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Mountain Life & Work vol. 06 no. 4 January, 1931 Council of the Southern Mountains 400dpi TIFF G4 page images University of Kentucky, Electronic Information Access & Management Center Lexington, Kentucky 2003 mlwv6n40131 These pages may freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. Mountain Life & Work vol. 06 no. 4 January, 1931 Council of the Southern Mountains Berea College; Council of the Southern Mountains Berea, Kentucky January, 1931 $IMLS This electronic text file was created by Optical Character Recognition (OCR). No corrections have been made to the OCR-ed text and no editing has been done to the content of the original document. Encoding has been done through an automated process using the recommendations for Level 1 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines. Digital page images are linked to the text file. Volume VI January, 1931 Government Forests and the Mountain Problem School for Workers Who Have Moved from Mountain to Mill Recollections of Twenty Years Two Poems -Charles D. Lewis 2 Louise Leonard McLaren 10 -Edward W. Hughes 15 -Ann Cobb 19 The Future of the Mountain Home -W. S. Anderson 20 Back of Yesterday -Helen H. Dingman 23 An Experiment in Guidance James L. Robb 25 Red Cross Drought Relief in Kentucky -Maurice R. Reddy 30 A Mountain Parable -May Justus 31 Number IV Published Quarterly at Berea College, Berea, Ky., in the interest of fellowship and mutual understanding between the Appalachian Mountains and the rest of the nation January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Mountain Life'Ã¢â‚¬Å¾ Work Volume VI January, 1931 Number IV Mountain Life and Work Helen H. Dingman .. . Editor Dr. Wm. James Hutchins . . . .. . . . Counsellor Orrin L. Keener . . . . . . . . . . Associate Editor Matt B. Smith. . . . . . . . . Associate Editor CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Dr. Warren H. Wilson . . . . . . New York City Mrs. John C Campbell . . . . Brasstown, N. C. Mr. Marshall E. Vaughn . . . . . . . Atlanta, Ga. Dr. John P. McConnell . . . . East Radford, Va. Dr. Arthur T. McCormack . . . . Louisville, Ky. Dr. E C Branson . . . . . . . . Chapel Hill, N. C. Dr. John J. Tigert . . . . . . . . . . Gainesville, Fla. ISSUED QUARTERLY-JANUARY, APRIL, JULY, OCTOBER Subscription Price $1.00 per year. Single Copy 30c. Entered at the Post Office at Berea, Ky., as second class mail matter. ADDRESS ALI, COMMUNICATIONS TO MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK BEREA, KENTUCKY IS THIS A SOLUTION? It is most significant when two writers without any consultation arrive at practically the same conclusions in their solution of a very vital economic problem. Dr. Lewis in his article "Government Forests and the Mountain Problem," and by Dr. Anderson in "The Future of the Mountain Home" both advocate depopulation and reforestation of areas in the mountains where agriculture as a means of livelihood has proved impossible. To many, such radical advice may seem revolutionary, but the fact that in certain areas a satisfying living has not yet been achieved stares mountain workers in the face -,.nd challenges all students of social and economic problems. What do you think about it:' The editors invite correspondence. OLTR INDUSTRIAL PROBLEMS An opportunity for Conference members to get more light on industrial problems is offered by the Southern Summer School for Women Workers in Industry, which meets at Arden, North Carolina, for six weeks this coming summer. Mrs. McLaren, the director, is planning a special week-end ;for mountain workers. A's she says in her article, "School for Workers Who Have Moved from Mountain to Mill" printed in this number, "Exchange of experience would be of value to all-to the Summer School group it would mean better understanding of the progress made in agricultural methods and in improvement of life in the mountains, while to the mountain social worker such an informal conference should mean new knowledge of the present situation in southern industry, and of economic conditions facing mountain people when they move to the industrial town. Expenses for such a week-end meeting would not be over three dollars for a twoday conference." Definite plans for this meeting will be discussed at the Conference of Southern Mountain Workers in Knoxville. It is hoped that enough people will signify their interest so that plans can be made ahead for a splendid program. THE CONFERENCE The Conference of Southern Mountain Workers meets at Knoxville, March 24-26. Among the speakers who will lead our thought are Dr. Fannie Dunn of Teachers College, Dr. L. C. Gray of the Bureau of Agricultural Economics, Washington, D. C., Dr. John D. Willard of the American Association of Adult Education and Mr. C. C. Hann of the School of Religion, Vanderbilt University. Page 2 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 The Highland Region of the Eastern United States presents a problem to society because the population living within its borders suffers very seriously from two fundamental evils, a low wealth-producing power and difficulty of communication. It is not, in the main, a region of small natural wealth, but of a type of wealth which cannot be developed without the aid of large capital and a complex distributing organization. Vast deposits of coal and other minerals exist within it, but these cannot be placed upon the market except as outside capital provides modern facilities for production and transportation. Potential hydro-electric power is found in even greater abundance than are minerals, but this, too, must await the advent of capital and scientific means of translating falling water into electric current. Thus we find a large area, the "back yards of seven states," included in the region known as the Southern Highlands. Structurally this region is made up of the ancient ridges that are the remains of a great mountain uplift, and to the northwest of this a deeply dissected plateau region that reaches out toward the Ohio River. Tributaries of the Ohio have eaten deep into this land area, as they have pushed their sources back to meet the rivers that are driving valleys into the region from the east and south in an advance from the Atlantic and the Gulf. Hardy pioneers used these rivers from the opposite sides of the mountains, and the low passes between their head waters, as routes for ,journeying into new lands of the Great Valley a hundred and fifty years ago. Few settlements were made in the upper valley, but lower down, where there were broad and fertile bottom lands along their courses, many of these early immigrants chose their homes. In many cases these mountain valleys were deliberately chosen in preference to the land of the "levels" of Kentucky, of middle Tennessee, or the prairies to the west. There were two principal reasons for this, the abundance of wild pea, and less danger from Indian attacks. Government Forests anal the Mountain Problem CHARLES D. LEWIS The writer is familiar with a tributary of the Cumberland that was occupied by a party of Irish settlers, about 1780, in preference to land about Lexington. The valley was from a half to three-quarters of a mile broad, very fertile, and covered with a growth of cane. The adjacent hill land, however, was as densely covered with peas, providing a rich pasturage for cattle and attracting a wealth of game. As late as 1900 it was said that for more than fifteen miles every person then living in the valley was blood kin and descended from the group of first settlers. Especially noted for its breadth and fertility is the valley of the Tennessee and its tributaries, extending from Chattanooga well into Virginia. In traveling through this valley one loses sight of the fact that it is a mountain valley; but the southwestern extension of the Cumberland Mountains, Walden's Ridge and the Plateau itself, which give a strip of typical "mountain" to the east of the middle Tennessee basin, shows that this region is physiographically only a larger pattern of hundreds and even thousands of lesser valleys scattered through the Highland region that make pleasant and prosperous farming communities. For a few generations the smaller mountain valleys, though limited in extent, made excellent homes for those who settled in them. In Clay county, Kentucky, the rich bottoms of the South Fork of the Kentucky River and its tributaries have been the home of some of the leading families of the state, and have furnished a governor and other leaders of the Commonwealth. But families were unusually large, and the richer and broader valleys were soon taken up. Then there came a crowding of population that worked in two directions. Many of the best young people moved outt; find opportunities where farming land of the better type was more abundant. Others of lower ability, it may be, or less ambition, went up the smaller streams to clear narrow bottoms, and extend their farm lands up the steep hillsides. The narrow valleys gave small epportu January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page nity for road construction, and often the stream-bed became the public highway. Cornfields were pushed higher and higher up the hillsides until horse cultivation became almost or quite impossible. The writer has seen a field of twenty acres so steep that a horse had never been in it. Of course land of that type cannot be held; at best it is only a few years until the soil has practically all been swept away, and the bare rock or clinging layer of subsoil sheds off from 75 to 90 per cent of the water that falls upon it. The rapid run-off from such hillsides often carries coarse rockfragments to the scant bottom lands that lie along the small streams and covers them with a deposit that destroys much of the little really productive land from which the would-be farmer endeavors to secure a living. In the last stage of this process there is no longer room in the V-shaped valley for cabins to stand; so they begin to maKe their appearance upon the steep slopes, hanging, one might almost say, between heaven and earth. The broader mountain valleys afford an excellent opportunity for successful farming. Here, if roads are such as will permit access to market, a permanent posperity is assured to the intelligent farmer who adapts his crops to production and marketing conditions. In these regions a permanent agriculture can and should be maintained. There are other valleys which may be described as border-line regions. In these a satisfactory standard of life cannot be maintained by farming alone but in many cases the income from the land may be supplemented by outside labor on the part of some members of the family to make living conditions fairly good. In other situations, where population has been pushed into the narrowest valleys, up the mountainsides and along narrow and almost barren ridges, the most abject poverty is inevitable. Such locations as these are veritable "slums" of the worst type, situations where human beings should not attempt to live, and from which they must be removed by some means if their conditions are to be materially improved. The attempt to make homes in the most unfavorable si,uations belongs to the present generation, in large measure. Not only has the better valley land been occupied, but in most cases the more favor able hillsides have been cleared long enough to be worn out or washed away. The conditions described above are especially characteristic of the plateau region of eastern and northeastern Kentucky, reaching across Tennessee and into northern Alabama, the plateau country is not so deeply or thickly cut by streams; here there are large areas of relatively level land that is suitable for a permanent agriculture, if proper methods are employed to maintain the fertility of the poor sandy soil. In this region roads are not hard to build and maintain. Some of these sections are quite rapidly developing adapted types of agriculture, as is the case in Cumberland County, Tennessee, where potato growing is taking on considerable proportions. The people of this section need roads, schools, farm and home demonstration agents. These agencies provided, a new type of agriculture can be developed, if an adapted type of state and national forestry can be introduced, in accordance with the plans to be proposed later. There is a third type of land in the Mountains that presents a problem of low production and poor living conditions, and must receive a special type of attention. This includes the limited ridge-areas that lie between rich valleys. These areas are found characteristically in the great Eastern Valley of the Tennessee, where numerous tributary streams have cut parallel valleys in the limestone foundations that are exposed by the erosion of sharply folded strata. The high ridges between the Powell, Clinch, and Holsten rivers are examples of this formation, and constitute a serious socal and economic problem. They often constitute parts of school districts and trading areas that extend up from the fertile valleys, but the economic status of "ridge folk" is so different from their neighbors of the lowlands that their peculiar needs are almost wholly neglected. Excellent trunk highways have been constructed over the main ridges, but the small ridges are often quite inaccessible, as are most of the larger ones that have good roads maintained across them. There are other problemareas in localities that in the main are prosperous farming regions. These are found typically in middle Tennessee, where poor ridges lie like islands surrounded by fertile lands. In Page J MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 some cases this ridge land is occupied almost wholly by negro population, and in others by whites who live in very poor homes, close to the economic borderline. The foregoing discussion of the situation that exists within the territory often thought of as the "Southern Mountains" has been presented in order to show those interested in the problem of the really needy people of the region that there is no general "mountain problem," but many problems that need solution. Eight years ago a week's ride over a Kentucky county lying near the heart of that state's mountain area showed the poverty of the ridge-land and the comfort and relative wealth of the border valleys. Level farms of such size as to provide a good economic basis for life were often seen, with `yell built homes and outbuildings. Some of these homes, even then when good roads were a dream, were provided with practically every modern convenience and the farm was run on up-to-date methods. Of course many things that could be produced in abundance could not be taken to market, but enough that could "walk to market" was sold to provide an adequate cash income. The broad-valley population of this county was well able to