Thursday, June 2, 2011

Atlanta INTown review

Joseph Gatins is the author of the new non-fiction biography We Were Dancing on a Volcano: Bloodlines and Fault Lines of a Star-Crossed Atlanta Family, 1849-1989, published by The Glade Press. The indexed, 330-page book, with family pictures and news clips, is a who’s who tale with truth bearing episodes of the Atlanta-New York Gatins family.
The author grew up in Paris and Atlanta and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He served in Vietnam as a U.S. Army intelligence analyst during 1969-1970, and awarded the Bronze Star for that service. He is a former Richmond Times-Dispatch reporter and special projects editor, now retired to the mountains of north Georgia. Gatins chronicles memorable family characters especially his elegant French grandmother, Marie de Villelume-Sombreuil Gatins. Her oral history reminiscence tape-recorded in 1976 and her 1988 written memoir pepper the family history with the turmoil of occupied France during World War II.
Three key family role players with the same Joseph Gatins name are all buried now in Historic Oakland Cemetery. They are Irish born, great-great grandfather Joseph F. Gatins (1827-1905), settling first in Savannah and connecting with the Central of Georgia Railroad; great-grandfather, Atlanta native Joseph Francis Gatins, Sr. (1855-1936) New York Wall Street wheeler-dealer-builder of the Georgian Terrace Hotel; and one armed grandfather, Joseph Francis Gatins, Jr. (1882-1927), known as Joe, sportsman and real estate investor, died in his Georgian Terrace Hotel apartment.
– Ann Boutwell
PS:  See also Boutwell's "look back" for June 23, 1910.  A Look Back