Tag Archives: history of appalachia

I won’t take a picture unless the moon is right, to say nothing of the sunlight and shadow

Born on January 15, 1864 in Grafton, WV, Frances Benjamin Johnston transcended both regional and national notions about women’s place in the 19th century to become a pioneer in American photography and photojournalism, and a crusader with her camera for the historic preservation of the Old South. Through her active encouragement of women who wished […]

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Home Guards lead to post Civil War feuds in Fentress County, TN

“No section of the great Civil War suffered so enduringly as that which was the boundary line between the sections, and no part of the boundary suffered more from devastations of war in the passing to and fro of armed forces and from the raids of marauding bands, than did Fentress County, TN. “Before the […]

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The Singin’ Fiddler of Lost Hope Hollow, a persona

Jean Thomas called him the “first primitive, unlettered Kentucky mountain minstrel to cross the sea to fiddle and sing his own and Elizabethan ballads in the Royal Albert Hall in London.” She presented to the American public a man she said spent his life in the mountains, never to come into contact with the modern […]

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Oh, I was one of Al Capone’s gang

E-d-i-g-i-o R-o-m-a-n-o. He was known as Frenchy LaRue. He was not known by his Italian name, he was known by his name of Frenchy LaRue. One afternoon the finance officer came down to my office, and this little man, he was about my size, very neatly dressed, his clothes were beginning to show wear— But […]

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Me & Bessie went out hunting any ole time

I was borned right here in these mountains, and since I was a boy I’ve knowed ever trail within twenty-five mile. My pappy were a gunsmith afore me and he teached me the trade. Pappy were the best gunsmith in four counties, and I wouldn’t swap one of them ole muzzle-loaders fer all the britch-Ioading […]

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