take care of itself, but the people of the narrow valleys and the ridges were too much for them to carry along toward a better standard of living. Then there have grown Lip within the mountains mining and industrial centers that are making radical changes in economic and social conditions. Many of the best people from the farms come to these industrial centers and take part in the new life on a fairly high level as employees, in private business and trades, or in professional positions. Put there are many who come as hangers-on to the outskirts of the mining camp or town, or who leave the family at "the head of the holler" while the menfolk pick up odd jobs, or engage in questionable occupations. The writer recalls one mining camp in particular, in eastern Kentucky, where the company had built good houses for employees, provided electric light, water and sewerage, built a good school, an excellent recreation and social building, and maintained the best of order. But around the outer limits of the camp there were dozens of shacks of one to three rooms that were occupied by families who had come from the creeks and ridges of the county. Their condition was worse than it had been at the creek-head. What has been said of the industrial development within the mountains implies, of course, that today there are thousands of families who are in the mountains but not of them, so that to take people by geographical areas and assume that they have common difficulties, desires, and needs is entirely erroneous. Mountain work needs to be very specific. To do anything effectively for the people of the general geographical region demands that the questions, where? who? and why? be asked and very definitely answered. Otherwise there will result confusion and inefficiency. The writer was reared in the thin-soiled, rolling plateau region of southern Kentucky, and has spent almost the entire time since he s,'arted in the work of education as teacher of "Ragged Ridge School" a few miles from his home, in working for and with the people of the Southern Mountains. It is his judgment that there are three distinct problems which those who would serve the Mountains today must attempt to solve. The first is to help those who are living upon, or can obtain, mountain land that can be made the basis for a satisfactory type of rural life, to develop such land in a manner suited to its nature and to the available markets. The second is to aid those who desire to leave the mountain farms, for agriculture in other localities, or to become a part of the industrial life of the mountains or of some other section to make the shift in the best possible manner and with the largest probability of success. The third, most difficult, and possibly the most important problem, is to get those out of the mountains who are attempting to live an agricultural life in regions entirely unfit. The first two problems are of vital importance, and demand much more careful attention than they are receiving, either by public or private agencies, but they will not be considered further in this article. From this point attention will be given to the problem of getting st),anded people ozrt of those mountain regions which cannot proz,ide a fai)ly satisfactory licing condition ftnnz the soil, anal which ottcr little it (my other ophorlaiaity fo), makint/ a liiin~~. January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE .ND WORK Page HERE'S THE HOVE 1t'T WHERE'S THE LIVING? The "branch-water people" or "cabin folks" as they are sometimes called, those residents of the mountains who have chosen to push into places that will provide them with scarcely an existence, much less a living, are not easily enticed from their unattractive habitations. The men go out to work and to purchase the meager supply of groceries and life-necessities, some of the children go irregularly to school, and the mothers on rare occasions go to a "preaching" when one chances to be held in a nearby schoolhouse or church. Life is narrow, hard, joyless, and stifles the higher tendencies in children who probably are also handicapped by having capacity much below average. Families are often large, and the overflow drifts out to become low-class labor along railroads, about mines, or in industrial centers near or far. To the south and east they are going to textile mills; the industrial plants of eastern Tennessee are utilizing many of them in the lower types of labor and machine operation. Put cabins and shanties in the "headwater country" are not often vacated, and frequently new ones, of rough boards more often than of logs, are built to congest further the "slums." Those who go out do not materially raise the level of life upon which they live, but there is one advantage that frequently accompanies the shift. The children are often brought within the reach of better schools, health conditions are sometimes improved, and there is a chance, at least, that they will be drawn into a Sunday school. All of these chances are increased for the better families that find a place somewhat above the lowest stratum of industry. Page G MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 There seems to be but one means by which these unfit regions of the mountains can be cleared of surplus population. That is by converting the territory which they occupy into the one thing for which it is fitted, forests. Few slopes were so steep as to prevent great trees growing upon them in the days before the white man's axe came upon the scene. Few acres were so poor that a profitable timber growth was not there to cover them with beauty, protect them from washing, and give them a profitable crop for the harvest. Nature's processes of surface-construction had gone on far enough to make ready for trees, but not for man's cultivated crops. The early loggers who floated vast numbers of logs down swollen streams, and the later mill men who used other devices for reaching the great trees that covered every slope, ruthlessly undid a process of nature, and brought poverty and ugliness where there were once wealth and beauty. And now man must reverse the process, bring back that which in his thoughtlessness or selfishness he destr~.yed. He must bring back forest conditions not merely for economic reasons, not merely that the hillsides may again produce a profitable crop, and the waters be held back for preserving streamflow instead of being turned loose in devastating flood. He must undo the process that the past century has carried out because it is destroying men, because it is providing breedingplaces for ignorance, for inferiority, for inefficiency, for lawlessness. But reforestation is no more a problem for the individual than is the development of a coal mine or a hydro-electric plant. Neither does it seem a source of wealth that is suited to private organizations of capital. It is preeminently a problem for society to handle through its governmental agencies. Our citizens and lawmakers are fairly committed to the task of developing state and national forests as sources of wealth and as means of controlling floods and probably droughts. But there has been no adequate recognition, it would seem, of the possibilities of making such forests great agencies in solving some of our most serious social problems. We are coming to see poverty more and more as a major social problem, and its eradication is one of the tasks that lie before organized society. Few are willing, in theory at least, to sit smugly back in the presence of human need and degradation and quote with an attitude of finality, "The poor ye always have with you." The mountain problem is, in the last analysis, a problem of poverty, and it must be handled as such. In so far as mountain regions are agricultural, their problems must be looked upon as outcomes of low-producing power of the soil, and low cash incomes due to inadequate facilities for transportation. Some land is fitted for cultivation, some for grazing, some for orchards, and some only for permanent forests. -And not only does the individual suffer who violates these laws of adaptability, but the social group of which that individual is a part suffers as well. The clearing of land, therefore, that is so steep that it will not afford a permanent source of profit for those who cultivate it is a vital social concern. It means economic loss for those who labor upon it, a waste of natural resources for the section concerned, serious increase of flood dangers for thousands living far away on the lower portions of the draining system, and mental, moral, and physical degredation for those who are held in poverty and isolation by the conditions under which they live. The problem, then, resolves itself into this How can society protect itself and those of its members who are held in the bondage of an inhospitable environment from the evils from which they suffer? Whatever other steps may be taken to solve the mountain problem, it is quite evident that an extensive forest system must be the ultimate solution for the worst areas. Three distinct types of forest control will be demanded to meet the three conditions that exist. These concern: large areas, embracing many hundreds of square miles of contiguous territory, a very large proportion of which is unsuited to any type of agriculture; medium sized areas largely represented by the parallel ridges of eastern Tennessee and western Virginia; and small areas, widely scattered over the northwestern plateau region, and some adjacent territory, not properly classified as a part of the highland region. January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 7 IN THE GREAT SMOKIES Page 8 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 19'3'1 The Large Forest Areas There has already been a fair start made toward converting the larger forest areas into government forests. There is a total of approximately ten thousand square miles of such forests at the present time in the seven states of the Southern Highland region. These forest areas are largest in North Carolina, which has approximately three thousand square miles, and smallest in Kentucky, where the total area is little more than fifty square miles. This total is probably not more than one-sixth to oneeighth of what it should be from the point of view of forest production, streamflow regulation, and social betterment. If state and federal government can be fully aroused to the threefold importance of this forestation problem, long-time bonds could be issued to provide the large amount of money requisite to put over the gigantic program. When such a step is taken, an expert commission should be provided to make a careful survey in each state to determine what large tracts should be taken over for forest areas. In many cases, as in eastern Kentucky where much of the land has been bought for the coal and gas that lies below the surface, provision should be made for recovering the title to the surface of the land without necessarily affecting the mineral rights, for which the land was bought. As practically every acre of these areas has been cut over, burned over, and partially cleared for farming, the first two or three decades would demand a gigantic program of improvement and planting.All nonprofitable farm lands within the forest area would, of course, be reforested, and the areas which justified the maintenance of a permanent agriculture would be leased, or left in the hands of the owners. There would be a large demand for unskilled labor, employing a large proportion of the present valley-head and ridge population. These people would be moved into the broader valleys where comfortable homes, gardens and orchards, schools and churches of a satisfactory quality, could be maintained at reasonable cost. Road construction would demand the labor of a large number, and in many places gardens and orchards could be developed with profit under--the direction of the con trolling governmental agencies, ;;fate and national. This phase of the forest work, dealing with large areas, would be an undertaking of first magnitude, but it would have three results of highest importance. It would restore to the United States an ample forest area, adequate, if properly maintained, to meet the needs of the nation for all time. It would so control the water run-off as to solve in large measure the flood problems of the Lower Mississippi and the smaller streams that find their way from the mountains to Gulf or Ocean, and greatly increase the potential hydro-electric power of the region by bringing about a more uniform stream-flow throughout the year. It would give a modern earning and buying power to a large number of people, probably half a million, who are practically negative factors in the markets of the nation because of their poverty; it would make of the region a reservoir for the production of a fine native population that would overflow into the lowland regions, near and far. The Medium Sued Forest Areas These regions, though possessing many of the characteristics of the large areas, would probably need to be handled in a different manner. A combination of state and county action would doubtless be most effective, with a small amount of Federal aid, possibly as much as one-fourth of the total initial and maintenance cost. This would be sufficient to warrant a large amount of Federal control so as to secure uniformity of forest management. The profits from these small areas would probably all go to the state and county governments, with the Federal aid justified by the stream arid flood control that would result. Corporation ownership for the purpose of holding mineral rights would be relatively of small importance in these regions, and because of the nearness 'to the :fanning communities, villages, and towns of the adjacent valleys, there would be little if an,,- need for residence communities within them. This would simplify the educational, religious arid social problems involved. January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 9 The Small Sized Forest Areas Scattered over the better parts of the plateau and foothill region, in the broad valley of eastern Tennessee, and in the rich agricultural section of middle Tennessee and other places throughout the more fully eroded sections of the Highlands, there are many small areas that are unfit for profitable agriculture, but are stripped of forests and lie wholly unproductive, except for a scant growth of poor trees, fire-scattered and stunted. Stranded folk live in these areas, however, and constitute a real part of the human problem of the mountains. A third type of forest development is probably needed for these regions. Such lands are often parts of farms adjoining them, but are wholly unprofitable. Forest production, and the abandonment of such unprofitable farming as is carried on within them, could probably be secured to