On the banks of the bayou in Jefferson, Texas, Fred McKenzie continues researching the history of the area he loves--his hometown. It's a journey of research and dedication that began in the 1930s with Fred and his camera. He travelled in and around his hometown of Avinger, Texas to show ordinary, everyday life. "I tried to show how it really was," said McKenzie. He captured the farming and logging business of the time, and he also profiled segregation. He's researched Jefferson's famed Diamond Bessie character and other tidbits of Jeffersonian life.
His work has been self-published in town books, Hickory Hill, and Avinger, Texas U.S.A. . "I tell people one way to get to be a historian, is to outlive everybody else," said 89-year old McKenzie. The public can buy the books at his bookstore, Books on the Bayou. The small shop is a used bookstore that features a wide array of books, from biographies to fiction.
When Fred isn't at the bookstore or scouting out new bits of history, he's riding his bicycle or flying his plane. He is a member of the United Flying Octogenarians, called U.F.O.s for short, and he has a plane and airstrip near his home on the Lake O' the Pines.
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