Alex Haley lived in Henning, Tennessee with his grandparents from 1921-1929. Here is where young Alex heard many oral accounts of his family history from his grandmother, Cynthia, and Aunts Liz, Viney, Till and Cousin Georgia. On summer evenings their stories of ancestors, Kunta Kinte, who was sold into slavery at age 16 from West Africa, and “Chicken George”, who led the family from North Carolina to Tennessee, inspired Haley to write the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Roots. It is from this site that American Heritage Trees worked with Haley’s cousin, Beverly Johnson, to collect seeds and cuttings from selected pecan and crape myrtle trees.
To learn more about Alex Haley, visit the Alex Haley Museum and Interpretive Center.