the best advantage by exempting from tax all land that was being treated in an approved manner as a forest area, by furnishing free trees from the state nurseries for replanting, and by providing expert forest supervision. In addition to these means of stimulating the reforestation of small areas, it might be necessary to provide for longtime, low-interest loans with the ultimate timber production as security. Land banks loan on the security of farm production. Why not loan on the security of the most certain crop that the-Tand can produce, timber? The suggestions made above may seem visionary and impractical. They certainly are somewhat remote of attainment. But there is a problem of human life here that must be solved. Through ignorance great numbers of men and women, and children far in excess of adults, are living in the grip of an environ ment that is stifling, blighting, degrading. They are attempting to produce from a soil that lacks hundreds of thousands of years of being ready for agriculture. There is but one remedy: get them away from this environment, or at least from the economic phases of it. The remedy is practical. It will accomplish the humanitarian results desired, by a method that will be of great economic value to the nation. Our last virgin forests are disappearing. Stream-flow is being thrown out of balance as a result of an excessive head-water run-off. Vast amounts of hydro-electric power are being wasted because of the great difference between minimum and maximum flow of our rivers that have their sources in the Southern Highlands. An opportunity to develop a play ground of incalculable value is being neglected so long as we fail to keep hillsides and mountainsides covered with the beauty of forests, streams flowing evenly throughout the summer with pure, forestcleared water, and to construct highways into these regions which would make travel easy and attractive. Why should not these agencies that have, for the past half-century, been struggling to bring first-aid to those who need it in this region, cooperate vigorously and persistently until the voting and taxpaying public sees that a comprehensive scheme of government forests not only holds stupendous financial value for the country, but also will provide a means of paying a debt we owe to those of our own blood and ideals who are now prevented from enjoying the blessings of life which should be theirs and who are kept from contributing to society that which, given an opportunity, they are able to contribute? It is a huge task, but America today is able to attempt it and accomplish it if shown the way. Can not the light be turned on, and the way made plain? Page lU MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 School For Workers Who Have Moved From Mountain to Mill LOUISE LEONARD MCLAREN "In a log cabin in the mountains of Tennessee my mother's parents lived. They had three sons and one daughter. They cooked their food in iron pots in the fire place, and baked their bread in an iron oven with a lid covered over in fire coals. They raised vegetables and sold to the store for things that they needed. They wove their cloth and made their clothes by hand. For cleaning [washing] clothes they had a big block sawed out of a large tree. They wet their clothes in hot water and then rubbed home-made soap on them and then laid them on the block of wood about three feet high and batted them hard with a big stick made like a paddle for guiding a boat." So wrote a girl twenty-five years of age in her autobiography prepared for an assignment in the English course at Southern Summer School for Women Workers in Industry, at Arden, North Carolina, last summer. Like most of the other factory workers who have attended a summer session of this school, which was started in 1927, she was born on a farm, and although now employed in industry she has the traditions of the agricultural South. The romantic appeal of the life and privations of the southern highlander has been felt by most Americans the country over. Relatively contemporary experiences like :those described in this autobiography recall those of the forefathers who came on the Mayflower, or later boats of the seventeenth or eighteenth century, and they arouse interest and sympathy and a desire to help these people up to "modern standards." The rank and file of industrial workers in the textile, tobacco, and other factories of the South, from Maryland to Alabama, from Kentucky to Florida, are either from tenant farms or from the mountains. Ma:=.y of them are of the same stock as the mountain people, but they have moved on into the mill villages and small industrial cities at the call of the machine. As soon as the highlander becomes an industrial worker, however, he no longer stands for the romantic life of our forefathers, but he be comes a "Problem"; and the sympathy and kinship felt for him on the part of the average American outside the mountains are likely to vanish under the pressure of economic interest and class feeling. To those who really appreciate the worth of this native stock and who want it to make its full contribution to American life, two movements should make an equally strong appeal: (1) that which is directed towards improvement of farming in the South, and consequently in the standard of living of agricultural workers-such efforts as are represented by the John C. Campbell Folk School at Brasstown, North Carolina; and (2) the movement towards improvement in conditions surrounding the work in industry, which will make for more opportunity for abundant life among thousands of industrial workers who a decade or two ago were working hillside farms in the southern mountains. A few farmers' families, disillusioned by the lack of chance for education, freedom, and life in the mill town, are finding their way back to the country; yet we know that the vast majority must stay in industry-that the work of running machines is a permanent part of our civilization, and that we cannot "turn back history" to return to the "good old days" of hand work but must make adjustment to this change which will allow a chance for the good life to the worker in a factory. The Southern Summer School for Women Workers in Industry is an effort to meet the educational needs of mountain women "once removed" from the country, just as mountain schools exist to meet the needs of people still living in the highlands. As the Campbell School educates families of farmers to a better life by helping them to understand and improve their own economic environment, so the Southern Summer School relates the content of its courses to the experience of workers in industry. Both schools teach adults and thus help to reach the early ideal of the public school January, 1931 MOUN'T'AIN LIFE AND WORK Page 11 which our public school system has not been able to realize-an opportunity for education for all of the people all of the time. The upheaval in the southern textile industry during the past two years has brought to public attention the fact that great numbers of workers are underpaid and overworked. The ,job that beckoned to the hillside farmer offers work under such bad conditions that it is detrimental to the health of himself, his wife and his children. Although it may offer more money, this is soon eaten up by higher cost of living in mill villages. The welfare of the worker is the last consideration under the present economic system. As Stuart Chase writes in Men and Machines, "Engines did not come to save men the brutality of dull labor, to help an Emperor build an imperial city, to irrigate and replenish waste lands-they came because English traders wanted to increase their profits by making cheaper cotton to sell abroad. The human values, such as they are, had ~'to enter by the back door, and despite much lofty talk to the contrary, this is the route which they still follow." Bad industrial conditions arouse a certain amount of public indignation. Written protests were made last year in the form of resolutions by southern church bodies; in two states, after many of these liberties had been violated in industrial disputes, large groups of citizens issued statements concerning the civil liberties of workers; and women's organizations and others pressed on to secure social laws which will protect child laborers, shorten the hours of work for women workers, etc. This is all to the good, but history does not indicate that indus-trial conditions have ever been fundamentally improved by these methods alone. The South is not the first section to go through the throes of the industrial revolution. Other countries and sections of our country have gone through the same cycle: application of machine to manufacture; exploitation of farmers who, failing to make a good living on the farm and not realizing what the system does to human life, have heralded the factory as a saviour; revolt of workers after appeals to employers have failed-strikes-use of violence-industrial warfare. As we write, such warfare is going on in the State of Virginia bringing untold suffering to fifteen thousand persons, and the end is not yet. Since economic history repeats itself, the workers themselves are bound to have a large share in the solution of their own problems, and in the South, as in Europe and New England where the industrial revolution came eai tier, there is great need for such education as will prepare them to carry their responsibilities as industrial citizens. Improvements in machinery have almost done away with the need for vocational educacation in textile, tobacco, and other large-scale industries employing thousands of men and women. The majority of factory workers can learn their particular operations in a few days or weeks at the machine. But the same improvements in machinery which have removed necessi.'y for vocational training, have created so many human problems that the need of another kind of education of workers has become more and more urgent. The term "workers' education" has been given to a kind of non-vocational education of adult industrial workers in Europe and in the United States. It does not take operatives out of industry permanently but sends them back to their factory jobs better prepared to be effective members of their group of workers and of the community. The visitor at Oxford University is taken to see Ruskin College, unique in England and in the world as that part of a university which is devoted exclusively to the education of industrial workers. Organized in 1899 under the inspiration of American educators, Mr. and Mrs. Vrooman and Charles Beard, "the college was intended to provide a full year, and in some cases two, of whole-time residential study of working men on lines that would equip them for fuller service to the cause of labour, whether industrially, politically, or socially." However, the main activities of what is known as the Worker's Educational Movement in England are to be found in local classes and nonresidential labor colleges of Great Britain. A total of over 62,000 members of such classes was reported for 1927-28, either affiliated with the Worker's Education Association sponsoring education for workers with the general aims of Page 12 MOUNTAIN Lib'E AND WORK January, 1931 ENTIRE SCHOOL, ARDEN, N. C., SUIVIVIER 19:;0 Ruskin College, or affiliated with the National Council of Labour Colleges. In the United States there is no institution similar to Ruskin College. The various large divisions of the labor movement sponsor worker's classes and non-resident colleges in large cities, as does the Worker's Education Pureau of the American Federation of Labor. Prookwood Labor College, at Katonah, New York, for men and women, the Vineyard Shore School for Women Workers, at West Park, New York, and Commonwealth College, at Mena, Arkansas, are the three resident winter schools for workers in this country. The summer school for women workers, affiliated with a college or university, is a unique form of worker's education in this country. Pryn Mawr College was the first to offer its campus for the use of such a school, in 1921. Since that time hundreds of industrial women from all over the country have ma'riculated there for the summer session of eight weeks. From the beginning, this school has been under the joint auspices of college women and women labor leaders. It is the only summer school of its kind that is national in scope, and the only one that offers a second-year course. In 1925 the University of Wisconsin included a unit of worker's education in its large summer school. The aims and course of this school are similar to those at Bryn Mawr. The school is administered by the State University and it is co-educational. Since 1927 Barnard College has offered a course for women work January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 13 er s of metropolitan New York, and in the same year the Southern Summer School for Women Workers in Industry was started, holding its first session at Sweet Briar College. This School is an attempt on the part of a committee of southern educators and workers to meet the need for workers' education existing among southern women in industry. The 1930 session was held at Arden, North Carolina, where the committee rented campus and equipment of a boys' school for six weeks in July and August. Here in the mountains, industrial women found an ideal place in which to study industry and its problems and discuss them with their fellow sL'udents and teachers. They found time not only for work but for play of a beneficial nature, on the tennis court or baseball field, hiking over the mountains or swimming in a nearby pool. Students came from eleven industries in nine states. There was a girl who had gone to work in a Georgia cotton mill at the age of eleven (she was barely eighteen when she came to Summer School.) Another had lived all of her life in a village in "East Tennessee" and had only known what a modern factory can be like since the rayon industry came to Elizabethton in 1924. There were garment workers from Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia and Maryland, girls from tobacco and shoe factories in North Carolina and Virginia, and textile workers from most of the states. Between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five, they represented a great variety of industrial experience. One student had been working twentyone years. The faculty is made up of men and women who teach at college or university in the winter. They are all students of the social sciences, whatever their particular subject, and they are skilled in the ability to help workers learn what they want to know of economics, industrial history, labor problems, English composition, public speaking and dramatics. The method is that of progressive education. Starting with the common interest of all members of the