Tag Archives: appalachian history

The number of railroad accidents made the need for a hospital strongly felt

“The Western Maryland Hospital, the first institution of its kind in Allegany County, was erected on Baltimore Avenue to minister to the suffering. The building stands there as a monument to the public-spirited women who made the hospital possible. “In 1888, thirty five years ago, a group of Cumberland women, realizing their duty to fellow […]

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Divining for water

Water witching (rhabdomancy) is very common in West Virginia. According to a study done about fifty years ago, at that time there were twenty-five thousand practicing water witches in this country. The actual practice of divining with a forked stick, as we know it, began in the late fifteenth or early sixteenth century in Germany. […]

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Old Order Amish

When you’re in Oakland or Grantsville, MD, you’re in Old Order Amish territory. If you’re not Amish yourself, you may be wondering just how that group got its name. You’d have to go back to the Zurich, Switzerland of the 1690s and make the acquaintance of one Jakob Amman. Amman’s roots were in the Anabaptists, […]

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Cold Winter Shadow

When a cold winter shadow I cast on the ground And frost from the foothills is creeping all around I now and then glance down the road towards the town In a kind of a hope you’ll be coming on down It must have been November when I left you to the train I watched […]

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Criminal Syndicalism comes to Harlan, KY

In November 1931, as chairman of the National Committee for the Defense of Political Prisoners, well known author Theodore Dreiser organized a special committee to infiltrate Kentucky’s Harlan coal mines to investigate allegations of crimes and abuses against striking miners. The self-appointed group of left-leaning writers (including Theodore Dreiser, Lewis Mumford, John Dos Passos, and […]

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