Tag Archives: appalachia

Hobo Nickels

Hobo nickels are a form of American craft distinctive to the Depression era, when buffalo nickels and hobos were plentiful.

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Lying on quilts, on the grass, in a summer evening

Listen to Eleanor Steber sing intro to ‘Knoxville:Summer of 1915′ She was the most celebrated American soprano of the 1940s and 1950s. She went on from there to become head of the voice department at the Cleveland Institute of Music from 1963 to 1972, to teach at the Juilliard School of Music in New York, […]

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A German family settles in Walhalla

The Keil Farm is significant as an example of the evolution of an antebellum farm house from the mid-nineteenth to the early twentieth century, and also symbolizes the role that a German immigrant family played in the settlement and development of Walhalla and Oconee County in SC. John Henry Keil, Sr. (1817-1900), was born Johann […]

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Cyrus McCormick did not invent the mechanical reaper

It has become common knowledge that Cyrus H. McCormick invented and manufactured the mechanical reaper, but it was actually his father’s genius as a simple inventor that led to the family’s riches and renown. According to research compiled by Norbert Lyons, Cyrus’ mother Polly encouraged her husband Robert to give Cyrus his inventions as a […]

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Musty corn and the dread scourge pellagra

‘Musty’ is one of those old-fashioned words you don’t hear used much anymore. You might on occasion refer to a damp basement that way, and that’s about it. But in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century the word struck fear in the hearts of mountain folk. One of the great comforts of jokes is […]

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