class-their own ,jobs in factoriesthey discuss them with the college instructor in economics and with each other. From others, in the class, a weaver in a textile mill-cotton, silk or rayon-learns something of the process es of the work of fellow students who may roll cigars, operate a machine in a cigarette factory, make overalls, or make candy. In their own group they typify the whole scope of women's work in industry in the South. They learn something of basic industries in present day America-of the organization of big business, of the problem of production and distribution of goods. They discover the part labor plays in this economic sys'em and begin to see where they fit into the national and international economic picture. The second discussion each morning is with a teacher of English, but there is no distinct break in the thread of thought. Teachers do not use the "subject approach." Having left school at an early age, these worker students recognize the need of writing simply, of speaking clearly before their clubs or trade unions back home; so they apply themselves to learn English as a tool. They choose topics for themes or speeches from among the things that interest them, and their subjects are usually related to their lives as workers. Therefore, the work in "English class" is about subjects of economic importance. In dramatics class they discuss dramatic situations in their common experience, situations arising, as a rule, out of their work life either on the farm or in the factory. With the dramatics director, who has great skill in editing their work, they create plays depicting the most dramatic situations of their group life, such as the picket line at Marion, or the employment office in a southern city. These plays have both artistic and educational value. Drawn from real life, as they are, they are an addition to the folk literature of the South. Two different years the class has also presented well-known folk plays: "Peggy-A Tragedy of a Tenant Farmer's Life", by Harold Williamson, and "Job's Kinfolk" by Loretta Carroll Bailey. Each day the whole group has an hour of exercise under supervision of a physical director. Their health education is .furthered by individual corrective work suggested by the director after consultation with the medical examiner, who gives advice at the beginning and checks results at the end of the summer. Talks on personal and social hygiene and right Page 14 MOUN'CAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 Dormitories at Christ School, Arden, where the Southern Summer School Will Hold Its Fifth Session in 1931 health habits prepare students to hold to physical gain made during the six weeks in an environment conducive to good health, offering as it does proper food, exercise, sleep and balanced rations of study and recreation. Nor is it only in this educational work with a few southern industrial women each summer that the Southern Summer School does its bit toward the ultimate solution of industrial problems in the South. The School aims to be the center of discussion of these problems by liberals and laborites of this section. For the past three years a labor conference has brought together outstanding leaders in the labor movement of the southern states for a week-end. Such a meeting serves two purposes, that of providing a discussion center for labor union leaders and that of bringing Summer School students in touch with the best leadership of that movement. Another week-end there was a gathering of men and women who though outside the labor movement, are deeply interested in labor and social progress. This small group of "liberals" met with the students. They heard first a survey of social trends in the South, by a southern economist, Dr. Lois MacDonald, author of "Southern Mill Hills," who is an instructor in economics at New York University, and also at the Southern Summer School. Both guests and students took part in the discussion. Then such ways of meeting problems as social legislation and worker's education were presented (1) by Miss Ruth Scandrett of the State Child We] January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 15 fare Department of Alabama, and (2) by Mr. Tom Tippett of Brookwood Labor College. Such a conference has been proposed for mountain social workers during the summer session at Arden in 1931. Here those who are working on the solution of economic and social problems of southern highlanders could meet with a group comprising students, faculty and committee of the Summer School especially interested in the solution of problems of industrial workers. Exchange of experience would be of value to all: To the Summer School group it would mean better understanding of the progress made in agricultural methods and in improvement of life in the mountains, while to the mountain social worker such an informal conference should mean new knowledge of the present situation in southern industry, and of economic conditions facing mountain people when they move to the industrial town. Expenses for such a week-end meeting would not be over three dollars for a two-day conference. While the development of the Worker's Education movement in the United States has taken the form of summer and winter resident schools instead of the evening classes so popular in England, leaders in the movement recognize the necessity of workers' education in local communities for the numbers of men and women who can't leave home and job even for a short time. Such classes and evening labor schools sponsored by the labor movement in large cities throughout the country have for one reason or another decreased in size and in influence since they were started ten years ago. Since there is no labor night school south of Baltimore and since no labor agency is promoting classes in the South, the Southern Summer School is cooperating with local committees sponsoring classes and occasionally even sending a member of the faculty in to teach a six weeks' course in Economics in places where no local teacher in available. Labor plays will be put on by the Summer School director of dramatics this winter in cooperation with local labor groups. This is one of the most effective forms of workers' education for both caste and audience. From the winter office of the Southern Summer School, at Linthicum Heights, Maryland, material for use in these classes is sent out. There is also a small collection of books circulating among former students who want to go on with their reading and who often have access to no library at home. These beginnings of workers' education are not spectacular. Comparatively few workers the country over are 'affected, so far, and many working men and women have probably never even heard of the movement. Yet it is obvious even to many of them that the old education is inadequate to their needs in an age dominated by the machine. So this new movement is important out of all proportion to the present size and strength, and the classes and schools embraced by it may be expected to increase in number and to have a steadily growing influence upon the socializing and humanizing of modern industrial society. RECOLLECTIONS OF TWENTY YEARS EDWARD W. HUGHES After a long and active life spent among all sorts and conditions of men, a life which included several years among the sailor and fisher folk of the salt and fresh waters, slum folk and prison folk in the dense centers, and much time spent among the lumbermen and the Indians, one could hardly imagine that experiences among the people of the Mountains would offer anything for astonishment. But the old adage that "truth is stranger than fiction" is still true, and I found it so on many occasions. Hearing my own language on every side I was struck with surprise at being addressed as a "furriner" ; I resented the imputation. I assured them that I came from the old land where their forbears were born; that even their words of "poke" and "tote" were familiar, being still in use in many parts of the English Page 16 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 counties; but it was no use. Finally I realized that they meant I was not a mountaineer, that I did not belong to that particular locality. But their friendly hospitality soon made me feel at home; as I had come to stay, I wanted to be received, if not with open arms, at least with some show of friendliness. They did receive me, and the fact that I am still among these people is an evidence that we are agreeing on many things. Again I was struck with the peculiar custom of calling a man to one side for a confidential chat, the two often taking the middle of the roadway for it. There, sqatting on their heels, sometimes chewing straws and at other times whittling a piece of wood, they would spend a half hour or more. I thought that the most serious questions were being discussed and in a most confidential way. I soon learned differently. Then there was the tremendous labor which the housewives took on themselves in preparing the food: hot bread three times a day, instead of cold bread baked a day or two previously, was the universal rule. The women folk's often standing and waiting on the men folk until all were finished was not what I had been accustomed to except in the Indian camps. It seemed to show little regard for the good wives and daughters. It was not long before I learned that the women folk desired it to be so, for they wanted to eat their own meal in peace without the constant jumping up from the table which any other plan would have demanded. It was no lack of courtesy on the part of the men folk but a convenience all around. Some of the girls' names caught my attention: "Lovely Marion" and "Dismal" were too great a contrast. The first I associated with the conduct or practice of the Pilgrim Fathers; the other with the Dismal Swamp. But "dismal" is not an unpleasant word when disassociated from Ks meaning as found in the dictionary; many small rivers bear the name, and as the clear sparkling water ripples over shiny pebbles and falls in delightful cascades over the rocky bed or flows smoothly through the meadow flats and under the green branches of noble trees, "Dismal" sounds pleasant indeed, for it has pleasant memories and associations. Every people develop mannerisms and habits peculiar to their conditions of life, the outgrowth of their experience, and these open a door for us to pass in and learn better what their ideas on many subjects may be. Here let me say that no reflection upon any of them for these manners or habits is to be assumed. When these people eat quickly, it is only that they may get busy about more important things. I can't think of anything which would be more galling to them than to have to sit down at a banquet where a several course meal is being enjoyed by the guests of a friendly host and hostess. The terrible waste of time would be the thought first to arise. So different is life to them. As my life among these people was intended to help them develop a larger growth in the enjoyment of their religion, my study of them has been along this line. Their reaction to preaching of their own ministers, their grasp and understanding of the Bible, and their response to the appeal for a finer manhood along the lines of three-fold gospel wherein body, soul and spirit were equally concerned, were ever in mind. The active outdoor life led by every one was always conducive to a strong healthy body; and not until the "flu" epidemic during the war period did I learn that there was a real need of instruction regarding infection, contagion, fresh air, frequent bathing of the whole body, and the use of such preventive measures in combating disease as medical science has brought to light. As I passed on to others the information given us by the doctors of the value of common baking soda as a preventive of the "flu," I was met with two arguments: that soda is so cheap and common that it could not have any merit; and that if God wills that one should have sickness there is no use in trying to get away from God's purposes. Naturally this opened the way for a general argument on religious topics, of which most of the men are very fond. They seemed to feel that not only was their interpretation of the Good Book right, but that any one who differed could not be right; this attitude was only overcome by urging that they should approach any subject which was new with an open mind. It was pitiful, at times, to find children with "reel" feet or some other malformation of the January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 17 limbs left to grow up without any rectification of the trouble, because God made him or her so and one should not try to change what God has done. Stressing the fact that the Lord Himself healed the sick who were brought to Him and sent His disciples out on the same healing mission and pointing out that many doctors are Christian men who always pray for God's guidance and help in their work, have helped to bring many to the point where the doctor is looked upon as the messenger of Christ and an angel of mercy, and better bodies have resulted. The mission school of the Church has been one of the greatest influences in the lives of these people, for the help given has taught them that character building is the great object of education. The mind is not the only thing developed through the education that is given, but the social life of the whole community is raised. The strong individualism which is so decided and so commendable among them is turned from selfishness and exclusiveness into leadership of the finest kind. A community needed a road improved so that the mail carrier could use an automobile for his rounds, yet one and all refused to help because they used only a horse; if anyone needed a better or different kind of road he could make it for himself. A little tactful talk on the advantage of getting produce to market easier and quicker, and the grant of some money to pay for labor when money was very much needed, soon brought about a plan of cooperation that gave the mail carrier a road that gladdened his heart and helped everyone. Peside the Bible, the catalogues of the great departmental stores have been a constant source of information and instruction. Do other folk find those things as useful as they say in the book? is a question often asked. "Mam and Pop never had any use for such things but I 'low as they look like they might be good." The great war and the opening of what is called by the people of the mountains "public works" have been, next to the mission schools, factors in influencing the life of these people. When the young men were being drafted for the war many of them felt they were going to certain death. It was worse than being con demned by the judge in open court to life imprisonmen'. Very few knew what the war was about. Mothers, sweethearts, and