Blog Archives

20 years of action, innovation and collaboration

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Appalachian Voices is celebrating two decades of bringing people together to stand up for the mountains, for clean rivers and drinking water, for farms, forests and wildlife, and for healthy communities across the Appalachian region.


Following Cherokee Footpaths

Hundreds of years ago, before interstate highways drove through the mountains, a network of trails winding around the Southern Appalachians served as the arteries of the sovereign Cherokee nation.


Service, Music and Community at Appalachian South Folklife Center

Several women in the back-to-the-land movement founded the Learning Day Camp in 1985. The camp continues today and reportedly has a powerful impact on children. Photos by Brandi Massey

The Appalachian South Folklife Center in southern West Virginia has weathered many storms over the past half century, yet continues to provide help to residents in need, education for youth, and a safe harbor for activists.


Walking the Walk of Preservation

At Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, reenactors commemorate the first crossing of the gap by European settlers in 1775. The trail marker denotes the beginning of the Boone Trace pathway at the park. Sam Compton, president of The Boone Society, notes that a gap in the trees seems to form a heart above Daniel Boone. Photo by Roberta Mills, Boone Society

History provides a sense of place. Increasingly, communities are building their own place in history, and finding that preserving the past and marketing it to visitors can also provide a boost in the present.


The Girls of Atomic City

The Untold Story of Women Who Helped Win World War II By Denise Kiernan Back when African Americans and Caucasian Americans couldn’t drink from the same water fountains and women were an anomaly in the workforce, a team of young


An Era of Undoing: The State of Appalachia’s Labor Unions

In the wake of Patriot Coal's broken promises to union miners and retirees, The United Mine Workers of America have represented their members' sense of injustice in cities and courtrooms across the region. Photo by Ann Smith, special to the UMW Journal

By Brian Sewell “We are union,” the marchers chanted. Blanketing the streets of downtown Charleston, W.Va., with bystanders shouting in support, the vocal crowd stretched for blocks behind a banner that read “Fighting for Fairness at Patriot.” Shortly after Patriot


The Spirit of Foxfire is Alive in Appalachia

Barry Stiles, curator of the Foxfire Museum, demonstrates blacksmithing skills in a traditional cabin maintained by the Foxfire Fund.

By Peter Boucher In 1966, a high school teacher in Rabun County, Ga., tried a new teaching approach in order to win the attention of his disobedient, disinterested students. He assigned his English class the task of interviewing Appalachian homesteaders


Historical Hidden Treasures of North Carolina

Photo by Kirk Savage

By Rachel Ellen Simon Junaluska Memorial Site, Museum, and Medicine Trail Cherokee warrior Junaluska was among the thousands of Native Americans that were forcibly relocated via the Trail of Tears in the 1830s. Unlike most, however, Junaluska was eventually able


Historical Hidden Treasures of Virginia

By Rachel Ellen Simon Hidden Treasures RELATED STORIES North Carolina Virginia Tennessee West Virginia Kentucky Pocahontas Exhibition Coal Mine Most may know it as the title of a lullaby, but “Baby Mine” is also the name of the first mine


Historical Hidden Treasures of Tennessee

By Rachel Ellen Simon Lost Sea / Craighead Caverns Sweetwater, Tennessee is home to the largest underground lake in America. Spanning over 4.5 acres, the Lost Sea lies hundreds of feet beneath a mountain within the Craighead Caverns cave system.