Monthly Archives: September 2020

DANCING IN THE CABBAGE PATCH Trees

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series: DANCING IN THE CABBAGE PATCH
Trees
Helen Hayes Wykle
EARTH DAY April 22, 2021

TREES

Three women at base of large poplar tree. Emily Hill is “standing” on the shoulders of other women. Columbus Creech [?] is to the right. [X_100_workers_2538_mod.jpg]

TAGS: trees, Katherine Pettit, Leon Deschamps, forest ecology, William Tye, poetry, edge habitats, logging, preservation, timber inventories, land dispossession, Steven Stoll, Lucy Braun, oak trees, Perfect Acre, edge habitats, Speculation Land Company, Tench Coxe, William Morris, North Carolina, archives,

Angela Melville Album II. Part III. “Logging.”[melv_II_album_109.jpg]

THE SOVEREIGN TREES

It would be difficult to ignore a tree at Pine Mountain. Like many students, they have personalities and carry memories and there are so many of them! Like great sovereigns, they fill the valley with fragile green in Spring and a brilliant dance of color in Fall. They are remembered as favorite courting markers, their roots a resting place for an outdoor barber, their leaves an endless work task, and their loud trunk-fall a cause for awe. Walking into the forest is almost always a topic of excitement and sometimes a poem and a reminder of how much we have in common with trees.

When students at Pine Mountain were asked to compose essays or poems in their English classes, or to write a scientific analysis, trees often figured into the picture. For example this poem by Pine Mountain School student William Tye found it’s way into Mountain Life and Work in the Spring of 1947

TREES

All about me stately oak trees
Send their sprawling branches upward:
Sovereign they stand
O’er trees about them.
Yet drab they look, standing leafless,
While other trees
Of less dimension
Proudly display their Easter garments.
But their assets are but folly:
For these trees which now so gaily
Show forth their beauty
And rejoice in their appearance —
Theirs shall be the destruction.
They shall but feed the soil
On which the oak tree thrives,
While waxing mightier
By their destruction
The oak tree stands
Sovereign still.

William Tye. Mountain Life and Work, Spring 1947, p. 12.

EARLY SETTLERS

When the European settlers came to America in the late 16th Century they left countries that had waged wars against trees as the population grew into the surrounding forests. The Native Americans, on the other hand, had a well-established and comfortable history born of respect for their surrounding forests. William Cronan, in his informative discussion of the changes that occurred in the land when the colonists arrived, tells it this way

“… the edge habitats once maintained by Indian fires tended to return to forest as Indian populations declined. but edge environments were also modified or reduced — and on a much larger scale — by clearing, an activity to which English settlers, with their fixed property boundaries, devoted far more concentrated attention than had the Indians. Whether edges became forests or fields, the eventual consequences were the same: to reduce — or sometimes, as with European livestock, to replace — the animal populations that had once inhabited them. The disappearance of deer, turkey, and other animals thus betokened not merely a new hunting economy but a new forest ecology as well. “

Cronon, William. Changes to the Land: Indians, Colonists, and the Ecology of New England, New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 1983, 2003, p. 108.

Katherine Pettit, one of the founders of Pine Mountain Settlement School, and a re-born colonist and a die-hard Colonial Dame, aspired to or imagined herself to be following in the footsteps of her European ancestors — sovereigns of another sort. Pettit may never have composed a poem to a tree (I would love to find one!) and she had a somewhat tenuous relationship to the surrounding forest. I say, “somewhat,” because she had both enormous respects for trees while she warily “politicked” — an activity designed to continue to encourage donations from the growing timber and mining industries. To many who still seek to understand her, she remains a walking enigma in her early years at Pine Mountain Settlement.

When Pettit arrived at Pine Mountain and saw the surrounding forest, she was enchanted and she was appalled. Giant chestnut trees were still in abundance. The mighty oaks were not yet being harvested in great number for the barrel staves of Blue Grass liquor, but timber for mine roofing supports was picking up and timber was being negotiated away the steep slopes of the Pine Mountain and the Black Mountain, along with any sale or transfer of land that could be negotiated.

On the other hand, maples were being regularly tapped for maple syrup by the community and giant poplars were being felled to build her new School buildings. The modest cabins in the hollows and along the stream banks on the Northside of the long Pine Mountain melted into the rural countryside and both charmed and apalled Pettit. The use of trees by Community and School were often marvels of ingenuity. Hickory bark was being pulled from young hickory trees to provide bottoms for chairs, baskets, and tilt-top tables. White oak shakes (shingles) were still being reeved with hand tools for the roofs of cabins. Trees were being planted and strategically removed throughout the new School site. Under Pettit’s supervision, trees were being managed and monitored.

