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26 posts tagged with appalachia.
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The local economy runs on black-market soda

In Appalachia the country is beautiful and the society is broken.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jan 11, 2014 - 109 comments

Coal Camps USA.

Coalfields of the Appalachian Mountains. An encyclopedia of coal towns.
posted by xowie on Oct 7, 2013 - 17 comments

Quiet at Thunder Ridge

Horse (particularly harness) racing is often accused of being a dying sport, and if that's the case then Bill Finley attended a funeral at Thunder Ridge Raceway in (near?) Prestonsburg, Kentucky. Even if horse racing isn't your bag, though, a worthwhile read for those interested in a night in the life of an entertainment venue on the border of Johnson & Floyd Counties (combined population ~70k). It's not the middle of nowhere, but it's not where you'd expect to find a gambling venue either.
posted by EJXD2 on Jun 11, 2013 - 6 comments

Water Wars

Georgia Senate passes resolution to move state line, claim Tennessee River water. A TPM reader provides interesting background.
posted by maggieb on Mar 25, 2013 - 47 comments

Grape of wrath

What’s eating Appalachia? 'Democrats in the region seem to hate their president. Keith Judd, a convict serving a 17-year sentence for extortion in a Texan jail' 'won 58% of the vote in Hardy County to Barack Obama’s 42%. Mr Judd’s victory was not a freak result: Democrats in a further nine counties in West Virginia judged a resident of the Federal Correctional Institution in Texarkana a better standard-bearer for their party than the current occupant of the White House.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword on Jul 12, 2012 - 76 comments

"A two-piece band called Gillian Welch" releases its first new album since 2003

Singer-songwriter Gillian Welch has released her first new album in eight years, The Harrow and the Harvest. Welch, who writes, plays, and tours with her partner David Rawlings, combines multiple influences that extend well beyond the borders of Appalachian folk, bluegrass, and Americana, to what Alec Wilkinson has called "at once innovative and obliquely reminiscent of past rural forms" in his 2004 New Yorker profile. [more inside]
posted by liketitanic on Jun 30, 2011 - 41 comments

Hillbilly idols

Winter's Bone director Debra Granik offers her 45+ minute documentary, Hillbilly Up!, as a free exclusive iTunes download. The film features several of the local musicians and actors from the film discussing Ozarks culture and history.
posted by dobbs on Jan 3, 2011 - 17 comments

Portraits from the hollers

Shelby Lee Adams has spent decades photographing the holler families of rural Kentucky and the mountain folk of Appalachia. More B&W images from the Edelman gallery. Interview With An Artist: Shelby Lee Adams (alternate B&W PDF version); Essays by Adams: All of Us and The Napier's Living Room, 1989; Interview with 92-year old Scotty Stidham.
posted by madamjujujive on Jan 18, 2010 - 15 comments

Limberjack and Limberjill

Jig Dolls as a percussion instrument, here played by Jean Ritchie [previously] and The Beers Family. There are modern exponents though - Limberjacking is NOT just for folkies.
posted by tellurian on Nov 2, 2009 - 4 comments

Mind Body Spirit Place

Appalachia Ohio is home to an eclectic mix of individuals united by a common sense of place. Through photography, video, audio, text and interactive graphics, Soul of Athens reveals the spirit of this unique community. Produced by students at Ohio University's School of Visual Communication. (2008, 2007)
posted by netbros on Oct 5, 2009 - 9 comments

Daddy Moonshine

Do you know how to make a frog drunk? I bet you don't. But I do. I fired my pot up one morning and got it going real good. It had just started running high shots. That is what you call it when it first starts to come out. For so many jugs, then it turns to backins. Anyway here come hopping up to the still a damn big frog. I thought to myself ol' boy I'll make you drunk as hell.
Legendary Appalachian moonshiner Marvin "Popcorn" Sutton was arrested by the ATF in March 2008 [PDF]. At his arrest, agents found guns, three 1000-gallon stills, hundreds of gallons of sour mash, and over 800 gallons of white lightning. This week at 61 years old, and faced with 18 months in prison, he committed suicide.
posted by Who_Am_I on Mar 19, 2009 - 84 comments

A day at the fair

You may remember Stan Brock from as the British anaconda wrangler from Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom (top right video). These days he runs Remote Area Medical, a volunteer airborne relief corps that brings medical, dental, and educational assistance to remote areas of the world. Every year, they go to remote Appalachian Virginia, a one day drive from Washington DC, for a 3 day event at the fairgrounds.
posted by oneirodynia on Nov 9, 2008 - 10 comments

A brilliant talent gone too soon. Breece D'J Pancake.

