Appalachian Culture

Appalachian Culture
The Appalachian mountaineers have been discovered and forgotten many times. They first attracted national attention during the civil War. Their primitive agriculture disrupted by foragers and incessant guerrilla warfare, thousands of them straggled out of the mountains in search of food and shelter. Their plight was brought to the attention of President Lincoln, who promised that after the war a way would be found to aid the poor mountain people whom the world had bypassed and forgotten for so long. The war ended, President Lincoln was assassinated, and Appalachia was forgotten.

Appalachian people are considered a separate culture, made up of many unique backgrounds - Native Americans, Irish, English and Scotch, and then a third immigration of Germans and Poles - all blended together across the region. The mountains also figure into the uniqueness of Appalachia. The mountains kept Appalachia isolated from the rest of the country and from other people's involvement in their lives that they developed a distinctive culture.

Appalachians are very independent, they are very contented with the places that they live, they are very close to nature, they have a deep sense of a belief in God, and they have a deep sense of being friendly and kind to one another and helping one another, and taking care of everyone else in their needs. Appalachians also have a strong sense of what is right and what ought to be and a deep mistrust of anyone who is new, anyone who is a stranger. They resist change.
Appalachia has a very long history of exploitation. The struggle continues as each new chapter is written. The area is extremely rich in natural resources, one of which might be considered its people. However, though fabulous wealth has been generated in Appalachia, the mountaineer's share in it has been held to a minimum.

This beautiful region of steep wooded hills, narrow valleys, and winding streams is a land of contradictions and tragedy. Appalachia...