Challenge and Change in Appalachia: The Story of Hindman by Jess Stoddart

By Jess Stoddart

" the 1st and such a lot profitable rural social cost college within the usa lies on the forks of not easy Creek in Knott County, Kentucky. in view that its founding in 1902 by way of might Stone and Katherine Pettit, the Hindman cost college has got accolades for the standard of its schooling, healthiness, and group companies that experience measurably better the lives of individuals within the sector. problem and alter in Appalachia is the tale of a groundbreaking heart for schooling that reworked a group. The School's farms and extension paintings introduced sleek how you can the world. while, the college inspired protection of the region's crafts and song. this day, designated courses for dyslexic childrens, paintings in grownup schooling, and cultural background actions make the college a version for rural redevelopment.

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Moreover, in Katherine Pettit’s view, denominational struggles over souls often sabotaged other needed services. Stone and Petit thus decided to found Hindman as a Christian—but nondenominational—educational institution. While Pettit and Stone were not free of the views common to the missionary movement, living closely with the mountaineers offset some of their early inclinations to stereotype these people and to characterize them with exaggerated generalities. The evolution of their perceptions can be traced through their journals and in early newsletters.

With the commercial “Mixin’ Larns Both Parties” 25 exploitation of the mountain forests came severe erosion, along with the silting of creeks and environmental damage. It was timber, more than coal, that made it increasingly unlikely that a farm family in Knott County could maintain itself. Perhaps most important, as Stone and Pettit surveyed the nature of the change that was unfolding, they saw a broad variety of educational programs as the key assistance they could provide. The women who founded the Settlement are best characterized as opposites who combined to form a great team.

But such attitudes were most pronounced at the beginning and diminished over time. On the whole, their Settlement School programs were practical responses to real conditions far more than they were an elaboration of cultural stereotypes. The diary of the final summer camp at Sassafras presents a much more complex understanding of mountain life than do the reports from the preceding two summers. ”43 During the three summer camps, it was Pettit who kept the journals of their activities and experiences, except for the final weeks at Sassafras.

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