Transcripts of a troubled mind tells the life and times of Breece D'J Pancake, a brilliant young writer from South Charleston, West Virginia. In a raw, stripped down style, much of his work focused on the people and the language of the Appalachia He committed suicide at the age of 29 and left behind a small, but powerful collection of stories
posted by scarello on Nov 7, 2008 - 22 comments

Where Musicians Come to Play

Larry Groce has been producing Mountain Stage in West Virginia for 25 years. This weekly radio and public television program has been broadcasting the best mountain music in Appalachia, usually from the WV Cultural Center. This month NPR began distributing the show nationally in the U.S. Also, last year Mountain Stage began archiving podcasts of the programs ... many, many hours of wonderful mountain music. [more inside]
posted by netbros on Jul 19, 2008 - 16 comments

Serpent Handling Practice and History

The Ediwina Church of God in Jesus Christ Name. Pastor Jimmy Morrow's spelling is often non-standard and this isn't the world's best designed web page. But it's remarkable for what it is: an insider account of the history and practice of a serpent-handling sect by a current practitioner. [more inside]
posted by Pater Aletheias on May 19, 2008 - 65 comments

Stranger with a Camera

What happens when a US President declares war on a concept? In 1964, Canadian photojournalist Hugh O'Connor traveled to eastern Kentucky to document the battlefields of Lyndon Johnson's war on poverty and was shot for trespassing. The incident is the subject of a wonderful documentary, Stranger with a Camera by filmmaker Elizabeth Barrett, produced by Appalshop, a non-profit organization in Whitesburg, Kentucky, that works with local artists to promote self-representation in media and the expediency of culture to counteract a stagnating local economy. Makes you think twice about nostalgic representations of poor Appalachian coal miners plucking their banjo strings in the hollers, doesn't it?
posted by billtron on Apr 15, 2008 - 14 comments

Jean Ritchie, "Mother of Folk Music"

Jean Ritchie, Mother of folk music. Abigail and Balis Ritchie of Viper, Perry County, Kentucky had 14 children, and Jean was the youngest... [more inside]
posted by ethel on Mar 2, 2008 - 11 comments

Protecting a Mountain Heritage

"It's like having a gun held on you with the hammer back and not knowing when the man's gonna pull the trigger," is the dramatic introduction to Appalachian Voices' coverage on mountaintop removal. The on-line journal is an environmental advocate for the Appalachian mountains, covering topics from air pollution to forest restoration, but also subjects like box turtles, coyotes, poison ivy and timber thieves. They also have a blog.
posted by Atreides on Jan 20, 2008 - 8 comments

The great Doc Watson.

Doc Watson: his warm and unprepossessing voice and rolling guitar stylings (both flatpicking and fingerpicking) are treasures of American music. The following video clips will be a treat for any Watson fan, but especially for guitar players: they feature closeup shots of Doc's left hand fretwork as well as insets of his right hand picking. So, without further ado: Deep River Blues, Blue Railroad Train, Black Mountain Rag and Bluebell. [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite on Jan 20, 2008 - 21 comments

Mountaintop Removal Mining

Appalachian Apocalypse. Mountaintop removal mining (previously) has a devastating effect on the environment and local populations. The Bush administration wants to loosen regulations and expand the practice. [Via Wired Science.]
posted by homunculus on Aug 25, 2007 - 43 comments

Hatfields and the McCoys

As legends go, the first recorded instance of violence in the feud occurred after an 1873 dispute about the ownership of a hog: Floyd Hatfield had it and Randolph McCoy said it was his. The rest is Appalachian history. But it turns out that history may have had a helping hand in something called Von Hippel-Lindau disease. It weren't the moonshine, Pa. It was the DNA that did it.
posted by frogan on Apr 5, 2007 - 17 comments

Appalachian Tales

The Digital Library of Appalachia presents an online collection of music files, images, literature, and scanned documents supplied by twelve regional college libraries.
posted by Miko on Jun 22, 2006 - 17 comments

Rural Appalachia still needs a

Backyard Third World

John F. Kennedy saw it and pronounced it a shame on our nation. Lyndon B. Johnson tried to change it. The "compassionate conservatives" have exacerbated it. I wanted to share it with you. Isn't it time for real change? Hasn't the exploitation of this place and these people gone on long enough?
posted by nofundy on Jul 26, 2004 - 34 comments

Blue Ridge Music Trails

Blue Ridge Music Trails. An invaluable resource for fans of old-time country, bluegrass, gospel and folk music in the southern Appalachian Mountains. Includes places and events like the Friday night Flatfoot Jamboree at the Floyd Country Store and the Saturday-night show at the Carter Family Fold .
posted by gottabefunky on Jan 21, 2004 - 9 comments

Appalshop

The Appalshop, nestled in the hills of coal-stained eastern Kentucky, was founded in 1969 as a War on Poverty project designed to train young people in Appalachia for jobs in film and television. Today, it flourishes as one of the premier cultural outposts of a proud and struggling swath of America. Its projects include documentary films, a record label, and one of the best public radio stations in the country.
posted by PrinceValium on May 8, 2003 - 5 comments

Homeland security loophole discovered in 1999:

Homeland security loophole discovered in 1999: "In the Appalachians of West Virginia, the sun was going down and I was stuck for a place to stay.   I knocked on the door of a private farm house.  Three college-age girls were in the middle of an LSD trip.  They recognized me as Art Garfunkel.  I learned that they were three of thousands (millions?) who are "invisible" - pay no taxes, avoid the census taker; they are not on America's books."
posted by subpixel on Jun 11, 2002 - 35 comments

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