Appalachia Music

Chitter Got a New Fiddle


Chitter got herself a new fiddle. She found it on Murphy Yardsale.

I know a lot of you don’t fool with Facebook, but that’s where you’ll find all sorts of yardsale type pages. I reckon about every town has one. People post things they’re selling and other folks post about what they’re looking for. Chitter posted that she was looking for a fiddle and someone pointed her to a post about a fiddle being sold. Generally people who make a deal meet up at a public place to make the sales transaction.

Chitter had to go to Andrews to meet the gentlemen who was selling the fiddle.

It’s not the first thing she’s bought off Murphy Yardsale. I don’t like the thoughts of her going to meet a stranger so I usually go with her, but I couldn’t go for the fiddle so I made her promise she’d meet him in the busiest part of Ingles parking lot. Turned out the man was nice as could be. He’d bought the fiddle a couple years back from a man he went to church with. He had good intentions of learning to play the fiddle, but somehow he never got around to it. He said he only wanted his money back out of it and sold it to Chitter for what he’d paid for it, which happened to be a very good price.


As soon as she got home with the fiddle she set to work on it. It desperately needed strings along with some other minor work. I couldn’t believe she bought it without playing it, but she assured me it would be a good sounding fiddle. While she worked she teasingly said “I bet yall didn’t know I was a real life luthier.”

It took her a while but she finally got it ready to play. You can hear how the fiddle sounds. Click on the arrow on the right side of the photo box below until you come to the video then click on it to start it.



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As you can hear the fiddle has a wonderful sound.


The fiddle needs a little more work done on it before Chitter will be satisfied with it. But I’m dying to know more about the man who made it. There’s a sticker inside with: Made by Winslow King 1993. Chitter and I both googled around, but never found anything about him. If you happen to know who Winslow King is we’d sure love to hear about him.


Appalachian Cooking Class details

Come cook with me!

Location: John C. Campbell Folk School – Brasstown, NC
Date: Sunday, June 23 – Saturday, June 29, 2019
Instructors: Carolyn Anderson, Tipper Pressley

Experience the traditional Appalachian method of cooking, putting up, and preserving the bounty from nature’s garden. Receive hands-on training to make and process a variety of jellies, jams, and pickles for winter eating. You’ll also learn the importance of dessert in Appalachian culture and discover how to easily make the fanciest of traditional cakes. Completing this week of cultural foods, a day of bread making will produce biscuits and cornbread. All levels welcome.

Along with all that goodness Carolyn and I have planned a couple of field trips to allow students to see how local folks produce food for their families. The Folk School offers scholarships you can go here to find out more about them. For the rest of the class details go here.

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  • Reply
    Jason Breedlove
    May 23, 2021 at 12:09 pm

    Winslow was my Great Uncle. He was a wonderful man. His fiddles were special, he made them from old design specs of a strataverus, but in his word “then fix the flaws”. He was legally blind and deaf, tapped the wood to ensure it was the correct thickness. I adored that man, and would spend time with him every chance I got. Very lucky find you have, I hope you treasure it.

  • Reply
    Joel Blevins
    October 14, 2020 at 8:11 am

    I bought a fiddle from Winslow in or around 1978. He told me he was a gunsmith as well as a luthier. He said the violin I bought from him was probably made in Germany around the beginning of the 1900s, and he took it apart and re graduated the thicknesses of the front and back. He had a chart he used for that and that there were 40 different places he checked for the correct thickness. I learned about Winslow from a really good fiddler in Chattanooga. His fiddles were known for a rich strong sound. I still have the fiddle he sold me and I cherish it!

  • Reply
    lynn legge
    April 6, 2019 at 5:09 am

    tipper you raised a talented and beautiful little lady…..she plays wonderfully and looks like her heart lead her in the right direction…I so glad she knows to be safe…..much love to you all

  • Reply
    April 5, 2019 at 4:40 pm

    Gosh that fiddle sounds amazing, I speck that fiddle player has a little something to do with making that fiddle sing 🙂

  • Reply
    April 5, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    The violin sings. It is happy to again sing!

  • Reply
    April 5, 2019 at 10:09 am

    It sounds so beautiful! Listening to Chitter play brightened up my morning as it is raining cats and dogs in Richmond, Va. The fiddle itself is beautiful.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2019 at 9:26 am

    I could listen to Chitter all morning.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    April 5, 2019 at 9:23 am

    Sweet! (the fiddle, Chitter and the tune) Nice shirt too. I recognize the name. And I am one of the you all who did not know Chitter was a real luthier. Actually I don’t know it yet but I’ll take her word for it.

    Maybe I should go look for me a tiller. Is a person who runs a tiller a tillerer?

    • Reply
      Ed Ammons
      April 5, 2019 at 8:10 pm

      She’s a budding luthier! For anyone who can make the delicate jewelry she does building and repairing stringed instruments would come natural.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2019 at 9:16 am

    You all taught her well. Work for what you want and be a savvy shopper when it’s time to purchase. You have said that The Deer Hunter can fix anything. Chitter learned from him. Lots of folks could get the credit for her musical talent. Pap comes to mind first.

  • Reply
    April 5, 2019 at 9:13 am

    The talent is amazing, and it appears she is pushing to a new level by becoming the world’s youngest “Luthier.” In answer to Sherry Moore my grandfather was a logger and exposed to many timber rattlers. They placed the rattlers in the family guitar, and I never learned why….thought it was just a holding area for good conversation.

  • Reply
    Richard Shepherd
    April 5, 2019 at 8:48 am

    Fine looking and sounding fiddle, Chitter!….You did a good job playing it….I’d like to see and hear other tunes on it, too!….Sweet purchase!

  • Reply
    Leon Pantenburg
    April 5, 2019 at 8:39 am

    I love old fiddle stories! I got my second one as a gift from an old friend. It had hung on his wall as a decoration for about 30 years. It sounds really good. I love seeing those old abandoned instruments put back into use!

  • Reply
    aw griff
    April 5, 2019 at 8:02 am

    The fiddle sounds great and the playing was great too.

  • Reply
    Don Byers
    April 5, 2019 at 7:40 am

    Winslow King was a local fiddle player. I remember him. Get in touch with Sam Ensley 706-379-2367. Or Randall Collins….706-781-3924. Not sure about Randall’s number but I think that is right. He or Sam can tell you all about Winslow.

  • Reply
    Gayle Larson
    April 5, 2019 at 7:22 am

    Looks and sounds like she made a good deal. The girls have so much talent. I am sure you are proud.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    April 5, 2019 at 6:56 am

    I saw the fiddle and it’s lovely! I love that Chitter just immediately starts working on it to make it the best it can be. She is like her Dad, the Deerhunter, in that. He’s always working on something.
    I can’t wait to see/hear the finished product!

  • Reply
    Sherri Moore
    April 5, 2019 at 6:09 am

    Chitter”s fiddle soumds beautiful. I learned a new word from her, “luthier.” Chitter’s fiddle brought to mind a fiddle my husband inherited after his father passed away last year. This fiddle has a rattlesnake button inside. I did a little research
    and read buttons are placed inside to enhance the sound or to ward off evil spirits. Just wondering if you or your readers have ever heard of this.

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