“Mr. Causey reseating a chair with hickory splits.” [kingman_095b]

PINE MOUNTAIN SETTLEMENT SCHOOL TIMBER TRACT INVENTORY 1921

Forest management was monitored by Pettit and managed by her farmers and her new forester, Leon Deschamps. One of the earliest inventories of the timber tracts at Pine Mountain Settlement was completed c. 1921 by Deschamps, a native Belgian and the forester hired by Pettit and her staff to oversee both the forest and the farm at the School through the early 1920’s. What the Deschamp inventory shows is a healthy forest on the 119.48 acre inventoried tract. The School forest was a forest comprised of the standard timber resources of the day: maple, basswood, chestnut, white oak, red oak, poplar, beech, cucumber, hemlock, hickory, buckeye, ash, black walnut, and black gum, in the amounts indicated below

Maple115,000Cucumber7,500
Basswood85,000Hemlock4,500
Chestnut85,000hickory5,00
White Oak65,000Buckeye2,500
Red Oak65,000Ash2,500
Poplar40,000Black Walnut2,500
Beech15,000Black Gum2,500
Land Use Timber and Logging Record 1921, Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections

Deschamps advised Pettit that not more than 200 Board Foot Measurement (BFM)  were to be removed per acre per year and further advised that if there were large trees on the acre (what he described as “over mature”) that up to 400 BFM “could be removed without injury.”

Deschamps then provided a ten-year plan for management that included the lot to be cut and the Block (I, II, III) .  He adds

In 1921 lot 2 Block II was clear cut, this operation was necessary owing to the bad shape the forest had been left in after the previous logging operations conducted a few years ago. (A few more trees will be removed from this lot but not before 1926).

Land Use Timber and Logging Record 1921, Pine Mountain Settlement School Collections, p. 2
Pine Mountain Settlement School Forest Land – Pine Mountain Tract [2 pages] outlined by Leon Deschamps in 1921.

LEON DESCHAMPS AND THE “PERFECT ACRE”

During his years as the forester at Pine Mountain, Deschamps went on to create what he called the “ Perfect Acre.” It is was a small demonstration plot just behind the Chapel at the School. Today it bears little resemblance to Deschamp’s original plot as many of the trees have been removed when they over-grew the perimeter of the Chapel roof. The older trees created complex moisture issues for the backside of the Chapel and the potential for roof damage due to falling limbs and the near trees were “weeded out” of the Perfect Acre. It is difficult to know how Deschamps would have felt about this “weeding”.

In a letter from Pettit to Leon Deschamps. Just three years after the creation of the plot and after Deschamps had left the employee of the School, Pettit was fretting about the acre. Without the watchful eye of Deschamps, the little plot was causing concern. Miss Pettit with her usual demanding tone, asks Deschamp to give her some direction. Leon Deschamps had left the School in 1923 following his marriage to May Ritchie, one of the famous Singing Family of the Cumberlands Ritchies. The couple had moved to John C. Campbell Folk School in North Carolina where he had assumed a variety of responsibilities, including farmer, forester, and architect. Pettit’s letter pleads for guidance in dealing with the weeds on the site

July 2, 1928
Dear Mr. Deschamps:
You remember you told me never to go into the Perfect Acre, and do one single thing, unless you told me to. There is so much underbrush now, especially ironweed, that I believe something ought to be done about it. We have done a pretty good job getting rid of the ironweed on this place, and are at work now on dock and ragweed.

When I asked Mr. Browning if he could give a day’s work to getting the ironweed out of the perfect acre, he reminded me again of your orders. Now, if you have any further directions, please tell me. …

See: Leon Deschamps “The Perfect Acre”

We don’t have Leon Deschamp’s answer to Pettit, but it is certain that he had recommendations.

While the charm of the view out the back windows of the Chapel continues to be beautiful, and we don’t have the privilege of knowing what Deschamps replied to Pettit, nor have we photographs of the early “Perfect Acre”, the remnants of the perfect plot are still there. The anxious question from Pettit signals how rapidly the forest and the field can over-take the land and the vigilance needed to maintain the acreage at the Pine Mountain Settlement became a point of concern. An image of the plot today can be seen below. .

