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Continuing a Legacy: School project rediscovers local blues history
150211 rls SarahSchluiter CurleyJamesWeaver3

It started as a school social studies fair project - and became a journey to find a blues legend.

Or at least where one is buried.

Eleven-year-old Sarah Schluiter and her mother Stephanie, set out to find the grave of legendary blues musician Curley James Weaver.

"I did this because my local cemetery down the way, you could tell their had been a fence between the two sides," Sarah said. "There's not many tombstones and it just looks like there's nothing there."

And after multiple interviews, cold-calls, chasing down phone numbers and meeting with historians, the Schluiter's found their way to the home of David Randall Bryant, in Oxford, Ga. Although they were only given a tip to a location of a relative's house, they had no idea who they were going to meet.

"We didn't know who we were going to meet," Stephanie said, "or where we were going. And after sitting their talking to [David], he says, 'I'm Curley Weaver's grandson.'"

After their months of searching, they found a link to Weaver. And it was as close as they could get.

"We were just really shocked with that," Sarah said. "He just kept feeding us all this information."

After sitting down with Bryant, he showed the Schluiters the location of his grandfather's grave. And a journey was complete. With the firsthand information from Bryant and the location of Weaver's grave, the Schluiter's journey was over.

And Sarah was awarded with a first place recognition for her fair project, and she's going to the nationals.

"The one thing that shocked me," Stephanie said, "was that we were in Cora Mae's house ... and just to be in her house, and have David Randall be her son, was quite an experience."

David Randall Bryant, the grandson of the "Georgia Guitar Wizard," Curley James Weaver, is a musician himself. Following in his mother, Cora Mae Bryant's footsteps, David is planning to release an album of his own, but the logistics and recording is still in process.

The News reporter Randy Schafer sat down with David Randall Bryant to talk about his family's legacy, the death and grave location of his grandfather, his mother's musical career and a chance to hear the musician plays his relatives' music.