Hannibal News

'Huck Finn Blues' named Hannibal's official song

By Herald-Whig
Posted: Feb. 6, 2018 10:15 pm

HANNIBAL, Mo. -- The city of Hannibal has an official song.

The Hannibal City Council on Tuesday approved naming "Huck Finn Blues," recorded by country singer Brad Paisley, as the city's official song. The request was made by the Bicentennial Steering Committee, and the idea for using "Huck Finn Blues" came from resident Joel Booth.

"There are so many mentions of Hannibal in it, such as Bear Creek," Booth said. "The song is a representation of who we are, and as you listen to it, you have a sense of pride about where we live."

The song was written by Grammy winner Carl Jackson and southern Illinois teachers Danny Wilson and Emily Hayes.

"Huck Finn Blues" appears on the CD "Mark Twain: Words and Music," which celebrated Twain's 175th birthday in 2010. The idea for the project came from Cindy Lovell, former Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum executive director and current Bicentennial Steering Committee event director.

Also on the CD are spoken-word narratives by actor Clint Eastwood as Mark Twain, singer Jimmy Buffett as Huckleberry Finn and "A Prairie Home Companion" host Garrison Keillor as the main narrator. Interspersed between spoken-word tracks are songs such as "Huck Finn Blues" sung by celebrities.

Tourism Director Gail Bryant said, "This song captures the spirit of historic Hannibal and two of its most famous characters, Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn. We believe naming this as our town's official song in time for our bicentennial will be an important component in raising our visibility, acknowledging our history and distinguishing Hannibal's legacy."

Also Tuesday, the council introduced an ordinance clarifying the Jan. 16 annexation of property between 8878 and 8860 Jimmy O'Donnell Road, which will be a 100-home, 50-acre subdivision called Minnow Creek. Ball Investment Group owns the property.

"(The previous ordinance) characterized it as located at 8878 and 8860 Jimmy O'Donnell Road. In fact, the property is located between 8878 and 8860 Jimmy O'Donnell Road," Hannibal Department of Public Works management assistant Edie Price explained. "This does not change the annexation status of the Ball property. However, this clerical error poses confusion and potential for error."

The new ordinance clarifies that only the Ball Investment Group property -- which doesn't have an address because nothing is there, Price said -- was annexed, not 8878 and 8860 Jimmy O'Donnell Road. Councilmen gave the ordinance, which changes "at" to "between," a first reading.

Other action:

º The council authorized the closing of 17 Hannibal businesses that were more than six months overdue in acquiring a current business license.

º A public hearing to rezone 10 acres north of Mayapple Lane from F-Industrial to A-1 and A-2 Family has been set for 4 p.m. Feb. 15 during the Planning and Zoning Commission meeting and 6:45 p.m. March 6 before the City Council meeting.

º The council passed a resolution stating it has the financial resources and commitment to renovate and maintain Huckleberry Pond if a Missouri Land and Water Conservation grant is awarded so that the pond can be repaired and enhanced.

º The council passed ordinances approving and accepting the dedication of Tennyson Road into the city, abandoning Goodhart Drive, and approving a simultaneous minor subdivision plat of Tennyson commercial subdivision so that resident B. Rochelle Tennyson can create a large lot with road access.

º The council passed an ordinance approving and accepting the preliminary plat of Minnow Creek subdivision.