ATLANTA (AP) — Thousands of petitioners are hoping to stop the demolition of a downtown Atlanta building where the first country hit song is believed to have been recorded.
Fiddlin' John Carson likely recorded "Little Log Cabin in the Lane" in the building in 1923, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported .
Last month, a Myrtle Beach-based developer planning to build a 21-story Margaritaville-themed hotel, timeshare rental and restaurant obtained a permit to tear the building down.
The lot where the building now stands would be used for dumpsters and grease traps next to the hotel's first-floor restaurant, according to design plans reviewed by the newspaper.
"All the grease off those 'Cheeseburgers in Paradise' would end up where this building now stands," said Atlanta resident and architect Kyle Kessler, who started the petition to save the building. "I'm not a songwriter, but that would be saddest blues or country song you could possibly write."
So far, more than 8,000 people have signed the online petition.
Laurie Gorman, a publicist for Buffett, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that she had no comment.
The Strand Capital Group of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, is managing the development, the Atlanta newspaper reported. J. Patrick Lowe, a senior partner with the firm, told the newspaper in May that he didn't think the Atlanta project could move forward without the piece of land. Strand was the developer of Margaritaville of San Antonio on the city's popular River Walk, its website shows.
In Atlanta, Kessler set up a portable, hand-cranked 1923 Victrola Talking Machine in front of the building last week and played the records that were recorded inside nearly a century ago.
Now, Kessler says he may stand between the building and the demolition crew if that helps to stop the building's destruction.
On Tuesday afternoon, workers were throwing items from inside the building into a large dumpster in the parking lot across the street from Centennial Olympic Park.
Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, http://www.ajc.com