Introduction

See also Songs as cultural artifacts, Ballad Projects

Appalachian Culture occupies an interesting position in mainstream American culture. For example, Appalachia is constructed as a polar opposite to New York City culture as represented in the New Yorker magazine. While New York City is sophisticated, urban, arts-centered, and the readers of the New Yorker tend to be highly educated, Appalachia in the eyes of New Yorker writers and editors is an incomprehensible Other. At the same time, Appalachian culture preserves aspects of Elizabethan English that got lost in mainstream English and this culture forms the basis of a lot of what is truly American in terms of various arts and crafts genres.

Ohio is part Appalachian and its cities have high numbers of families with roots in Appalachia due to the migration in the fifties and sixties for job opportunities. It is important for Ohio youngsters to learn about a culture that is so central to Ohio history and culture. Also, learning about this culture offers opportunities for extended study across the curriculum.

This page has many resources for the study of Appalachian culture. The focus here is particularly on Appalachian music.

Teaching Resources


This handout has materials Carolyn has used in an Appalachian project with fourth graders

Here are a couple of descriptions of the project:



Appalachian Culture and Economic DevelopmentRonald L. LewisWest Virginia UniversityDwight B. Billings
University of Kentucky


Tobey, AM. SIXTEEN TONS A Thematic Unit on the Music of the Coal Mining Industry


Books for Children, Adolescents, and Adults




Appalachian Ballad Collections


Ballads collected by Sir Francis Child

http://www.contemplator.com/child/index.html
http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/eng/child/index.htm

http://youtube.com/watch?v=ua0QuXO4wgE

Lomaxes

http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/lohtml/lorecexp.html
http://www.loc.gov/folklife/lomax/

Digital Library of Appalachia

http://www.aca-dla.org/
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Ballad Genres and Important Ballads

Cowboy songs

http://lonehand.com/cowboy_songs.htm
http://www.pbs.org/weta/thewest/resources/archives/five/songs.htm

http://youtube.com/watch?v=ziTIh_iaBNI
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Wreck of the Old 97

http://lol2.homestead.com/old97.html

Roots of Country Music: Carter family

http://youtube.com/watch?v=IDVNRJ227lU
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carter_Family

Murder ballads

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_ballad
http://www.lyricsdownload.com/louvin-brothers-knoxville-girl-lyrics.html

http://youtube.com/watch?v=YvXGLym-llE

Titanic

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Titanic_(song)
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Amelia Earhart

http://www.mudcat.org/@displaysong.cfm?SongID=247
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Appalachian Language

http://www.wvculture.org/history/journal_wvh/wvh30-2.html
An explanation
http://www.as.wvu.edu/~khazen/APPBIB2_2.htm
A bibliography of books about dialect
http://www.pbs.org/speak/seatosea/americanvarieties/AAVE/appalachia/
An article about Appalachian African Americans using language for identity

Coal Mining

Coal mining songs are a reflection of Appalachia's complex and tragic relationship with coal mining. The following files were discovered on Google Scholar and cover many aspects of how coal affects Appalachian culture and history.

Improving and Optimizing Operations: Things That Actually Work!


Wrenn, Corey Lee. Powerlessness and Pollution in Alleghany County, Virginia: A Historical Analysis of Paternalism and Economic Coercion in Appalachia and its Relationship with Environmental Degradation


Weiler, Stephan. The Economics of the Struggling, Structurally Unemployed


Lewis, Ronald. Appalachian Restructuring in Historical Perspective: Coal, Culture, and Social Change in West Virginia


Maggard, Sally. Schooling, Work Experience, and Gender: The Social Reproduction of Poverty in Mining Regions


Winston, Laurie. Clean Coal Technology: Environmental Solution or Greenwashing?


Smith, Angela. Myles Horton, Highlander Folk School, and the Wilder Coal Strike of 1932


Liddy, Sobel, and Yanni. Should We Keep This Court? An Economic Examination of Recent Decisions Made by the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals


Bingham, Clara. Under Mined - When a flood of toxic mining sludge wreaked havoc in Appalachia, how did the White House respond? By letting the coal company off the hook and firing the whistleblower.


Hufford, McMackin, Bady, and Fout. WAGING DEMOCRACY IN THE KINGDOM OF COAL: OVEC AND THE MOVEMENT FOR SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE IN CENTRAL APPALACHIA


Hook and Aleklett. Historical trends in American coal production and a possible future outlook


Geraghty and Wiseman, Conflict and Compromise: Changes in U.S. Strike Outcomes, 1880 to 1945


The Sociology of Southern Appalachia
David S. Walls and Dwight B. Billings


AMOS SHUMAN FEUDAL STATE IN THE 20TH CENTURY: LIFE, UNIONIZATION, AND ARMED REVOLT IN THE STRIKE ON PAINT AND CABIN CREEK, WEST VIRGINIA, 1912-1913


Stephen D. Mooney. MOUNTAIN VOICES The Socio-Cultural Ramifications of Declines in Coal Mining Employment and Production in the Southwestern Virginia Coalfields


Rachael Williams. The Imaginary South of Country-Western Music


OVEC and the Movement for Social and Environmental Justice in Central Appalachia 2002-2003. WAGING DEMOCRACY IN THE KINGDOM OF COAL


Massey Energy 2008 Report.

