The Vagabond – Alpin Liddell Moragne

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By Danny Crownover

Alpin Liddell Moragne was born on June 21, 1896 and married Anne Mae Humbrecht on March 3, 1920 in Nashville, Tennessee.

He died on April 7, 1966 in Nashville and is buried at Mt. Olive Cemetery.

Alpin worked as an advertising service manager for Frosty Morn Packing Company and was the grandson of John S. Moragne, one of the founders of Gadsden.

Born in Attalla and raised in Gadsden, Alpin Liddell Moragne was, to quote a local newspaper at the time, “probably the only advertising manager in the world who could draw and originate all of his own ads, as well as the ads of his customers.

On top of that, being able to make his own signs, posters, silk process work, letter a dealer’s truck, complete an 8×12-foot water color of a former president’s home (with the president himself in an upper cone), write articles about his dealers for magazines and sell an opening stock for a store.”

Old timers often talked about Alpin as a small knee pants boy running Gadsden and Attalla painting store signs.

They were not surprised that he made such a success, for he was an indefatigable worker with many talents.

Whether Alpin was an artist or an advertising man first would be hard to determine. He practiced his art in every state in the nation and was calling on food merchants for 30 years, being employed by one of Tennessee’s largest wholesale stores in Nashville.

Alpin was a cartoonist for both the Nashville Shriner and The Independent, two news magazines of that city.

He illustrated books for writers, wrote for 37 leading trade magazines, and did oil paintings. His ideas of advertising were said to be inexhaustible.

Alpin had the reputation of being the fastest watercolor artist in the land and was known for his “lightning” glass artwork. He often draws crowds large enough to block sidewalks in just a few minutes of painting, and on many occasions, police had to be called in to control the crowds.

Contact The Vagabond at dkcrown@bellsouth.net.

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