Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes Appalachian Dialect

Appalachia Through My Eyes – Chunk The Fire

My life in appalachia Chunk the fire

During these cold winter days I’m glad I’ve got someone who likes to chunk up the fire. He likes to throw another chunk of wood in the fire and watch the sparks fly. He was a chunk of a little boy-I can see that clearly when I look through his baby pictures.


*all examples of how the word chunk is used in Appalachia.

Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.

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  • Reply
    Susie Swanson
    January 20, 2014 at 11:13 am

    I’m hoping it won’t be to much longer till the chunking is over with. I’m so happy to have won the book giveaway and so looking forward to it. Thanks again Tipper.

  • Reply
    January 18, 2014 at 10:17 pm

    reading the posts on chunking,brings back my childhood in the Florida flatlands. Like a lot of the others, chunking pine cones and china berries was common. How many knew of the term, Running Water. We had running water. We Ran to the old pitcher pump in the yard, filled a bucket with water and ran back into the house. Hinse “running water”. Cooked on kerosene stove and stayed warm with fire place.

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    January 18, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    In addition to using “chunk” as a verb (chunking wood), there was this use of it as a noun: when someone came over to visit and couldn’t stay very long, my Aunt Lela would say, “Oh, don’t go yet — you just came for a chunk of fire.” When I asked about that expression, she told me that in the olden days, if your fire went out, you went to a neighbor with a bucket
    and borrowed a chunk of flaming log to start a new fire with.

  • Reply
    Jennifer in OR
    January 18, 2014 at 4:09 pm

    LOVE! NOTHING better than a warm fire on these cold days! I have a few kids around my house who are expert chunkers! I barely have to lift a finger around here! ~stay warm!

  • Reply
    Suzi Phillips
    January 18, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    Don’t think it will be too much longer before my wood chunker is gonna be ready for spring!

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    January 18, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    One of the first things I do when I
    get to the shop on Cold Winter days is Chunk Up the fire. My two girl cats are usually sitting in front of the stove, waiting for the blower to kick on, meowing so pitiful. But my little short-haired Whisky never says a word. Since he helps me getting in the wood, I think he knows that I’ll be puttin’ in some yellow Locust and soon it’ll be hotter than Hades…Ken

  • Reply
    January 18, 2014 at 11:49 am

    This is a region that has always fascinated me. I look forward to learning more.
    I live in the Ozarks and was raised by Depression Era parents.
    Glad my friend pointed me toward your blog.

  • Reply
    Ron Banks
    January 18, 2014 at 10:54 am

    We have gas logs in our fire place so I don’t have to chunk wood into it. I admit that I do like a wood fire better, just feels more natural. I do remember chunking coal into the old coal heater as a young child. It worked well but it was dirty and my parents eventually replaced it with a fuel burning stove which meant no more going to the coal pile with the bucket to haul it inside. That was a wonderful thing! We use to chunk things at each other as kids such as rocks, corn stalk root balls and Pine cones as hand grenades. I have had a few chunks taken out if my skin by those things!

  • Reply
    Chuck Dodds
    January 18, 2014 at 10:34 am

    Some of my closest friends gave me the nickname “Chunk” many years ago. I guess it is slang for “Chuck”. I am a 76 year old veteran and stand 6’4″ weighing in at 270. I suppose I am a pretty good size “chunk” after all. My birth name is Charles Robert but grew up as Cha, Chabob, and Charley Bob. Of course there was Charley in the mix also.

  • Reply
    January 18, 2014 at 9:23 am

    My parents relied on coal as their primary source of heat. The cooking was also done on a coal burning stove. I have chunked many chunks of coal before I converted to chunking wood in recent years. The woodburning stove sure has felt good this winter, making the hard work worth every minute of it.
    Wonder where John Anderson got the idea to sing “I’m Just An Old Chunk Of Coal?”

  • Reply
    January 18, 2014 at 8:47 am

    The only chunking I remember was for a fireplace, and growing up in the city, they were few and far between. However, I love it when I go into a home in the mountains and smell the burning of wood I can reminisce about how people lived long ago. I know chunking the wood was hard work, but it kept people in shape and appreciate the hard work. Also, I was a chunk as a baby, and I am still a chunk as an adult.

  • Reply
    Mary Lou McKillip
    January 18, 2014 at 8:46 am

    Tipper. There is nothing better than get warm by wood heat. We had wood heater one in the basement and one up top, sometimes the heat would run you outdoor. When I lost my first hubby by a heart attack I could no longer chunk the fire and I would get wood lodged and couldn’t close the door. Turned to heat pump no fuss no mess but wood heat holds good warm memories to me.

  • Reply
    Sue Crane
    January 18, 2014 at 8:36 am

    when my daughter was born my cousin (more like a brother) said she was his little Chunk. When my son got here he was Hunk and when another son followed he was Clunk!!!

  • Reply
    Eva Nell Mull, PhD
    January 18, 2014 at 8:35 am

    Well Tipper: This morning is so cold here if I still had a wood burning fireplace we would be ‘chuncking’ the wood into one of our fireplaces. But we just push a button and the flames appear. My daddy would be impressed with such!
    The sale of “Fiddler” is going good! I got another one sold on AMAZON.COM this morning. YEAH! IT JUST MAKES MY DAY! And I found a new book store over in OLD TOWN Knoxville where I just might place “Fiddler” soon.
    Best, Eva Nell

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    January 18, 2014 at 8:07 am

    Yep the Deer Hunter had a little chunky period when he was small. He was also the absolute sweetest child I’ve ever seen.
    Guess he was a little chunk of sweetness and love!

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    January 18, 2014 at 7:32 am

    Brrr wish I had a wood stove to chunk up the fire in this morning.

  • Reply
    lynn legge
    January 18, 2014 at 7:30 am

    tipper i wish we had a fireplace to warm by.. its a cold 16 here in pa.. and snow… hope all are warm and snug and healthy this saturday morning.. sending big hugs and love
    and as always thanks for the blind pig gang… i truly count you all as family.. and have loved hearing your history.

  • Reply
    January 18, 2014 at 7:25 am

    That car cost a chunk of change!

  • Reply
    January 18, 2014 at 7:22 am

    Wow, we burned wood when I was a boy and I remember “chunking” that wood in an old trailer hauling it back to the house and “chunking” it back out again, then my wife and I burn wood when we first married and we used that same old trailer to haul our wood.. then we moved and I built an outdoor wood heater, with a blower and piped it into the house, and I was the only one doing the cutting and hauling and “chunking” and it just got to be to much, and settled for gas.. and Ohh the old wood hauling trailer it’s still over at my Dad’s and he used to “chunck” wood for winter and cotton in the summer in it when he was a boy, that old trailer has seen a many a load “chunked” into it…

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