This collection consists of the diaries, journals, and narratives of explorers, emigrants, military men, Native Americans, and travelers. In addition, there are accounts of the development of farming and mining communities, family histories, and folklore. These accounts provide a view of the of the vast region between Lexington, Kentucky and Winchester, Virginia, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Birmingham, Alabama, and provides information on the social, political, economic, scientific, religious and agricultural characteristics of the region.
Since its recognition as a distinctive region in the late 19th century, Appalachia has been a source of enduring myths and distortions regarding the isolation, temperament and behavior of its inhabitants. Early 20th-century writers focused on sensational aspects, such as moonshining and clan feuding, and often portrayed the regionâ€™s inhabitants as uneducated and prone to impulsive acts of violence.The story as depicted in this collection begins in the colonial era, describing the bloody warfare as migrants from Europe and their American-born offspring fought and eventually displaced Appalachiaâ€™s Native American inhabitants. It depicts the evolution of a farm- and forest-society, its divided and unhappy fate during the Civil War and the emergence of a new industrial order as railroads, towns and mining industries penetrated into the mountains. Diaries, journals and narratives of explorers, emigrants, military men, Native Americans and travelers are complemented by accounts of the development of farming and mining communities, family histories and folklore.
In 1908 and 1909, noted social reformer and "songcatcher" Olive Dame Campbell traveled with her husband, John C. Campbell, through the Southern Highlands region of Appalachia to survey the social and economic conditions in mountain communities. Throughout the journey, Olive kept a detailed diary offering a vivid, entertaining, and personal account of the places the couple visited, the people they met, and the mountain cultures they encountered. A print copy of the book is available in the Hamilton campus library at call number F217 .A65 C36 2012
The Digital Library of Appalachia compiles and records archival and historical resources pertaining to the southern and central Appalachian region’s culture. The materials of the DLA’s contents are provided by the Appalachian College Association member libraries special collections.
A repository with more than 44,000 volumes of books, over 200 periodical subscriptions, 8,000 sound recordings, and 1,500 videos and DVDs related to the Southern uplands, with strengths in the social sciences, regional history, folklore, music, religion, genealogy, fiction, and African and Native Appalachia.