Tag Archives: history of appalachia

August 8 is Emancipation Day. But not everywhere.

On January 1, 1863, the Emancipation Proclamation declared that all slaves held in locations in conflict with the United States were henceforth free. Black communities in Virginia, Georgia and North Carolina have observed Emancipation Day on that day ever since. Not so elsewhere in Appalachia. When Union soldiers took control of an area, they would, […]

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Sody Sallyratus

A long time ago there was an old woman and an old man and a little girl and a little boy and their pet squirrel sitting up on the fireplace. One day the old woman wanted to bake some biscuits but she needed some sody. So she sent the little boy to the store to […]

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From then on my cousin and this pig understood each other

One of our cousins had a fight once with a fertilizer spreader, with an inanimate machine. He was pouring fertilizer into cotton rows with this spreader, a brand new expensive labor saving device, and he could not get it to spread the proper amount. It dropped too much, it dropped too little. He worked for […]

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Jean Thomas: Kentucky’s Traipsin’ Woman

She had hosted Susan Steele Sampson, wife of Kentucky’s governor, the previous year at her first American Folk Song Festival, held at the Traipsin’ Woman Cabin. Now, in August 1931, Jean Thomas found herself invited to the Governor’s mansion in Frankfort to discuss the creation of an American Folk Song Society and an annual festival […]

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The US Army used DDT to de-louse soldiers

Here is a little insect that with all his faults, and they are many, possesses certain virtues. He has solved the problem of race suicide, for he multiplies with astounding rapidity. He adapts himself easily, not to say gracefully, to uncomfortable, even unsanitary surroundings, and if he were permitted to speak in his own defense, […]

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