Deschamps’ “Perfect Acre,” May, 2016. [pmss_archives_perfect_acre_2016b.jpg]

KATHERINE PETTIT AND EMMA LUCY BRAUN

What we can discern from the brief exchanges we have gathered regarding the “Perfect Acre” is that Deschamp, the forester, and William Tye, the poet, were both passionate about trees and that Pettit was a responsible and a respecting steward. We also know that Katherine Pettit seems to have grown into her environmental conscience. At the end of her life became a vocal and energetic defender of trees. Her end-of-life advocacy for stands of virgin timber in Eastern Kentucky is well documented. She joined forces with her friend, the well-known environmentalist Emma Lucy Braun, to save the dwindling ‘big trees” of the area. Through Pettit’s efforts and those of Lucy Braun and others, many of Kentucky’s finest stands of timber and largest trees may be found in the south-eastern counties of Kentucky. See Big Trees.

THE SCRAMBLE FOR APPALACHIA

During the first two decades of Pine Mountain Settlement School, there were other forces at work in the forests at Pine Mountain. These forces had started their push against nature much earlier. Many of these depredations are still at work. Author, Steven Stoll, in his landmark study of the ecological dispossession of the Southern Appalachian mountains, traced several paths that he and others believe led to massive take-downs of virgin forest across the region. In his book, Ramp Hollow: the ordeal of Appalachia, (2018) Stoll is focused on western Pennsylvania and on West Virginia, but his observations encompass the Central Appalachians and call attention to threats that continue to emerge in the forests of the region.

001d [Elizabeth Roettinger photograph ?] 050_FN_occupations_homes_001d

By tracing the history of the Appalachian region from the seventeenth century to the twentieth, and by exploring the idea of the history of *enclosure as a part of the history of capitalism in the region, Stoll leads his readers on a worrisome journey. It’s a journey through the early Colonial exploitation of forests to the later clear-cutting and destruction of the Appalachian forests. In his well-written exploration of the subject, he highlights the ravages of clear-cutting.

Specifically, he explores the eventual dependency of many mountain households on the ecological base of the surrounding forests and ties that cultural relationship and its ecological threads to later practices of timber harvest. It is the interwoven practices of poor timber stewardship and no timber stewardship that he contends contributes to the ongoing saga of what he calls destructive dispossession. It is dispossession not unlike that which happened with coal.

This mercenary scramble for Appalachia as described by Stoll is compelling.

… An army could invade [Appalachia] but never dominate the mountains. Capital moved differently. It acted through individuals and institutions. It employed impersonal laws and the language of progress. Mountain people knew how to soldier and hunt, to track an animal or an enemy through the woods. But few of them could organize against an act of the legislature or to stop a clear-cut. The scramble built upon these vulnerabilities, but it did not happen all at once. The first thing it required was a conversion in the ownership and uses of the land.

Stoll, Steven. Ramp Hollow: The Ordeal of Appalachia, New York: Farrer and Strause, 2017, p.130-131.

DISPOSSESSION HISTORY

The conversion to dispossession came early in the Appalachian mountains in the form of land grants and very early purchases by wealthy speculators. These early mountain real estate “deals” are still being fought over and litigated. While much of the race to own land as a form of capital was quite early, the sale and re-sale and poor record tracking resulted in decades of litigation. A classic example of the practice of land speculation can be found in the so-called Speculation Lands tracts owned by Tench Coxe, his partners and successors in the state of North Carolina. The Coxe empire that spread throughout Western North Carolina and eventually encompassed over 144,000 acres sheds considerable light on the questionable race to “disposes” by any and all means. Records from the large Speculation Lands Company are held by the University of North Carolina at Asheville, Appalachian State, and at Chapel Hill and together they represent an instructive example of the “dispossession” process.

Tench Coxe (May 22, 1755 – July 17, 1824) was an American political economist and a delegate for Pennsylvania to the Continental Congress in 1788–1789. His skills at dispossession were well known during his lifetime. It is telling that he was known to his political opponents as “Mr. Facing Bothways.” As assistant to Alexander Hamilton the Secretary of the Treasury under George Washington, Coxe was an “insider.” He was also no new-comer to the monetizing of land-holdings. The cycle of his speculation centered on timber and minerals and strategies to dispossess as many landholders as possible in the far reaches of western North Carolina.

