Issue 5: December 2004



The Electoral Non-Issue

On November 2nd, Americans turned out in droves to cast their votes for president. Yet before a single vote was counted, it was clear who the real losers of the 2004 election were. They were the future generations of Americans whose health and quality of life depend so heavily on decisions our political leaders make […]


General Stores Still Making it in the Mountains

It is an almost balmy afternoon, the cloudless sky opening wide against the tightly wooded ridges of the Blue Ridge Mountains. I am driving west out of Charlottesville, Virginia, on a gently curving road through open farmland, passing long weathered fences, an occasional estate home, a few horse barns, and then a steeplechase off to […]


Leaves of Three, Let it Be

My last article for the Appalachian Voice addressed the exquisite little inconvenience known as chiggers. I’ll continue on the theme of “itch” and explore the plant of myth and misery known as poison ivy (Toxicodendron radicans). A member of the cashew family, poison ivy has close cousins in poison oak, and poison sumac. However, […]


The Healthy Air Industry

When Person County Manager Steve Carpenter talks about the North Carolina Clean Smokestacks Act (CSA), the enthusiasm in his voice is unmistakable. But the enthusiasm is not because of the much cleaner air that he and his constituents will soon be breathing as a direct result of the CSA. No, when Steve Carpenter thinks […]


Give a Gift to the Mountains

Have you ever thought of a dollar as a vote? The average American will spend $800 on gifts this holiday season, and with each dollar, consumers have the choice to cast their vote for businesses that care about their communities and the environment. Appalachia is home to thousands of locally-owned businesses that have been sustaining […]


Wendell Berry on Sustainability, Citizenship and Becoming a Native

For over forty years, Wendell Berry has written from his hillside farm in Kentucky. Through more than thirty books of fiction, poetry and nonfiction, he has critiqued the many problems of our American lifestyle while also offering more ecologically sane alternatives. What follows are excerpts from an interview with Berry conducted in November of 2003. […]


Appalachian Voices Sets Course for Future at Strategic Planning Retreat

On a beautiful November weekend in Boone, members of Appalachian Voices staff and board of directors met to set the course for the organization for the next three years. We discussed our conservation programs, as well the organizational nuts and bolts necessary to meet our goals of ending mountaintop removal, eliminating air pollution, and restoring […]


Be a Part of the "Voice"

Did any of you regular readers of the Appalachian Voice ever wonder how a small non-profit group is able to put out 70,000 free newspapers every 2 months and distribute them out to six states? Unlike many for-profit publications that have large staffs and the ability to pay distributors, the Appalachian Voice is put together […]


To Save the Land and People

Reviewed by Michael Hodges-Foret How can a land be so rich, and its people so poor? According to Chad Montrie, a historian at the University of Massachusetts-Lowell, this is the “enduring paradox” of Appalachia. To Save the Land and People explores one aspect of that paradox, the opposition to surface coal mining in Appalachia. Montrie […]


Blue Ridge Echo

Stop at almost any east-facing overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway in northwestern North Carolina and you will see layers of mountains retreating into the distance. Most people assume that they are looking at the Blue Ridge Mountains. While spurs of the Blue Ridge range do taper to the east, the most prominent peaks […]


Sue Daniel Memorial Fund Announced

Appalachian Voices is honored to be chosen as a recipient of donations in memory of Sue Daniels, a leading mountaintop removal activist from Blacksburg, Virginia, who passed away in November. As a leader of the Blacksburg-based organization Mountain Justice, Sue’s dedication to ending mountaintop removal was extraordinary. Sue took dozens of people to West Virginia […]