Tag Archives: appalachian mountains history

White livered widders

People with an abnormally strong sex drive were said to suffer from white liver. The folk medicine record contains scant information on this folk illness, because openly talking about sex was taboo in the past. The earliest and most complete description of white liver comes from Vance Randolph’s study of folk culture in the Ozarks: […]

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Apple butter thick enough to slice

“Cider for apple butter must be perfectly new from the press, and the sweeter and mellower the apples are of which it is made, the better will the apple butter be. Boil the cider till reduced to one half its original quantity, and skim it well. “Do not use for this purpose an iron kettle, […]

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Which of them REALLY invented ‘Dr Pepper’?

The town boomed when the railroad came through in 1856, and so in 1872 a former Confederate surgeon named Dr. Charles T. Pepper started a soon-to-be-thriving business dispensing patent medicines in a brick pharmacy in Rural Retreat, VA. He also spent time mixing mountain herbs, roots and seltzer into a fizzy brew.   One local […]

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Light up a Spud!

The pack was expensive at 20 cents, but you got the first menthol-infused cigarette, ancestor to “Kool,” “Salem” and others. Why was it called “Spuds?” Lloyd “Spud” Hughes of Mingo Junction, OH gets the credit for introducing Americans to menthol cool smoking. Hughes wasn’t long out of high school and working as a cashier in […]

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The (accidental) discovery of a lifetime

Leo Lambert (1895-1955), though trained as a chemist, was an avid cave enthusiast. He was the first person to explore the Tennessee Cave on Mount Aetna (now known as Raccoon Mountain Caverns), and at one time managed the Nickajack Caverns in Marion County, TN. He moved to Chattanooga because his fiancée Ruby Eugenia Losey moved […]

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