It's been a while (3 years), since I first expressed my opinions on this subject; but I see in some recent articles in the B'ham News (09/03/06) and the Leeds News (09/07/06) that the "alleged" Leeds connection to the legend of John Henry is making a return engagement. The subject of John Henry initially appeared to some wishful thinking folks in Leeds several years ago in the form of a potential movie, tourist moneymaker (Talcott, WV was making tourist $$$) and it was something that "would put the city of Leeds on the map." The current John Henry in Leeds connection is to be portrayed as a future significant historical event (All-star movie to follow). Its interesting to note that contrary to modern thought, neither history nor truth have any direct relationship to the proposed "John Henry Days" event; or at least in Leeds they don't. It appears that in Leeds you are free to create your history as you need it; forget about any truth or facts, bring on the fiction. All you need to do is officially declare a historical occasion based on some half-truths, convoluted suppositions and hearsay; provide some entertainment and games, invite some vendors and you are in business…let the tourist money roll in. The bases for any particular historical event does not have to be real, factual or actually have ever existed.
Oh well, you create your fun however you can and I suspect the city needs all the revenue it can collect from whatever sources, after all it has been extremely successful at going into mega-debt in anticipation of the "sometime" in the future Bass Pro Shop. At this rate I would expect that there would be a grand opening of "John Henry Land" before the grand opening of the BPS. If you build it, they (the suckers) will come.