One of his partners was Robert Morris, a signer of the Declaration of Independence, who unlike, Coxe and his successors, pushed his “speculation” (another word for dispossession) beyond his means and ended up in debtor’ prison. Speculators such as Coxe, Morris, Blount, in Tennessee, and earlier even George Washington in Kentucky, set the bar for land speculation. Coxe and partners began their empire by borrowing money (some $9,000) in order to purchase land at .09 cents an acre. The land held in Western North Carolina was over the years passed along to other investors who continued the process of dispossession and a long cycle of litigation that was not completed until the late 1920s and involved investors in England and in France. The dispossession is still going on. In Kentucky, the land and timber saga has much the same narrative and can be traced in the activity of surveyors, landowners, and speculators.

It is likely that Katherine Pettit sensed this history would be written. Late in her life she returned to trees. Like old friends, she embraced them and joined with well-known environmentalist Emma Lucy Braun to spend many of her last years fighting to save the remaining patriarchs of the forests in Kentucky and Ohio.

As this Pine Mountain student reminds us about the presence of trees

All about me stately oak trees
Send their sprawling branches upward:
Sovereign they stand
O’er trees about them.
Yet drab they look, standing leafless,
While other trees
Of less dimension
Proudly display their Easter garments.
……

George William Tye

SEE ALSO:

LEON DESCHAMPS

LEON DESCHAMPS The Perfect Acre

 EMMA LUCY BRAUN

GEORGE WILLIAM TYE Student

 

 

DANCING IN THE CABBAGE PATCH Moonshine

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 11: FARM
Series: DANCING IN THE CABBAGE PATCH 
hhw 2021-09-13

TAGS: Moonshine, Women’s Christian Temperance Union, W.C.T.U, Frances Beauchamp, Kentucky Federation of Women’s Clubs, Katherine Pettit, May Stone, Ethel de Long, Henry Mixter Penniman, Michael McGeer, Abner Boggs, Bish Boggs, Lucy Furman, Percy McKaye, moonshine stills, kettles, 

MOONSHINE

Moonshine was not a favored drink of mountain settlement workers, but it was certainly a favorite topic of conversation and generated many a tall tale within the community. The stories about moonshiners, moonshine stills, brushes with revenuers, and competition between distillers, were often collected and repeated by workers, the community, and visitors to eastern Kentucky and other locations in the Central and Southern Appalachians. These tales abound in staff letters, diaries, and scrapbooks in the Pine Mountain archive.

When Katherine Pettit founded Hindman Settlement School with May Stone in 1902, near the small town of Hyden in Knott County, Kentucky, she was under the blessings of the W.C.T.U, the Women’s Christian Temperance Union but she was privately following the national trend toward Progressivism. While the two may seem to cancel one another out, they were strange companions in the opening years of the twentieth century.

By 1910 and in the following years the term progressive was commonly used in a variety of political ways. [*See: Michael McGeer. A Fierce Discontent: The Rise and Fall of the Progressive Movement in America, 2003] Hindman, in 1902, was in the mainstream of the progressive Settlement Movement but it was also under the influence of the other national trend, that is the WCTU or the Women’s Christian Temperance Union.

The WCTU provided funds for Hindman during its first thirteen years but the relationship soon began to unravel as the progressive ideas of Jane Addams and many of her colleagues saturated in progressive idealism did not play well with the WCTU. At the risk of the loss of funding from the WCTU, the women in Eastern Kentucky’s settlements held steady for the early institutional years as the WCTU funding comprised a considerable amount of the school’s operational budget.

During these WCTU early years, Pettit and Stone were bolstered by the Kentucky Federation of Women’s Clubs and a close friendship with Frances Beauchamp, the Kentucky president of the WCTU. With this strong but disparate support, Pettit and Stone mounted a vigorous campaign to eradicate alcoholism through a program of education that focused on social and moral reform and scientific agriculture.  But, Pettit and Stone and their Women’s Club friends were not hatchet carriers like Carrie Nation. They believed that reform started from within and not from without.  The emphasis placed on health work that Pettit learned at Hindman carried over into her work and programs at Pine Mountain.

Following the departure of Katherine Pettit to Pine Mountain in 1913, the funding from the WCTU at Hindman dwindled and the school experienced several disastrous fires that added to their woes. In 1915, two years after Pettit departed, Hindman experienced a “Broadening Out,” as they described it and the name of the institution was formally changed from the W.C.T.U Settlement to the Hindman Settlement School.  The name change came just as prohibition began to be a hot political debate in the state of Kentucky and as the Progressive movement rose in favoritism. Frances Beauchamp, President of the Kentucky WCTU and a friend of Pettit, was soon the object of considerable “mudslinging” as described by Jess Stoddart in her well-researched history The Story of Hindman Settlement School, (Stoddart 2002, p.82.)

