Tribute Road Trip


By: Lindsey Hogan “Hey, good lookin’,whatcha got cookin’, how’s about cookin’ somethin’ up with...

By: Lindsey Hogan

 

“Hey, good lookin’, whatcha got cookin’, how’s about cookin’ somethin’ up with me?” – Sound familiar? Yep, it’s a line from one of the first country music hits from way back when! Written and recorded by the famous country music singer, Hank Williams. Williams, who came to a tragic early demise, is still celebrated for the strides he made in the country music industry, being considered the first country music superstar. The movie The Last Ride tells the story of the fateful last ride of Hank Williams across the country. Like the movie, this road trip is some what of a tribute to Hank Williams and his legacy.

1. Chris’s Hotdogs

Chris's Hotdogs

Chris’s Hotdogs was the hottest late-night hangout in Alabama in the 40s, 50s and 60s. Not to mention a favorite of Hank Williams since it was open 24/7 and kept the alcohol flowing all night. Though he often got kicked out early by Uncle Chris for getting a little too wild. Today, they still serve their world famous hotdogs and really haven’t changed since Hank frequented the place.

2. Hank Williams Grave

Hank Williams Grave

Next stop, is Hank Williams Grave which is ironically larger than life, just as he was. Hank Williams grave has a beautifully carved granite horizontal grave marker with his top 10 hits carved below his name. There, also, is one of his hats that was covered in granite and made part of the grave (there used to be his shoes as well but they were stolen). Though, none of these are the reason his grave site is so easily spotted. It’s because his grave site is surrounded by vibrant green AstroTurf. So when all the other grass browns in the hot Alabama sun, Hank Williams grave site is still surrounded by lush grass.

3. The Hank Williams Museum

Hank Williams Museum

The Hank Williams Museum showcases Hank’s entire life in over 35 cases of his personal artifacts and memorabilia. The museum even houses Hank’s baby blue Cadillac which is the car he passed away in during his ‘last ride’. The only thing they don’t have is Hank’s  Childhood Home, but lucky for us it still stands- as a museum!

4. Hank Williams Boyhood Home & Museum

Hank Williams Boyhood Home

After getting a full overview of Hank William’s rise to a country superstar reverse back to the very beginning, where it all started at his Boyhood Home. His childhood house stands today as a museum and takes you back to where it all began. The place where Hank started a love affair with music that grew into the fame he later claimed from his amazing abilities.

5. Oak Hill Public Library

Hank Williams Memorial

The last stop is the Oak Hill Public Library. This may seem like an odd spot to stop but this was the end of Hank’s Last Ride and therefore is a fitting spot to end. Hank Williams was on his way to Canton, OH to play on New Years Day in 1953 though he never made it. This driver, Charles Carr, had been driving into the early hours of the day and noticed something was wrong. He pulled over in front of the Oak Hill Public Library where he discovered Hank was dead. They rushed him to the hospital where he was officially pronounced dead. There is a plaque in front of the Library in commemoration.

 

If you enjoyed these places or are just a big fan check out the movie The Last Ride and to see more Last Ride places (and a few inspired by the film and Hank’s life) check out our Last Ride Guide Page!

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guide

 

Photo Credits:

Chris’s Hotdogs-https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151726181694595&set=pb.377566609594.-2207520000.1371585491.&type=3&theater

Hank Williams Grave- http://www.artbydorisbell.net/photo_gallery.htm

The Hank Williams Museum- http://visitingmontgomery.com/meet/hankwilliams-museum

Hank Williams Boyhood Home & Museum- http://www.greenvilleadvocate.com/2013/05/08/antone-appointed-to-museum-board/

Oak Hill Library- http://www.newriverwv.com/gallery/Hank-Williams-Last-Stop/hank_williams_memorial

 

Places explored in this article:

This was originally written for Roadtrippers, a great resource for anyone interested in travel.
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