WILLIAM LINDSEY McDONALD and Michael McDonald Backensto. Descended from early pioneers of Florence and Lauderdale County, Alabama, the author began collecting historical information about the Muscle Shoals more than a half century ago. This research has involved personal interviews with Civil War veterans, former slaves, and descendants of both Native Americans and families of the frontier who were among the first of the European descendants to arrive in North Alabama. Over the years, William Lindsey McDonald has worn many hats. As a World War II and Korean War veteran, he is a retired Army Colonel, a retired Chief of TV A’s Budget and Cost Control Staff at the National Fertilizer Development Center, and a retired minister of the United Methodist Church. As a journalist and author, this is the most recent of a number of his books that help to tell the story of the Muscle Shoals.