wives hung on the necks of their men to hold them back. They could not say goodbye. What wonder that so many broke away from the training camps to return home and see for themselves that their dear ones were not dead? It was not intended for desertion. The home folk needed them. To those who knew or thought they knew, what the war was about, the pitiful thing about this going away was the sure knowledge that no boy so going would come back and be the same as he was before. All life would be changed for him. Development would take place with rapid strides. His school would be the world, and into the few short, or long, years would be crowded a veritable lifetime of tremendous experiences. Put what about the women left at home, eating their hearts out with suffering and longing? Would they change? Could they change so that they could keep pace with their men folk who would unconsciously expect to see development, progress everywhere? Their minds must be opened. They must grow so their men would appreciate them the more on their return. To this end the workers in the various missions bent their energies, and I think it can be truthfully said that they accomplished this task. Men found their women measuring up to them in many fine ways. This made the war a great influence in their lives. A strong feature in the character of the mountain people that impressed me very much is the initiative which they all possess. Any emergency will find them ready with an expedient that answers so well that it almost becomes an invention. Along with this is an admiration for beautiijul things. Going into their homes I have found such spirit as must have moved in the minds of the great artists of the world. It is shown not in the way of painting or sculpture so much as in the manufacture of beautiful four-poster bedsteads out of walnut, cherry or some other artistic wood. I met one man who would not make anything in oak because it was not an artistic wood, to his mind. Fine desks, center tables, dining tables and chairs are the evidences in many homes that some one with a love of the beauti Page 18 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 ful lives there. To encourage them in this line of work is one of my desires. People cannot be far from God when they love beautiful things. One man and his wife, talking as we sat in their home one evening, told me that at one time they knew nothing of what lay beyond the mountains that they could see from their door. "Now," he said, "we know people in Washington, Norfolk, Philadelphia and other places; and they know its." I wish I could help you to see the satisfaction with which he said the last four words. He felt that life was worth living because of that acquaintance. I must speak of one sad feature in the lives of these people, because it is so serious and also because it can be remedied-but not without the help of others than themselves. Whether from the lack of education during several generations, from marriage with those closely related by blood, or from whatever cause, there are several cases of children who are not able to take an education out of books. Yet for these mountain people there are but few institutions where such children can be taught the things they are able to learn and so become useful members of society. The government of each state has an institution where epileptics can be cared for, but the children I have in mind are not so afflicted. They can take an education up to the fourth and fifth grades but don't want to go beyond. What is needed is an institution where they can be taught handicrafts. I have in mind a boy afflicted with drooping lids who attended a mission school for several years, making no progress. By good fortune a manual instructor was asked to go to that school and teach carpenter work. This lad took to it like a duck to water. He was not satisfied just to nail one board on another, but wanted -to do his work right; every joint must be tight, every corner square. He loved his work so much that he never wanted to quit, and better still, it helped him to learn in his classes so that the book knowledge which before meant nothing was given a meaning that appealed to him. He made progress, advancing two grades beyond what it had been thought he was capable of doing. Public work in the coal fields is not of a constructive sort, as a rule. Because of this the managers of such works try to create a desire for gardens and other uplifting things among their employees. The Scout movement among the boys and a somewhat similar movement for the girls help to correct this destructive influence. The same idea must govern in the management of the children who cannot learn from books. All the work done must be constructive; ,just as men who are constantly engaged in wrecking buildings have a tendency to get careless, while the men who build get careful, so it is with children. With the assistance of a few friends, a farm of 160 acres has been bought in Tazewell county, Virginia, for the purpose of offering a home to those boys and girls who require special attention to learn handicrafts and supplement their book knowledge. Putting it plainly, why should children who are called-for the want of a better term-mentally deficient, be required to attend the public schools of the state, staying in the same grade for two or three years? Handicapped themselves, they handicap others by their presence. Yet the state makes no effort to improve things. The farm in Tazewell is intended to help in this; as soon as funds will allow, the necessary buildings will be erected and work begun. In addition to dairying, general farming, gardening under glass as well as in the open, the raising of pet stock, the keeping of bees, carpenter work, weaving, chickenraising, fruit growing, canning, and a score of other features will help in teaching the children. The County has a two-room school adjacent to the farm where all can go who are qualified, and a church near by will provide the religious instruction and opportunity for worship which is so bound up with the desires of these mountain people to honour God in the consecration of their lives to His cause. A quarter of a lifetime has been spent in these regions. Looking over my records I see that I have preached in nearly two hundred separate places of worship to different congregations. The visits made have been more than ten thousand in a territory covering more than five thousand square miles; yet I know so little about the mountain people. Of one thing I am more than proud, they call me their friend -and that is what I want to continue to be to January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 19 the thousands with whom I am very intimately acquainted. These musings over the recollections of nearly twenty years are being written BOOKS I'm working for the fotched-on women now; Skelping out weeds and rocks from posy-beds, Running out hawgs off'n the tater-patch, Puttering here and there about the place. Quare the high hopes a body sets out with, And ends with weeding women's garden-truck! Not that I aim to quarrel at my life, We mostly chose the things that suit us best. WhaL' did I choose? Living along o' Books, Up on the ridge-peak where a man has room. My grandsir had a name along the creek, "Most knowenest". He had a shelf of books. Afore I knew to read, my mind had been Magicked with those ole books. Masterful deeds And little sleepy rhymes grandsir would read, And allus finish, "Soon they'll be for you." I riccollect the winter when I larned. Pewmony-fever sarved him mighty hard, And loosed his grip. One night they thought he'd gone, And Maw had raised the wailing for the dead. But Granny pushed me forrards quick, and called, "Come back here Sam, and larn young Sam to read." He came, too. That might be the reason why Books never seemed like common things to me. by request. Just let me say in closing this article that the mountain people are lovable and most appreciative of every little kindness. TWO POEMS ANN COBB Well, here I be, ending as I began. Manoevering the soil a body gets A sight o' time in patches. Ef you hev' A book in pocket you can read a spell. Hain't hit a sight to see though, how some folks Fritter their days away? These women now! One of 'em argufied with me today. Says she, in a down-headed sort of way, `Of making many books there is no end!' Why that's the very Word I glory in! So many things there be that pass away, Rulers and cities, trees and rosybuds, Kinfolks and friends, and last, a body's self. Thank God we've Scripter-promise for the Books THE HOUND Good ole hound! Never missed a possum, Nor dropped a trail. Any thing I'd set ye Ye'd not fail. And now ye're gravebound Like me. We'll sit around The fire and see One more Aprile bloom. Maybe. Page 20 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 THE FUTURE OF THE MOUNTAIN HOME W. S. ANDERSON "Why," inquires the outsider visiting the rather isolated mountain community, "does any one live here?" One reason for having a home in such a section is that it is less expensive than the home maintained in the city or on good farm land. The material out of which the house may be built can often be obtained from the surrounding land, and while the house made of such material is rustic in appearance and lacks modern conveniences and often ordinary comfort, it still affords a shelter, at very little expense. Its upkeep requires, or at least receives, very little outlay. No insurance is carried, as a rule, on the house or its contents; taxes are almost negligible. Another reason for the mountain home is that land is very cheap-it costs almost nothing. It is true that in most cases it has very little productive capacity, but little patches can be cultivated which give at least bread for the family. The amount of labor that it requires to produce crops is enormous compared to the crop income, but it is not considered in the cost of production of the crops. There is no use for labor outside of the farm operations, and so it matters little if the time is spent in hand work on the mountain sides in order to raise corn for subsistence. With certain people another reason for the isola'ed home is the solitude. It gives the family an opportunity of isolating itself from civilization and from modern industry and permits it to live largely in the primitive manner of many generations ago. Such a condition ought not to appeal to anyone, but still we do have men and women who prefer and seek such solitude. The modern trend of activities in the progressive agricultural sections of America is away from harsh conditions. Instead of looking on the isolated home as a sacred place to which the family is bound by all sorts of sentimental ties, a generation is coming on of young people who value the soil for its ability to produce. If it is too steep, too rocky, too much eroded to be profitable they refuse to cultivate it. Each plot of land or farm is evaluated solely on its productive possibilities and is condemned as useless when it fails to meet the modern requirements in production. The last two decades in the United States have seen the abandonment of hundreds of thousands of country homes and so called farm lands. Frankly, we are recognizing the fact that land does not have a sentimental value and that no one is under any obligation whatever to own it, to cultivate it, or to spend anything upon it, if it will not give a reasonable return for the time and money bestowed upon it. There is in the country too much rich land awaiting cultivation for families to eke out an existence on infertile soils. For over half a century churches, schools, and agricultural colleges have tried to work out a method of cultivation which would give a reasonable living to men whose homes are in the mountain sections of America and especially in the mountain sections of the eastern United States. Vast sums of money have been spent in making these investigations and in carrying on experimental work. The sum total of the findings is to the effect that vast reaches of mountain territory can never be made suitable for human habitation. The schools have found that as soon as they train the young people to appreciate even the elementary comforts of life which require an income beyond that to be obtained by the cultivation of mountain land these young people refuse to return to their homes to attempt to make a living as their fathers and mothers have tried to do. At first our schools tried to counteract this natural impulse of students. They tried so to arrange their courses and to bring such pressure to bear upon the students that they would feel under obligation to return to their own communities in order to better living conditions there. But such efforts were unavailing. The mountain boys and girls knew only too well that economic conditions could not be improved, and steadily they have refused, and have been justified in refusing, to go back and attempt January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 21 to make a living in regions totally unfit for agricultural purposes. In the last few years churches and schools have recognized the right of these young people to go where they choose to go, and now encourage them to engage in congenial work wherever it can be found. In fact it is now recognized by our faculties that the best thing the school can do for mountain boys and girls is to make them dissatisfied with the harsh conditions under which they have been reared and inspire them to go where congenial employment can be obtained and where normal life can be lived. In very recent years the nation as a whole has awakened to its responsibility. In conjunction with the state governments efforts are being made to establish vast reforestation projects in the Appalachian mountains. This is one solution to the problem. It will of course very greatly lessen the population of the sections reforested. Those who remain can be connected with the management of the reforestation project and can be afforded in this way sufficient income for comfortable homes. Another use that can be made of some sections of mountain farms is to concentrate them into large areas and to use these consolidated farms for grazing purposes. This, however, requires capital and a great deal of it. It would also require an expert cattleman to manage the enterprise. There is little hope that this concentration will be effective in any great degree until the demand for beef cattle is much greater than that demand promises to be in the next decade or two. On a small scale it has been going on for a number of years. Certain mountain sides are well adapted to grasses which afford good grazing. A few thrifty farmers and cattle dealers in every mountain county concentrate their efforts on such lands. They use them for grazing only. They winter the cattle on grain and roughage