Monthly Archives: April 2007

FDR tiptoes around the lynching issue

The movement to put anti-lynching legislation in place gained new momentum with the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932. The president’s wife Eleanor had been a long-time opponent of lynching. During that year, lynchings had decreased to a new low of ten incidents and during the entire decade “only” 88 blacks were lynched. Appalachia, […]

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Now I’ve got my Tailypo!

Back in the hollers lived an old woodsman in a one-room cabin with his three dogs. After a day of hunting, the old man finds only a small rabbit to feed himself and his three dogs. Still hungry, the old woodsman begins to doze off. Just as he is about to fall asleep, the awfulest […]

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The place I was raised up

“[The farm was] wedged in . . . there’s a branch . . . a big branch come down, and it’s clean up on both sides of the hollow. That was just a holler, see. And a hillside. It run up on each side of the hill. I believe it was about a hundred and […]

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Six men to a room

“Men in room at Mrs. Jones’s boardinghouse. Six men live in this room. Three beds, pay eight to ten dollars a week rent. Most of them have families they left behind in Bluefield, West Virginia; Bristol, Tennessee; or High Point, North Carolina. They are carpenters, carpenters’ assistants, riggers and laborers. They make sixty cents to […]

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The poor third class have fallen behind

FDR’s government found itself in the business of real estate development during the early New Deal years. In 1933 Eleanor Roosevelt came to Scotts Run, WV to assess what she might do to improve living conditions of out-of-work miners and enable them to become self-sufficient. Two months later, The Resettlement Administration, Division of Subsistence Homesteads […]

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