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‘Blind Willie’ McTell writes ‘Statesboro Blues’

Our place in Statesboro’s rich architectural tradition.

One of Statesboro’s most famous sons, "Blind Willie" McTell helped make Statesboro and Georgia famous by writing the song that the Alman Brothers Band made popular, "Statesboro Blues." It is said the song was written in the Statesboro Inn’s Hattie Holloway Cottage.

McTell was a man of pride. Blind from birth, he refused to wear dark glasses and never allowed his blindness to prevent him from doing what he wanted to do. He was set apart from other blues musicians by his mastery of the 12-string guitar. At the turn of the 20th century, McTell's parents came to Statesboro to find work. He would play on the streets for locals and visitors to the area.

McTell continued to develop his musical talents through much education and musical training in New York City, Michigan, North Carolina, and Macon, Georgia. After suffering a stroke in August of 1959, he died in a hospital in Milledgeville, Georgia. In 1990, he was posthumously inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.

Stroll the “Blind Willie” McTell Trail on our list of local attractions.