produced on "bottom" land or else ship out the cattle to be wintered in cattle feeding territory. It may seem ruthless to advocate the depopulation of areas that have been settled for a century or more and whose present inhabitants in many cases are descendants of the original settlers, but it is not as ruthless as it would appear upon the surface. There is no objection whatever to enterprising descendants of pioneer farmers maintaining their ancestral lands, if they have lands that are worth while, lands that will give them an income so that they can maintain their homes and properly educate their children. There will always be those enterprising people that have the best lands, river and creek bottoms and well sodded uplands, who have business acumen properly to cultivate and graze their lands so that their standard of living is equal to that of any prosperous farmer. No one would for a moment advocate bringing any pressure 'to bear upon or even make a suggestion to this type of mountain man. He is perfectly able to take care of himself and his family. He needs no advice fi om the outside. If he wants any information he knows where to get it and how to get it, and what is more, he gets it. The family, however, that arouses sympathy is the one that is barely exisiting on a mountain side, surrounded by other families in the same poverty-stricken condition. All of them so poor that they do not realize their poverty. They do not realize the primitive conditions under which they are living. They do not seem to know that us a neighborhood they have no right to rear their children in such an atmosphere of poverty and ignorance. It is neighborhoods of this character which the school and the church cannot reach and benefit. The meager farm lands take the time and energy of the family and give back almost nothing in return for that energy. Modern agriculture can do nothing for them. It has no message of help or consolation. If advisors who visit them are conscientious and honest they are compelled to tell them that their situation is hopeless, that the only solution is the abandoning of such lands and going where nature has dealt more kindly with the soil. This writer knows from personal experience that the more poverty-stricken the families are, the more difficult it is to get them to break away and to seek better economic conditions. They are afraid. They realize that they know nothing of the modern methods of farm production, they are afraid to get out and meet strangers. They of course have no resources Page 22 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 to enable them to set themselves up in a new place, and they reply, "I might not get by out there and I know I can get by here." This writer believes firmly that the time has come for all those who are interested in the underprivileged classes of the Appalachian mountains to look at the matter frankly and to advocate openly the abandonment of the most infertile soil, even though it means the complete desolation of entire neighborhoods. Our reforestation project should bring about this result in many of the remoter sections. If the families could be persuaded to go away to some other community, it is possible that the farms can in some cases at least be consolidated into larger areas and men of means take them over. It would, however, be a real benefit to many of our states if the more infertile of the abandoned lands were allowed to reforest themselves. The older members of families cannot easily be persuaded to leave the only home or community they have ever known. Perhaps it would be cruel to bring great pressure to bear to cause them to pull away from a lifetime association. There can be no harm done by pointing to young people from the very beginning of their training to a preparation which will fit them for participation in the usual activities of prosperous communities. What has been said applies of course to those areas unaffected by industrial development which follows in the wake of the railroads and perhaps to less extent in the wake of the thoroughfares that are gradually penetrating our mountain districts. Wherever there is a center of population due to coal mining, lumber mills, cotton or silk manufacturing, there will be an area of farm lands that can be used profitably to supply vegetables, berries, poultry, and dairy products demanded by industrial centers. Naturally, owners of lands in touch with developments of this character will be able to take care of themselves, and thus comes a solution of the problem of mountain agriculture as far as they are concerned. But it must be remembered that only a comparatively small part of our mountain population can ever be brought so in contact with the industrial development that they can find sufficient income by raising things that have a ready sale. Perhaps more than onehalf the population of the Appalachian Mountain region are underprivileged because of the infertility of the soil on which they live. It is this half, or whatever proportion it may be, that has become such a great social problem. It is because they live on lands so remote from industrial centers that doctors, teachers, preachers, and social leaders cannot reach them. They themselves do not have the initiative or the ability to solve the problem by emigration. They make the same kind of a social problem for the rural section that the habitual slum peoples make for our cities. The one step that is important for all agencies interested in the underprivileged of mountain regions is to agree that by agriculture no adequate income can be obtained by them. Let this fact have the widest publicity. If all concerned can agree on this statement other plans can be developed that may be helpful. It seems to be time to recognize the change that has taken place on many of the more accessible mountain streams. The descendants of the early settlers have long ago gone on to more fertile regions. If any are left they are the less talented or less ambitious. For a half century some of these "unknown" streams have gradually been peopled by men who were seeking seclusion. Often the traveler made permanent abode and married whoever was near at hand. Through this process there has been a complete change of social sentiment and ideals. One result has been that in many streams no pioneer blood with its sturdy ideas of virtue are left. Here we find a new type of "mountaineer," one seeking refuge for a purpose. His children will not take kindly to school or church. When legal authorities and charitable organizations learn how to control and uplift this type of human being in cities, then we can hope for a solution in our mountain regions where such people dwell. It should be said that no more severe critics of this new type can be found than are the sturdy, honest, industrious people who are often compelled to live in neighborhoods close to them. January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 2 3 Enough has been said to indicate that in the vast stretches of mountain territory there are great varieties of peoples and of problems. No statements of economic or social conditions will apply to all or to any very great part of the territory. In the last analysis it comes down to a neighborhood problem. A solution for one neighborhood is by no means the right solution for other neighborhoods. Perhaps we should go one step farther and say that improvement, if made, will have to be made by families or even individuals of families. BACK OF YESTERDAY HELEN H. DINGMAN It is refreshing in these days of complex living to take a trail that leads us back of yesterday to share for a while the simpler lives of our forefathers. Usually we are too busy to leave the highways; we speed along in highpowered cars, our great anxiety being to see how much space we can cover in a limited amount of time, and in our haste we miss the little by-paths that would guide us into some of the richest and most satisfying experiences. The little path I took left the state highway near a concrete bridge, still very startling in its newness, and meandered across a "branch" to an old-fashioned log house. It was within sound of the noisy cut-outs of passing trucks and buses, but it seemed remote from all they represented. Inside, my host and hostess, long past their three score years and ten, sat before the open fireplace cutting pumpkin rings and stringing them on lines to dry for later use. "Not that we'll ever be able to eat them all, but we still like to stick to our old ways, and it seems like the girls [the two grown daughters who do the housekeeping] ,jest like to fuss with 'em. In the spring we'll eat a mess or two cooked with good fat meat and we'll share with the neighbors who want 'em." This dear couple had come as bride and groom to this same house over sixty years ago. One knew, looking into their faces, that the years together had been happy ones, else they could not have radiated such peace and content. Their very expressions lured you into their past-not an easy past, by any means, but a past where the home was the center and neighbors were neighbors in the truest sense of that beautiful word. The room itself spoke of yesterday, with its log walls and ceilings covered with newspapers, its three great four-poster beds-designs that furniture makers today would covet-and some rare pieces of old china and lustre ware, real heirlooms which few mountain homes can still boast. On the walls hung old family portraits the old couple when they were years younger; the mothers of both of them, who had had their "picture made" together when they had met for an eventful all-day visit; one of the daughters who, now the faithful Martha in the home, had in her younger days gone down to Berea to study. In one corner was the old organ, and along the foot of two beds, seeming to take far more than its share of space, was an old-fashioned grand piano that had been "fotched on" by one of the sons, now a "widder man" who had brought his two sons back to the old home to raise. The house, though none too large, had accordion-like capacity for hospitality. With this patriarchal couple lived two grown bachelor sons, the widower before mentioned, two maiden daughters, and the youngest son with his wife and two children. It was also the lodging place on that creek for the doctor, a venerable octogenarian, who still rode on horseback through the hills caring for his sick. And as for the other house, an adjoining one-room building where the family cooked and ate, what tales it could tell of the travelers who had been fed and warmed. I shall never forget one meal when I was one of the fortunate guests. In spite of the fact that fifteen men working on the new highway were daily boarders, six of us visiting in the community were invited to supper. The regular boarders ate first but seemingly made no impression. The table groaned with fooda great steaming Page 24 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 platter of stewed turkey, constantly being replenished by fluffy dumplings from the big kettle on the stove, baked chicken, fried ham, vegetables, jellies, pickles, biscuit and cornbread. And when we left, the table was set again for the family and neighbors who dropped in. But come and turn the pumpkin rings with me, and share this day of companionship by the fire with my two good friends. Such fun as we had swapping yarns. I told them of my travels across the ocean to frozen northern countries, and of flying from Paris to London. They told me of the fascinating adventures of DIY HOST AND HOSTESS the early settlers. How could mine compare in thrills and interest to the experiences of their grandfathers, who, with their friends, had found their way through Pound Gap from Virginia, taking on foot or horseback all that they had to start their new homes. Can't you see them trudging through the forests, driving a few cows and hogs, carrying gun, axe, and some other of the bare necessities of life? One of the grandmothers brought her cedar churn full of butter, and at those first workings where all gathered to "raise" the houses their corn bread was spread with butter made in their old Virginia home. Those were the days when the bears and panthers still roved the hills at will, and the stock had to be protected in rudely-constructed stockades. No stock law legislation was needed then; safety demanded that their animals be kept up from the prowling marauders. Indians, too, added excitement to the none too dull life of the brave white settlers. But the forests abounded in game as well as dangers, and the land when cleared would yield a rich harvest. The problems of living were first-hand ones the consumers and the producers being one and the same people. In this specialized age few could compete with the skill of those pioneer men and women who fashioned everything they used and wore. Then creative education was not a problem; it was a part of everyday living. I marvelled as the bride of sixty years told me of the first suit she had made for her husband. Soon after she came to the old home to live, she was taken to see the wool which practically filled the loft. It was her task to card and spin, to dy'e the thread with the vegetable dyes she had prepared, to weave the cloth, and to fashion the suit. She still glowed with the pride of that early achievement as she exclaimed, "Hit was a sight how pretty it was, blue flecked with madder and white. Everyone bragged on it when he wore it down to court at Peattyville." Her reminiscing brought a proud and tender smile to the wrinkled face of the old man. That day for the first time I studied a "bluebacked speller," the only textbook of this man who went to school to his mother and later to his oldest sister. He said that it did not compare with Noah Webster's speller, a still earlier edition; but the mastery of its contents would add many words to the vocabularies of our present school boys. One wonders how big a part it played in earning for him the reputation of the "readin'est man" on his creek. My host also had the proud distinction of having been the first public attorney of his county. Studying law in those early days did not necessitate four years of college and a degree from a law school. The knowledge had to be practically dug out of dusty volumes in the office of a friendly lawyer, who acted as guide and counselor. The laboratory was the court itself, where legal argument and eloquence were achieved in the hard school of actual experience. Like the circuit rider and the doctor, the lawyer rode through the country on horse January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 25 back to pursue his practice. Every creek in that whole country was familiar to my friend who had "travelled a sight" when he was younger. His lodging place at night was the home of the friend he was nearest when darkness fell, and