Home In Appalachia

Home in appalachia

Quote from Foxfire Magazine Fall 1988

“I was born here. My Pap and Mam was born and buried here, and their people before’em. We hain’t moving nowhere else no matter what comes, wet or dry, good or bad, hell or heaven. We’ll be here when the Big Morning comes.”



You Might Also Like


  • Reply
    Ray Presley
    March 9, 2021 at 9:03 am

    There comes a time when the babies mature and squeeze each other out of the nest, and sometimes even momma has to find another place to roost. I’m sure it’s a small “sacrifice.” Read lot of comments today about leaving the mountains but taking it along with us. As for my wife and myself, we have lived in “yankee” land or overseas for ages, and I often encounter remarks: “You have a bit of an accent” I will sometimes respond, “Yeah, I own it and you can’t buy it or fake it”

  • Reply
    Vernon Kimsey
    September 12, 2016 at 10:47 am

    Even if you have lived most of your life “off”, there is something that draws you back here if you were born here. If it’s those generations of ancestors buried in its rocky soil or not, something has you hanging on like the tree roots wrapped around the boulder on the side of a mountain highway. Like the old joke about why there are the pearly gates in heaven….it’s to keep the mountain folks from going home on the weekend. A lot of my childhood was spent going home on the weekend.

  • Reply
    Chuck Howell
    September 12, 2016 at 10:39 am

    “It killed the Old Man.” My uncle Jack Cordell would say about displacement of his Dad and family from what is now the “Great Smoky Mountain National Park.” The Bradley extended family (Clan) had lived there for generations and found it hard to leave. My grandparents on my mother’s side are buried in the Park. Uncle Jack was a “CCC Boy” and helped develop the Park, then served in the Army in WWII. I treasure my Smoky Mountain memories more than any others. I enjoy going back for “Homecomings “and will always love my Appalachian home.

  • Reply
    kenneth o. hoffman
    September 14, 2014 at 2:04 am

    Tipper: so many folks who came out from the great smokey mountains. to the west brought their heart and soul with them. i have been there and saw the treasures of that land. i know what my folks left behind.i know what was always dear to them. my fathers last wish was to go home ,one more time.he is gone now ,but i suspect he still roams,Silers bald,as he once did. love to all non seeing piggys. k.o.h

  • Reply
    September 14, 2014 at 12:31 am

    I found it. The movie was called “Wild River” made in 1960. I would have been 13 then.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    September 14, 2014 at 12:27 am

    Today’s blog reminds me of a movie I saw ages and ages ago about the farmers and hill folks in the Tennessee River valley that were displaced during FDR’s administration to build the TVA and flood parts with dams.
    There was an old woman who wouldn’t leave her family homestead, even when it was being surrounded by water as the dams filled. Finally, it got right up to her porch, they sent a rowboat, and she left, having no other alternative. Turning to watch the home that had been in her family for generations disappear as the boat rowed away from it, soon to be covered with water like her and her past had never existed.
    They moved her to a fine new tract home they’d built for the displaced in a development. Then didn’t hear from her for days, and going to check on her, found her dead – like it had killed her to leave her home or as her home disappeared, so did her life.
    I don’t remember what that movie was called, but it’s stuck in my mind for most of my life, with a lesson that nothing is forever.
    “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven…” Eccl 3:1(KJV)
    God bless.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    September 13, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    I’ve been gone from home for a long long time. I never intended to stay gone. I just wanted to work away long enough to get a good start. I never got far enough ahead and now time has run out. I am retired now so I could go home, I guess, and live off my “check.” But, that would be cheating. That would make me no better than the people I used to despise, the people with money and influence that came and took our family homes and forced us to move away to survive.
    I live down here in the Catawba River valley only about 50 feet higher the river itself but I can still see Table Rock and Linville Gorge from my window. I can drive up on Flat Gap or Mineral Springs Mountain and see Grandfather to the north, Mount Mitchell to the west, South Mountain State Park to the south and hundreds of unknown peaks in between. Only to the east and southeast does the terrain flatten out and thankfully there is generally a haze that covers it.

  • Reply
    Ethelene Dyer Jones
    September 13, 2014 at 6:24 pm

    As one born is Appalachia but who has lived in several places, and now live “out of the hills” in Middle Georgia, I can certainly identify with the sentiment and feeling of belonging in the mountains the Foxfire quotation expresses. I grow homesick for the hills, and probably always will.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 1:06 pm

    Deep thoughts in those words! I sometimes wonder if I really miss the city for the country. I really like the country, so I guess I’m a bit settled. I like the way the quote makes one think!

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 12:49 pm

    I totally love this! My parents once had a set of Foxfire books. I would invest in a set, but at my age, I fear the children who will someday settle my affairs will have their hands full. They will have to sort through my treasures and they will probably discard my beloved saved squash and Permillion seeds. Besides, I always have The Blind Pig anytime I need an Appalachian fix.
    Many, many years ago I worked with a troubled young man who had moved about a great deal. He told me that at least I knew where to go back to. He explained he had no roots and no idea of normal. We are so blessed to know exactly who we are and where we truly belong.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    September 13, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    “Home is where the heart is!”…as long as it is in Appalachia…
    I say…”Home is where the art is”…LOL
    Thanks Tipper,
    PS…There were times when my Mother was in misery because she didn’t live near Marshall, NC, when actually she wasn’t that far away here in East TN.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 11:12 am

    I’m one of the few in my generation who can say that I grew up in one place–one house was my home. I believe having deep roots is strengthening for life.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 10:55 am

    Sounds right to me!

  • Reply
    Joyce Heishman
    September 13, 2014 at 10:15 am

    What a wonderful feeling to know where home is. Moved so many times I have lost count. You are blessed.

  • Reply
    Roy Pipes
    September 13, 2014 at 9:50 am

    Tipper: I feel much the same – There is no place like home. These mountains are home.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 9:19 am

    That quote from Foxfire Magazine sounds about right. I moved way up north for a few years when I was young and still have nightmares about that place and it’s unfriendly people.

  • Reply
    Barbara Woodall
    September 13, 2014 at 8:28 am

    I reckon that about sums it up too.

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 8:03 am

    Also, I love that photograph.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    September 13, 2014 at 7:39 am

    Tipper–the material you quote reminds me of something Mark Cathey, a legendary hunter and fisherman from Indian Creek in Swain County, once said to famed movie cowboy Tom Mix. After having met Cathey, who was a delightful character and wonderful teller of tales, Mix tried to convince him to go to Hollywood with him and appear in movies.
    Cathey’s response was a classic one for a son of the Smokies: “I ain’t lost anything in Hollywood and have everything I need in these old mountains.”
    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    September 13, 2014 at 7:34 am

    It must be wonderful to be so rooted in a beautiful place.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    September 13, 2014 at 7:14 am

    When the big morning comes……I love it!

  • Leave a Reply