Other Notable Deaths


October 15, 2007


Wrote on Southern history

Margaret Anne Barnes, award-winning author of books examining landmark events in Southern history, died Thursday at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta after a long battle with emphysema, said her son, David Dukes.

Ms. Barnes wrote the 1976 book Murder in Coweta County, which detailed the first time in Georgia history that testimony from two black field hands helped convict a prominent land baron of the murder of a sharecropper.

The book, which won the Mystery Writers of America's Edgar Allan Poe Award, was made into a 1983 television movie starring Johnny Cash and Andy Griffith.

WERNER VON TRAPP, 91 Member of musical family

Werner von Trapp, a member of the musical family made famous by the 1965 movie The Sound of Music, died Thursday at his home in Waitsfield, Vt., his family said. The cause of death was not announced.

The Sound of Music was based loosely on a 1949 book by his stepmother, Maria von Trapp, who died in 1987. It tells the story of an Austrian woman who marries a widower with seven children and teaches them music.

Born in Zell am See, Austria, Mr. von Trapp was the fourth child and second son of Capt. Georg von Trapp and his first wife, Agathe Whitehead. In the movie, Werner von Trapp was depicted by the character named Kurt.

During the 1930s, Mr. von Trapp studied cello and became proficient on several other instruments. He sang tenor with his family's choir, the Trapp Family Singers, who won acclaim throughout Europe after their debut in 1935.

In 1938, Mr. von Trapp and his family fled Nazi-occupied Austria. After they arrived in New York, the family became popular with concert audiences. The family eventually settled in Vermont.

After the Trapp Family Singers retired, he helped to found a music school in Reading, Penn., called the Community School of Music.

He and his family eventually settled on a dairy farm in Waitsfield, where he farmed until 1979. He spent the years after his retirement traveling and weaving, spinning, and crocheting.

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