Yearly Archives: 2013

Indian Trail Trees

Ever since the beginning of human existence trees have played an important role in the growing culture of man.  Primitive man used them in various ways as means of providing him not only with food, but also with shelter, protection and warmth. As man grew in intelligence, he found that trees could further be used […]


Gathering in the mistletoe

Frank Slake (right) and Ray Stratton gathered holly and mistletoe in the hills near Lerose, KY for Christmas 1907 when they worked for the K. & P. Lumber Company established there. Full caption at Owsley County Historical & Genealogy Society. Tweet Send to Kindle


Appalachian aesthetics and why I’ve been thinking about it

The following post ran on the blog of composer, pianist, and educator Nate May. It is reprinted here with permission.   This morning I made a list of a dozen books I need to read before I start having answers. I’m probably going to have to beat myself over the head with these books, and […]


‘Secrets of the Blue Ridge’ about to release 2nd volume in series

James has learned from experience that everyone has a piece of the story and that, like the smallest of clues in a treasure hunt, each of those story pieces has value. Across four decades, he has researched and gathered the stories of the people and communities of the nearby Blue Ridge Mountains: stories of good times and difficult times, oft’ told tales of fun and adventure, and stories shared in hushed tones too personal to be repeated.

James is often asked where he finds these stories.

“Oh,” he replies, “living rooms, kitchens, front porches, back porches or leaning against a shelf at the neighborhood store; in hospital rooms, at family reunions, birthday get-togethers, funerals, country auc­tions, apple butter boilin’s, com­munity potlucks, hymn-sings, church homecomings, or some­times just riding together to one of these events. The place has never seemed to matter.

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