Mountain People: Life and Culture in Appalachia
The voices of Appalachia spotlight centuries of social, political, economic, religious and agricultural characteristics of a distinct region.
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Date Range: 1700-1950
Content: 42,122 pages
Source Library: Lost Cause Press
Since its recognition as a distinctive region in the late 19th century, Appalachia has been a source of enduring myths and distortions regarding the isolation, temperament and behavior of its inhabitants. Early 20th-century writers focused on sensational aspects, such as moonshining and clan feuding, and often portrayed the region’s inhabitants as uneducated and prone to impulsive acts of violence.
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The story as depicted in this collection begins in the colonial era, describing the bloody warfare as migrants from Europe and their American-born offspring fought and eventually displaced Appalachia’s Native American inhabitants. It depicts the evolution of a farm- and forest-society, its divided and unhappy fate during the Civil War and the emergence of a new industrial order as railroads, towns and mining industries penetrated into the mountains.
Mountain People: Life and Culture in Appalachia serves students of American history, industry, education, religion and more. Its diaries, journals and narratives of explorers, emigrants, military men, Native Americans and travelers are complemented by accounts of the development of farming and mining communities, family histories and folklore.
Throughout the collection, a range of Appalachian voices enlivens the analysis and reminds us of the importance of storytelling in the ways the people of Appalachia define themselves and their region.