While working on a self-chosen high school project recreating women’s dress in America she met her future husband who later surprised her with a stack of related books from the LaGrange College Library. They started their life together in the year of the Bicentennial, 1976.
Debbie now has 32 years’ experience as a horse trainer and riding instructor and 47 years as a Living History Volunteer for various State and National Historic Sites. Her area of interest is in the women’s life in Georgia and Alabama from 1730 to 1825 and using that knowledge in demonstrations including cooking, spinning, and natural dyeing. Self-employed as a seamstress she produces reproduction 18th and 19th century museum quality clothing and living history clothing. Recreations are on display in museums and in private collections throughout the southeast including the Revolutionary War Siege of Savannah on display at the Great Savannah Exposition in Savannah Georgia, a project of Communication Arts of Hollywood, California, 19th century military, women’s everyday dress, and Ball Gowns, 1840’s civilian men and women’s clothing, 1812 military uniforms for Horseshoe Bend National Historic Site; and 1825 civilian clothing representing Lafayette’s Farwell Tour.
This interest in women’s life in Georgia and Alabama between 1800 to 1825 introduced her to many wonderful writers and people including her husband, Joe Thompson, and their daughter, Jennifer Thompson, who led her through Lafayette’s travels along The Federal Road and to the enthusiastic Lafayette Alliance of LaGrange.