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folklore

Hickory Nut Gorge

Margaret Hester photo

Geology and hydrology go a long way toward explaining the rugged landscape of the Hickory Nut Gorge, southeast of Asheville. But science can only go so far toward helping us understand the mystique of that area. more

Good Reads

Two hundred years ago, early explorers of the Southern Appalachians pondered the piles of stone they encountered at “all the gaps in the mountains.” While most of those cairns have disappeared, they remain a mystery. more

Good Reads

When the total eclipse descends on Cherokee, North Carolina, this August, a tradition reaching back thousands of years will live on. more

Features

Oconaluftee Indian Village

Margaret Hester photo

For many of us, fragments of images or threadbare associations are exactly how we create memory. Even brain research tells us that we learn by forming connections to what we already know. more

Sweet Appalachia

When I was 4 years old I saw a cobra edging out from behind a wooden strawberry barrel in our garden. Naturally I was certain of what I had seen, despite the fact that I was not even on the same continent as any known, free roaming, cobra. more

Sweet Appalachia

“Your background is all you have; it starts you off.”

Maryland State Archives photo

Fifty years ago, when she was fifty, Ola Belle Reed looked back to tell the story of her life. For months we had been recording her songs. Now it was time for her life. more

Features

Influence not bound by gender

Henry Glassie photo

In 2009, seven years after the death of Ola Belle Reed, Maryland state folklorist Clifford Murphy set out to unearth how her mountain music was playing out in the small towns where her music had flourished. more

Features

Haunted by legacy

Historic Rugby Inc.

Walking dirt and gravel paths, I came upon mist hanging over fields and graveyards, obscuring the cupolas of Victorian houses that had stood on the same wood foundations since the 1800s. more

Features

The Saw Hog

Mandy Newham-Cobb illustration

“When I sent the book out the first time, a publisher promptly returned it with the comment, ‘You’ve got to be kidding’,” Storyteller Gary Carden said. “Eventually, I put in on the shelf." more

Good Reads