The Massey Energy Company owns the Upper Big Branch mine in which 29 miners were killed in 2010. This report shows their earnings and profits. They have a history of safety violations in their operations.

The Union Avoidance Industry in the United States
John Logan


No Rock Unturned: Revitalizing the Economies of Mining Dependent Communities
By: Joan Kuyek and Catherine Coumans


Historical Summary of Coal Mine Explosions in the United States, 1959-81 By J. K. Richmond, G. C. Price, M. J. Sapko, and E. M. Kawenski

Methane Emission From US. Coal Mines, A Survey
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR


Thornburg, Elizabeth. Judicial Hellholes, Lawsuit Climates, and Bad Social Science: Lessons from West Virginia


The Southern West Virginia Coal Mine Wars: An Interpretation Karen DM Harris


LAW AND PROPERTY IN THE MOUNTAINS: A POLITICAL ECONOMY OF RESOURCE LAND IN THE APPALACHIAN COALFIELDS Johanna Marie Haas, J.D.


Greenlee, R.W. And Yet They Are Poor: A Naturalistic Study of Rural Poverty and the Working Poor People of Appalachian Ohio


Gender struggle, scale, and the production of place in the Appalachian coalfieldsChristiana E MiewaldôEugene J McCannô

CALL AND RESPONSE Who Is the World?: Reflections on Music and Politics Twenty Years after Live AidReebee Garofalo

Hendrix and Ahern. Mortality in Appalachian Coal Mining Regions: The Value of Statistical Life Lost


Toxic Substances from Coal Energy: An Overview
by Carl M. Shy*


Billings, Dwight. Economic Representations in an American Region: What's at Stake in Appalachia


The Decline of Central Appalachian Coal and the Need for Economic Diversification Rory McIlmoil
Evan Hansen


Home in the McDowell County Coalfields: The African-American Population of Keystone, West Virginia
Deaner, Larry Scott


THE CULTURAL OPPOSITION TO CAPITALISM: MYTHBUSTING THROUGH OUR PAST Claudia R. Williamson

Behavior of a coal pillar prone to burst in the southern Appalachian Basin of the United States
Anthony Iannacchione


U.S. Coal Supply and Demand: 2009 Review Fred Freme

The Women of Appalachia: Their Heritage and Accomplishments

Faith, Power, and Conflict: Miner Preachers and the United Mine Workers of America in the Harlan County Mine Wars, 1931-1939 Carletta A. Bush

Bringing Down the Mountains: The Impact of Mountaintop Removal Surface Coal Mining on Southern West Virginia Communities, 1970-2004 Shirley L. Stewart Burns

WOMEN COAL MINERS: ANOTHER CHAPTER IN CENTRAL APPALACHIA’S STRUGGLE AGAINST HEGEMONY, 1973-1998Carletta H. Savage
The Life Cycle of a Coal Town: Widen, West Virginia, 1911-1963 Amanda J. Griffith

The de/re-territorialization of struggle in Appalachia: The legacy of “coal and class” and the cultural politics of community
Stuart Lorkin


A History of Jewish Life in the Central Appalachian Coalfields, 1870s to 1970s Deborah R. Weiner

Matewan Before the Massacre: Politics, Coal, and the Roots of Conflict in Mingo County, 1793-1920
Rebecca J. Bailey


The United Mine Workers of America and the Recognition of Occupational Respiratory Diseases, 1902-1968
Alan Denickson, PhD


Ross, M.H. The Appalachian Coal Miner: His Way of Living, Working, and Relating to Others


THE VALUE OF STORY THEORY IN PROVIDING CULTURALLY SENSITIVE ADVANCED PRACTICE NURSING IN RURAL APPALACHIA Cynthia Denice Gobble


Merchant, Taylor, Hodous. Coal Workers' Pneumoconiosis and Exposure to Other Carbonaceous Dust


Agreement between UMW and Bethlehem Mines Corporation, 1934


DEFENDERS OF APPALACHIA: THE CAMPAIGN TO ELIMINATE MOUNTAINTOP REMOVAL COAL MINING AND THE ROLE OF PUBLIC JUSTICE BY MARK BALLER∗ & LEOR JOSEPH PANTILAT**

General Resources

http://library.thinkquest.org/TQ0310443/Appalachian%20Culture.htm
General info
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Appalachian_culture
A list of related topics linked to wikipedia articles
http://www.arministry.org/appalachianculture.asp
A ministry page but has a lot of good resources
Technical information about the culture
http://www.apptrav.com/glossary.html
Glossary
http://blueridgeblog.blogs.com/blue_ridge_blog/appalachian_culture/index.html
An Appalachian blog (one person's perspective)

http://www.pampetty.com/appalachia.htm

http://www.appvoices.org/index.php?/frontporch/categories/C12/
Another blog

http://tnjn.com/2008/mar/24/photographer-preserves-appalac/
Info about a photographer (and incidental info about aspects of Appalachian culture, including snake handling)

http://www.byways.org/explore/activities/historic-places/stories/63449
Blue Ridge Parkway
http://southerndocumentaryfund.org/works-in-progress/the-face-of-appalachia/
Photos and other resources