While references to the WCTU school disappeared in the wake of the political battles of Prohibition, the settlement at Hindman also was charting a new and progressive educational course. Angered by the perceived retrenchment from prohibition, some significant donors pulled their support for the school.  All the while, moonshine did not go away. It continued to light the midnight production of corn liquor and the revenue continued to support families who lived on the economic margins of society. Moonshine, after all, was a very persuasive form of social capital not unlike that seen in many parts of the world — not just Appalachia.

Like Hindman, the relationship of Pine Mountain to corn liquor is a story that is not easily altered by a simple change of name. Nor is the Kentucky tale a unique one. One of the most striking markers of Appalachia’s current return to what is often referred to as  “localism” can also be found in locations as diverse as some South American countries and some countries in Asia, particularly in Thailand, Myanmar and Viet Nam.  In those latter Asian countries, the nostalgia for social capital has been used to push for reform in health services, agriculture, and a variety of other older practices that were remembered as part of a healthy democracy.

It is interesting that place-based education, a kind of localism, has often returned to indigenous knowledge and past practice for educational assistance in an effort to re-form and inform social capital. A brief visit of a group of Viet Nam visitors to Pine Mountain in the early 1970’s revealed much about the common issues in the two countries, including the power of Asian “moonshine” cooperation to work its magic in restoring civic engagement and to nudge the people toward less destructive economic initiatives.

In Appalachia drinking was a discreet part of many social gatherings. It enhanced conversation, made young men bold, softened the sensibilities of young women, and lessened the aching back of the subsistence farmer. In many cases it was the juice of existence, providing desperate families a means of providing for a house full of children or a poor crop. But it is the stories of rampant drinking and associated violence like that documented in the records of the Hyden school and also at Pine Mountain, particularly in the health centers at Big Laurel and Line Fork, that are seared into the public mind.

  The novels of Lucy Furman, a staff member at Hindman, and many other writers promoted  “moonshine stories”  to an eager national audience. Percy MacKaye, the playwright, John Fox, Jr., and other visitors to Pine Mountain continued to romanticize the practice of distillation of the mountain’s principal crop — corn. John Fox, Jr. was notoriously energized by the marketing of what Darlene Wilson in her article for Back Talk From Appalachia (1999) called the “dichotomous stereotype of twin Kentuckys  — the twins being the “…sneaky, murderous, moonshiners,” versus the “civilized ‘outer-world’ of the rest of the state. (See: Wilson, Back Talk … p. 112).  Yet, marketing and publications at Hindman and later at Pine Mountain can be found using moonshine stories to capture the imagination of an audience that believed the area to be rampant with stills and guns.  

Unfortunately, the written records of the rural settlement schools, largely the record of “outsider authors”, gave credence to some of the tales of violence, redemption, and survival centered on moonshine.  After all, in the 1920s Harlan County’s murder rate was the highest in the country — a ready testimony to the mixture of guns and alcohol.  “Bloody Harlan” was at its core a name born out of the mine wars, but the rage was often fed by corn liquor. But, then, even this story is much more complex than the easy tales often spun about moonshine in the mountains of Kentucky and there is little doubt that it enables the easy path to the long road of stereotyping.

THE MOONSHINE MEN OF KENTUCKY

The_Moonshine_Man_of_Kentucky_Harper's_Weekly_1877

“The Moonshine Men of Kentucky,” Harper’s Weekly, October 20, 1877.

At any rate, Pine Mountain staff and community also added to the many moonshine tales found in the public literature. After all, moonshine tales are good entertainment for many. One of Pettit’s first traveling companions into eastern Kentucky was the “expert” on mountain moonshine tales, Henry Mixter Penniman. The Rev. Penniman was a faculty member at Berea College in Kentucky and a well-known authority on mountain culture. It was Penniman who had led Pettit and a group of fellow troupers into the eastern mountains to explore the Appalachian culture. Berea often accommodated visitors and their own faculty who wished to visit the rugged mountains of eastern Kentucky and to see first-hand how the “notorious” mountaineer lived.  Often visitors were directed by the college or the President, to seek out the Pine Mountain area in order to give the folk a deeper dive into the local culture of Appalachia. Berea had for many years provided consultation and support to the settlement schools in the southeastern corner of the state and was particularly fond of Hindman and Pine Mountain.  Many articles by William G. Frost, an early President of Berea , and by his faculty from the college, signaled that they felt the region to be under their care and their watchful eye.  They kept in close touch with the settlement schools in the southeastern region and “moonshine” was often part of their concern and sometimes and somewhat, their exaggerated focus. Penniman was their moonshine expert.