the unwritten law of the land would never turn a person away even though he might be a stranger. The days when the passenger pigeons "darkened the elements" was another fascinating topic to me. They passed through that section in such numbers that they broke down the limbs of the trees where they roosted for the night, and the settlers would go out and get all the birds that they wanted to eat. Such feasts as they had. It is no wonder that the name of one of the creeks in that section, "Pigeon Roost," still commemorates those times of abundance. But the pigeons too are part of the past. The species is now extinct and different theories of their passing are advanced. My host said he had been told by his father that they had been drowned in a storm while crossing the big water on their way back from their southern haunts. Time and space forbid my sharing much more that we talked about that day. A glamour does not surround all the experiences. At best, living conditions were hard, and there were many struggles which called for the ,greatest courage and power of endurance. But in a very intimate way living was shared. Cooperation was practiced and not just preached as it is so often today. Much of the social life centered about tasks that could be done more easily in groups. In addition to house-raisings there were log-rollings, bean-shellings, corn-huskings and quiltings. Hard work was accomplished but there was real recreation in the fellowship, and in the rollicking play that followed the bountiful meal prepared by the women. The loving ministry of the neighbors could be counted upon in times of sorrow. They helped to nurse the sick, sitting up with the family through the long hours of the night. When death came to a home their loving hands prepared the body for burial, made the coffin, dug the grave, and tenderly bore the rude box Lip the hill to the family burying-ground. No minister was there to officiate at a service, but later when the circuit rider came through there `vas another gathering at the grave and the funeral sermon was preached. Put the auto horn is honking on the highway summoning me back to today. Reluctantly I leave these two dear old folks who have given me this excursion into the past. I don't wonder that occasionally they shake their heads a bit dubiously as they sit on the porch watching the rate at which this younger generation travels. Grandfather told me of how he had ridden in an automobile last summer to a preaching at the old meeting house: "It seemed like it shook me up so that a-foot or horseback is more to my liking." And so the ways of the two generations separate, but what a heritage back of yesterday has given to today. AN EXPERIMENT IN GUIDANCE JAMES L. ROBB Upon his return from college following the Commencement exercises, a boy was proudly exhibiting the object of his dreams-his diploma. "Well, Son," said his old father, "now that you have your diploma what are going to do with it?" The son was s~artled by this pointed question. He had been so busy cramming for exams, passing courses and accumulating credit hours to count toward graduation that he had given little thought to what would follow. So his reply was, "Dad, I'll have to think .that over." "All right, Son, and while you are doing it you might think this over, too. Some time ago the American Bankers Association made a survey of conditions in the United States and what do you suppose they found? The data which were assembled showed that out of every group of 100 young men starting out, forty years later 54 will be in poorhouses or totally dependent on others' charity, 36 will be dead, 6 will be Page 26 working for a living, 3 will be well-to-do, I will be rich. What. do you think of that?" "Not so good, Dad, but what's that got to do with me?" "Simply this. You are one of another hundred starting out now and you will take your place in one of these groups mentioned. Which will you select?" "Well, let's see. The largest group is described as being in the poorhouse or otherwise wholly dependent. That doesn't appeal to me at all. I have had enough of this dependent stuff during all these years in school when I have had to call upon you for everything. Oh, I know you haven't minded, but all the same I'm through being a dependent. "The next largest group is dead. That's the last thing I want to be, sure enough, and yet the thought doesn't scare me. It's just that you're through when you're dead. That's what I object to. I don't expect ever to be through. "Only ten percent of your mythical people are left to do anything. One of them is rich, three well-to-do, and six are working for a living. I'll take my chances, Dad, on hitting into one of these groups, I'm not so particular which. Of course I would like to be among the well=todo, but I think if I'm alive and able to work after forty years that I'll be satisfied." "Son, how do you suppose these men came to fall into the respective groups?" "Old Man Fate, I guess. I can't account for it any other way." "Is that. so? Well, let me ask you ,just one question. Was it this Old Man Fate, as you call it, that gave your team the extra touchdown which meant victory in that final game last fall?" "Not by a darned sight, Dad; that was due to the clever work of Jackson, our star quarterback, together with great work by the rest of the team, and back of them some mighty good coaching and training. Old Man Fate hasn't a chance when that combination is clicking." "Very good. I can tell you that if the same process of selection, of training, of guidance, of performance used in developing that football teams had been applied to those folk constituting the large group of dependents of whom we have been talking, the group would have MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 been reduced by at least half, if not entirely obliterated. Don't you agree?" "I guess you're right." "This boy Jackson you speak of played quarterback, did he? Why didn't he play guard?" "Because the coach saw in him good quarterback ability, and proceeded to develop him at that position." "Exactly. Now suppose the men in that group of dependents had been placed under someone with as good judgment as the coach evidently had, and suppose they had been helped by him to choose their life work and then been prepared for it as thoroughly and as vigorously as that quarterback was prepared, do you think many of them would have landed in the dependent class?" "No, indeed, not if Coach Babson had trained them." "All right. But coming back to your own case, ,just what did the college see in you and what has it done to train you for the work it saw?" "That's too much for me, Dad. If they saw anything in sight for me they kept it to themselves. I don't know what it is." "Then what is to prevent your drifting into this big class of eventual dependents?" "I'll have to think that over, Dad." The predicament of this young man has been experienced by so many young men and young women the country over that there has arisen a demand for action on the part of the schools and colleges to bring about a change. This demand began as a slight whisper, but it has been steadily increasing in volume until it has covered the nation. It comes from parents, from patrons, and from the students themselves. The demand is that due attention be given to helping the boy or girl discover the line of human endeavor for which he is best suited, and that requisite training be provided. No longer can the schools and colleges sidestep their obligation in this respect. True, they aim to train students to make a life and not merely a living, but the "living" constitutes no small part of the "life" and must be taken into account by any institution that proposes to monopolize the time of the child for sixteen of the most important years of his life. January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 2 7 Thus has arisen of recent years vocational education, and educational and vocational guidance. Under the sponsorship of the Federal government and with its help, great progress has been made in the field of vocational education. So far comparatively little has been accomplished in the more difficult fields of educational and vocational guidance, although it is encouraging to note how much greater emphasis than formerly is now being laid upon it. Largely through the efforts of the National Vocational Guidance Association, many city school systems are setting up guidance departments, and many colleges are establishing personnel departments. Not only are the schools and colleges being utilized for this program of service, but civic clubs, fraternal orders, and other organizations are brought into use. A recent study conducted by Mr. Edwin W. Davis of the Brooklyn Young Men's Christian Association reveals the fact that there are in the United States at the present time twenty-four organizations with national vocational guidance programs. President Hoover, in the opening address at the recent White House Conference on Child Health and Protection, placed much emphasis upon education and guidance. He said: "Our children all differ in character, in capacity, in inclination. If we would give them their full chance they must have vocational guidance." One secret order of world-wide activity, in calling upon its members for cooperation in promoting guidance programs in every state in the nation, has this to say regarding A P)-iceless Possession and a Pressing Problem "America's most valuable possession is not her gold, not her silver or other mineral wealth, not her fertility of soil, her bank deposits, her great commercial and industrial organizations, but the undiscovered and undeveloped talent of her boys and girls. America's greatest problem is not that of international relations, debt cancellation, or farm relief, but that of guiding American boys and girls into vocations in which they can develop most fully, and from which they can obtain the greatest happiness, success, and usefulness to society." Professor William James once said, "However closely psychical changes may conform to law, it is safe to say that individual histories and biographies will never be written in advance, no matter how `evolved' psychology may become." The discovery and recognition of the individual student as distinguished from 'the mass, and an adaptation of methods of instruction to individual differences have probably marked the greatest advance in modern educational procedure. Such recognition and practice arc essential to any program of vocational guidance. A guidance program attempts to do three things: One is to help the boy or girl to dsicover himself-his real self. This is done through helping to bring together as many facts as possible bearing upon the boy or girl. Material will include intelligence tests, aptitude tests, temperament tests, character tests, standard achievement tests, and others; also it will include his life history, the impressions of parents, of teachers, of schoolmates and others, and it will include a personal study by the advisor. Second, a guidance program endeavors to help the boy or girl to discover the world's work. It does this through familiarizing him with all types of work, the requirements, the compensations, the advantages and the disadvantages of each. All the while this is being c'.one, the boy, with a knowledge of his qualifications, is being encouraged to project himself into the vocations being considered. It is made clear to him that the youth of today has a greater range of choices than youth ever had before in the history of the world, that while some occupations have passed away there are numerous new ones to take their places. There are more than 9,090 different kinds of jobs open to the boy and almost as many to the girl. Four fields of activity that a generation ago were practically unknown-aviation, radio, moving picture and chemical industries-are today employing twenty million men. The alert student is encouraged to learn something of as many different vocations as possible, and then to make an intensive study of a few vocations which appear to be most suitable to him. He will learn through lectures, through reports on books and magazine articles, and through personal interviews with per sons actively engaged in the chosen vocations. In the study the student will be advised to inves'igate Page 28 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 certain points with reference to each vocation, for example, the size of the industry and its importance, hours per day, grades or kinds of work represented, physical and hygienic conditions involved, psychic effects-whether the work is monotonous or dreary, stimulating or enervating-compensation, and qualities requisite for success. The third item of service consists in helping the student to put together the data gathered on the first two items in order that at least a tentative decision may be reached with reference to his life work. Associated with this is the supplying of information on how and where to prepare for the chosen work. One attempting a program of guidance will soon be impressed with the truth of the statement coming from the Department of Personnel Study of Yale University that "The only sound occupational guidance is intelligent self guidance." If this is achieved by the advisor he may feel amply rewarded for his efforts, for such self guidance secures the most effective results. It was with such a goal in mind that a class known as the Senior Seminar was organized at Tennessee Wesleyan College, a junior college located at Athens, Tennessee, having an enrollment of three hundred students chiefly from east Tennessee, western North Carolina, western Virginia, Georgia, Alabama, and Florida. The course was in charge of the president of the college and was required of all seniors, one hour of credit being allowed for it. One purpose the President had in mind in assuming charge was the opportunity afforded for increased contact with the individual students composing the senior class. In a junior college with most of the students attending only two years, an administrative officer whose duties take him aften away from the campus and forbid any regular class work is at something of a disadvantage in getting intimately acquainted with his students. He probably feels this loss more than they. He welcomes any plan that helps to obviate this difficulty. The real purpose of the seminar, however, was to give educational and vocational guidance to the members of the class. In view of the fact that all were soon to complete the junior college course and be brought face to face with the necessity of at once entering upon some life work, or of proceeding to the university where as upper classmen they would be expected to choose courses in line with their life work, it was felt that such a time was particularly well suited for definite