Museum the New Llano Colony



Covington "Covami" Hall

Birth: He was born in 1871 in Woodville, Mississippi.  

Description: He was a native of Louisiana -- his family had a home in Terrebonne Parish named "Rural Retreat" -- and so was "posted on the past conditions and characteristics of the various elements of this state and quite an interesting conversationialist on many different subjects of the Southland."  

Pre-Colony History: He was widely known under his pen name "Covami" (a combination of his own name and his pet name for his uncle, Dr. A.V. Woods, which was "Uncle Ami". Born to wealth in a Southern aristocracy where he was educated to be a "respectable citizen", he chose rather to be a companion of "the Toilers".

He arrived in the colony in connection with the O'Hare family and the Commonwealth College.  

Family Information:

Covington Hall  

Job in Colony: He was a professor in the Commonwealth College and a poet whose works were often published in the Llano Colonist.

In 1930 he wrote an article for the Vernon Parish Democrat titled "The Chain System". An excerpt: "Chain stores and chain farms are but the final links in the process of expropriation warned against by Karl Marx three generations ago, and summed up in the sentence: 'Capitalist property expropriates private property into itself.'" In 1931 he was the editor of the "Industrial Democrat".  

Home in Colony:  

Other Info: Though he never stayed for more than one year at any one time, he did return to the colony from time to time and stay for short periods. In 1930 he was visiting in the colony, though it was reported he had lived here at some time prior to that.

In 1932 he spoke at the Sunday evening forum, the subject being that Liberty under Present-day Conditions, is a Meaningless Term.  

Post-Colony History: He went to Arkansas in 1924 with the Commonwealth College and continued to teach there.

For more than forty years he was a writer, speaker and publicity agent for workers and farmers in their struggle for economic freedom. He fought with them in Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Oregon, North Dakota, South Dakota, Florida and all over Dixie.

In 1948 he was quoted "I was born in the midst of tumults and riots and, if I live a few years or months longer, I expect to die in the midst of tumults and riots".  

Death: He died in 1952 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  

Sources: Vernon Parish Democrat: March 13, 1930, May 15, 1930; "Llano Colonist": March 8, 1930, June 13, 1931 (Story of Llano), September 5, 1931, November 21, 1931, March 19, 1932, April 2, 1932, March 25, 1933, February 13, 1932; "Radical Education in the Rural South; Commonwealth College 1922-1940" by William H. Cobb; "Battle Hymns of Toil" by Covington Hall; Obituary: Andrew Van Hall (brother)  

Photos: Left -- Covington Hall in Arkansas

Center: "To Llano" by Covington Hall

Right: Clippings from Hall's book, "Rhymes of a Rebel" illustrated by Ivy Young.


 

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