DR. HENRY MIXTER PENNIMAN

Dr. Penniman, a faculty at Berea College, was particularly concerned by what he saw in the Southern Appalachians and in its people and was someone who had built up good relations with many of the people in the southeast corner of the state. He was a close observer of the culture and of the language and the wry humor of the people of the region. Not much was missed by Penniman, as seen in two tales both collected and somewhat concocted and, reportedly, recited by Penniman in public performances. These selections from the Berea Quarterly have surrogates in the archival record at Pine Mountain.

THE BEREA QUARTERLY 1908, p. 20-22
Henry Mixter Penninman

EDITORIAL NOTE:

Professor Penniman is a Massachusetts man, educated at Brown University and Andover Seminary, who has been connected with Berea since 1895. More than any other member of our Faculty he has assisted the President in making friends for our enterprise, and more than any other, except Professor Dinsmore, he has come into immediate contact with the mountaineers. He is what the Kentuckians call a “good mixer,” and he has preached on half the creeks in Eastern Kentucky, entering into the real life of the people with a sympathy which opens their hearts.

Professor Penniman has a keen sense of the ludicrous and a good scent for literary material as well. Instead of giving a statistical or scientific account, he gives pictures, impressions, which have made his presentations of the mountain work most attractive, in spite of his being a ”minister of the Gospel” he has become a great impersonator, so that a business men’s club. or a camping party in the Adirondacks counts itself fortunate when it can secure an hour of his recitals.

We find room this month for one brief anecdote which is almost a photograph, but a photograph selected with an artist’s eye. Following it is a testimonial which recently came to President Frost regarding Professor Penniman’s impersonations before well-known people in Cincinnati.

“DRUNK INNERCENT”

Henry Mixter Penniman.

Splash, splash down the mountain passway, for the path lay in a stream fretting and playing in the narrows of a “V” shaped valley. A mountaineer on his big mule and a preacher on his horse, after a long, hot, hard day were riding forward in the edge of the night. The preacher was tired enough to fall off.

A long silence was broken by the man on the mule.

“Mr. Preacher, you’ve ben yere nigh six year an all thet time I’ve knowed you’ve wanted to ast me one thing an you ain’t ast hit. Now I’m goin to promise hit to ye without your astin.

“You’ve alius wanted to ast me not to drink no mo’. Now I promise I’ll drink no mo’.”

This was like a clap of thunder out of a clear sky. The horse moved over to the mule, and the big mountain hand almost crushed the preacher’s. The stump and rock in mid-stream that made them unclasp was a relief.

Again the silence was broken.

“Mr. Preacher this country will take notice that I am quitting and they’ll know you are into hit, and thars plenty of folks round yere will try and spile your mind about me. Now if you hear I git drunk come to me, ef I get drunk I’ll tell ye an I’ll still be a pullin’ to be a temperance man.”

Not long after, the preacher heard his mountain friend was drunk and riding to his cabin asked point blank,

“Did you get drunk?”

“Yes” was the answer,

“I got powerful drunk but I got drunk innercent.

” How was that?

“I’m troubled with cramps, when them cramps ketch holt I hev to hev some whiskey to subjew their pain and when I git nuf whiskey down to subjew their pain, hit onhinges my ides as to what’s right and I slip into the rest innercent.”

‘ ‘Mr. Preacher I don’t low hits wrong to take er dram, but I do say hits wrong to git drunk. I cayn’t tak er dram and not tak mo’, so I ain’t goin to tak er dram.”

HARD AND HIS KETTLE

Another tale, among many about the use and abuse of Moonshine can be found in the Pine Mountain Settlement School collections .”Hard and His Kettle,”  is a chapter from Henry Mixter Penniman’s book, Moonshine Life of the Mountains of Kentucky.  It is uncertain whether the book was published, but this particular chapter was printed in the Berea Quarterly, Vol. 12 No. 9, 1908 and captures the same regional dialect and humor often found in the community around Pine Mountain.

The typescript found here varies only slightly from the Berea Quarterly version and appears to be a transcript from the papers of Katherine Pettit 

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