and pointed emphasis on the choice of and special preparation needed for this work. It was recognized that much guidance should have preceded this period, though actually there had been very little, and that in most cases decisions would have already been made. The plan of the seminar called for one meeting per week throughout the fall quarter, for occasional meetings during the remainder of the year, and for personal conferences between the student and the advisor to be held at some convenient time after the completion of the course when all data would be studied and interpreted. This plan has been followed for three years with results fully ,justifying the effort. As was expected, most of the students had already reached a tentative decision as to their life work. In some instances the study brought a change in plans, in the great majority it brought an enlarged understanding of what was involved in their choice and specific help as to ways and means of reaching their goal. A comparison of vocational choices shows the following The class of 1928 composed of forty members, six of whom have since graduated, with eight others now in attendance upon a senior college or university, has fifteen (40.5 per cent) teaching at the present time. The class of 1930 was composed of thirty-seven members, of whom sixteen (43 per cent) gave teaching as first choice; the class of 1931 is composed of fifty-two members, of whom twenty-seven (52 per cent) list teaching first. This high percentage perferring the teaching profession is doubtless due to the emphasis given teacher training at Tennessee Wesleyan College, and the certification privileges it enjoys from the State Board of Education. The varied types of teaching preferred are worth noting. Listed by members of the 1930 and 19 31 classes are the following Primary 6, Kindergarten 1, English 3, Mathematics 2, History 1, Language 3, Home Economics 4, Physical Education 2, January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 29 Expression 1, General 20. Twelve vocations are listed by the remaining twenty-one members of the class of 1930 and fourteen others by the remaining twentyfive of the class of 1931. They are as follows Nursing 2, Business 4, Pharmacy 1, Aviation 2, Medicine 4, Civil Service 1, Library 4, Interior Decorating 1, Religious Work 11, Dentistry 1, Law 1, Writing 3, Advertising 1, Community Director 1, Laboratory 1, Home Demonstrator 1, Banking 1, Engineering-Chemical 3, Electrical 2. An information chart was compiled for each member. The student supplied a part of the information, the registrar a part, faculty comments a part, and the advisor a part. The chart covered eleven topics: Personal Data, Tests, Educational Data, Interests and Activities, Religious Data, Occupational Data, Personal and Social Habits, General Personality Chart, Family History, Recommendations, and Follow-Up and Readjustment. Information accumulated during the first two quarters of the year. During the third quarter the advisor had an interview with each student at which time a careful study and interpretation of the data found on the chart were undertaken. This furnished a basis for the guidance. No remarkable results have been achieved by this course, but there is evidence that it has helped to stimulate selfguidance on the part of a majority of the class. This was the real purpose motivating the course. Expressions from those taking the course as given in response to a recent questionnaire inquiring as to the practical results realized from it reflect a high appreciation of the contribution of the course among those who have had the longer time to evaluate it. Members of the class of 1928 appear to sense values not found yet by members of the class of 1930. This is reassuring and suggests that the value of the work has some elements of permanency. Some comments from former members may be of interest: me is that it gave a much larger conception of the fields one may enter. It helped to confirm me in my choice. Another result, I had never studied so much about my own weaknesses and other traits of character. Since I took the course and particularly since the interview with you, I have tried to expand my good points and strengthen the weaker ones." 2. "It gave me a deeper consciousness of what my life work meant to me and the necessity of thorough preparation." 3. "My choice was confirmed. I recall the personal interviews and the criticisms brought out. My weaknesses as pointed out then constantly come to mind and make me determined to overcome them." 4. "Helped me to see needs of society as a whole and to choose my life work. I did not fully appreciate the seminar course until I had finished at Tennessee Wesleyan College. and had taught a year." Conclusio)is Some conclusions resulting from the operation of this course are 1. That schools and colleges have an obligation in giving guidance to their students and it is encumbent upon them to give greater time and attention to supplying this ever-growing need. 2. That such a service can be rendered without in any way lessening the value of other service which they aim to give or diminishing in the least the emphasis upon "cultural" values. 3. That a continuous program of guidance should be given beginning in the grades. 4. That the junior college offers exceptional opportunities for helpful guidance, both educational and vocational. 5. That the need for guidance is particularly acute in this Southern Highland country where many of our young people have not had even the average opportunity of acquainting themselves with the work of the world outside. G. That every worker with young people in whatever capacity has an opportunity and an obligation to share in this important work. "The grea,est result of the course .for Page 30 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK January, 1931 RED CROSS DROUGHT RELIEF IN KENTUCKY MAURICE R. REDDY He was a tall, thin man, with excellent features. His clothing on that mild November afternoon was a suit of blue denims, with numerous patches. His shoes were not so good, even .for a mild Fall day in eastern Kentucky. His countenance was serious but peaceful, his spirit was-well the angels would have been envious if the angels were less perfect and had a sense of envy. "How are things down in your neighborhood?" asked a Red Cross worker. "Well," he hesitated; "things are bad, just plumb bad, but on one thing we are all agreed and it's this: If we have to starve we'll all starve together, 'cause we're going to share and share alike, down to the last ear of corn." That is the spirit of thousands of these mountain people. They have been used to hardships and, to use the words of a country merchant, "have always taken their medicine without a squawk." This ,year things are worse than ever before. Unemployment has greatly accentuated distress in these mountain homes. Men who always worked a month or two in felling trees or running saw mills are this year without that employment because the products of the forest are without the ordinary market. It is also true that in some of the coal districts there is less mining than usual, and this has lessened the opportunities for income in thousands of families. Besides that the stalwart sons of these mountaineers have been working in the cities and have been caught in the industrial depression. They are moving back with their families, and in their home-coming find an empty larder. During the late summer when it became obvious that the prolonged drought would cause suffering in the months to follow, state and national leaders were aroused to action, drought relief committees were formed, and the governors or their chosen representatives of the seriously affected states convened in Washington to plan for meeting the crisis. The program of the drought relief commit tees included the immediate construction of highways and other public works, so that employment could be given to drought sufferers; it also called for a liberalized credit to farmers, reduced freight rates, etc. These representatives agreed that the Red Cross should not be called upon until local, state, and national resources had been fully developed and put to use. Although the plan was to have this organization "stand by," the Red Cross realized in early September that the seeding of rye for pasturage would be of great benefit to thousands of people; also, some garden seed would mature into a fall crop. The entire plan had the endorsement of the agricultural experts of the state, and early in September the distribution of rye seed started. Because the idea of "self help" was so much a part of the thinking of everyone, it was agreed that the National Red Cross would pay for two-thirds of the seed and local chapters for the remaining onethird. The total amount spent for seed in Kentucky was $74,603.19, and eleven thousand families received this rye; about nineteen thousand families received garden seed. In many sections the growth of both rye and garden plants was retarded by the continued drought. However, much of the rye may sprout in the spring, thus providing early pasturage. Many people thought mid-September too late for garden planting, but on the date Red Cross seed was delivered, the Agricultural Department of the University of Kentucky planted a test garden with the same type of seed as was given by the Red Cross. The test proved satisfactory and vegetables were harvested and eaten before a killing frost came. In fourteen counties in Kentucky, the American National Red Cross already is feeding folk with National funds and in a great many other counties local chapters are caring for numerou; families. By the time this article goes to press the Red Cross will have extended its January, 1931 MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK Page 31 national operations to several other counties, for local funds are being rapidly depleted. Still other communities have bravely insisted that they could struggle along until well after the first of the year, but would need outside help by midJanuary. The Red Cross, keenly aware of the seriousness of the situation confronting thousands of people, especially in the mountain sections of the State, is acting promptly and at the moment when local relief resources have been exhausted. The organization is not taking over the normal poor relief problems of the various counties. The fiscal courts are expected to continue their regular work. There is, however, a flood of applications for help from families who have never before been recipients of charity. The Red Cross has a strong organization in Kentucky. There are 143 chapters, many of which have been strengthened within the past few months. Besides that the national organization now has fifteen workers in the State, twelve of whom are field representatives, expert in organization and relief work. The other three are accountants, who are assisting chapters in the proper record-keeping so that every cent spent for relief will be accounted for after the manner required of the the War Department of the United States (all Red Cross receipts and disbursements are subject to a War Department audit). The situation has furnished a challenge to local wealth and local leadership. Some counties have very limited resources and others have done a great deal. The plight of many people is pitiable. Whether those in a position to help have acted as their "brother's keeper" is a question for them to answer. In working among these people of the hills one is struck by the many admirable human traits which are shown on every hand: Kindness, concern for one's friends, neighborliness in the most spiritual sense of the word, are everywhere apparent. And while desiring and working for their ample relief, one hopes there will not be any breaking down of a most commendable type of pride which has made them so self-sustaining in the past. Normally there is a narrow margin between sufficient supply and real want in the hill country. This year thousands are on the wrong side of that line. Will this drift to the side of want break down some of the excellent characteristics of communities, or will it more firmly cement the bonds of kindness and neighborliness? Let us hope the latter will prove true. A MOUNTAIN PARABLE DIM ROAD AND BRIGHT MAY JUSTUS The doctor's buggy lurched uncertainly over the rutty mountain road, and the doctor peered anxiously ahead, trying to determine the general direction of the way. He must reach the cabin in less than an hour-and what if he were to get lost? Just before him appeared two roads neither very well marked, and the doctor pulled on the reins, and got out to examine his route. After some minutes he was as perplexed as ever. Neither road before him seemed to be the right one, and he was at a total loss to know what he ought to do. Just at this moment a man came up, and the doctor inquired of him. "Follow ahead the dim road," the man said to him. "It's a little hard to see, but after a bit the road gets bright, and then it's easy enough. You can't get lost-it's the same road all the way." The doctor got back into the old buggy and followed the road ahead. It was indeed a dim road-a dim, dim road. The doctor had followed many such roads away back here in the hills. There were, it seemed, so many dim roads-roads of ignorance, of prejudice, of misunderstanding, of folly. Sometimes he grew quite weary of following these roads. They seemed so tangled, so twisted, so difficult to him. There were times when the doctor rode these dim ways and wondered if they were not lost ways after all, and if he were not more or less of a fool to follow them mile after mile. The trees parted, the dim road cleared, and the doctor rode into the sun. "The bright road, the bright road," he said to himself, "the man back there was right. The dim road turns into bright road-it's the same road after all." OUR CONTRIBUTORS CHARLES 1). LEWIS has had long years of experience in the mountains. At present he is at Middle Tennessee Teachers College, Murfreesboro, Tennessee. LOUISE LEONARD MCLAREN is director of The Southern Summer School for Women Workers in Industry. EDWARD W. HUGHES is an Episcopalian minister who has given twenty years of service in the mountains of Virginia. ANN COBB is the author of "Kinfolks," a book of mountain poetry. She is a teacher at Hindman Settlement School. W. S. ANDERSON is Professor of Genetics at the College of Agriculture, Lexington, Kentucky. HELEN H. DINGMAN is editor of MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK. JAMES L. ROBB is President of Tennessee Wesleyan College, Athens, Tennessee. MAURICE R. REmY is Assistant Acting ;Manager of the Eastern Area of the American Red Cross, with office situated at Washington, D. C. MAY JUSTUS has written some charlninv, children's stories about the mountains. Her latest is "At the Foot of Windy Low."