On moonshine and serpents …

I’m not sure what I expected, but it wasn’t this. The Rev. Jimmy Morrow was approachable. Kind. Sincere. A small group gathered around him at the opening of the Vanishing Appalachia exhibit today while Morrow talked about everything from local history to, well, snake handling. Or more correctly, serpent handling. I guess what I really […]

Hiking in Ocala National Forest

I fled to Florida with the idea of spending a lot of time on the water, but winds and cold temperatures combined to limit my paddling opportunities. So I decided to try hiking the Ocala National Forest. I drove to Salt Springs, where I walked around and checked out the natural spring at the park. […]

Meet a mule skinner

Tom Jester passed along this photo of Arthur Bullington, a mule skinner in Cocke County, Tennessee. I’m assuming the photo is by photographer Don Dudenbostel, whose work never fails to stop me in my tracks. This is yet another example of the way Tom and Don are documenting disappearing Appalachian lifestyles. They also knew and […]

Popcorn Sutton and the art of moonshine …

“Jesus turned the water into wine. I turned it into damned liquor.” That’s legendary moonshiner Popcorn Sutton, talking to my buddy Tom Jester during one of Tom and photographer Don Dudenbostel’s visits with Popcorn. The duo ended up with an amazing chronicle of the ornery, contrarian mountain alchemist. The News Sentinel’s Fred Brown did a […]