Sugar Cane, Sorghum, and Stir-offs
Do you know that stir-offs have been held in Kentucky for 150 years, and that they provided the main sweetener for Appalachians for 100 years? Or that the product of a stir-off might not really be molasses? Or how Alan Pinkerton fits into the story? Watch Sugar Cane, Sorghum, and Stir-offs below to become part of an eastern Kentucky stir-off and to hear answers to these and other questions.
The Most Beautiful Part of Alaska
A video tour of the mountains, rivers, lakes, birds, fish and animals of the Cooper Landing area of the Kenai Peninsula, the most beautiful part of Alaska.
American Chestnut Blight - Greatest Forest Loss in History
There were once almost 4 billion American chestnuts and they were among the largest, tallest, and fastest-growing trees in the eastern forest. The wood was long-lasting, straight-grained, and suitable for furniture, fencing, and building. The nuts fed billions of birds and animals. It was almost a perfect tree - that is, until it was killed by a blight a century ago. That blight has been called the greatest ecological disaster to strike the world's forests in all of history. A tree that had survived all adversaries for 40 million years had disappeared within 40
Hog Killing - Where Pork Chops Come From!
Pork chops don't originate in pressure-sealed plastic packages in supermarkets. They come from butchering hogs - and this is the way it's done on River Road in Eastern Kentucky, when the weather becomes reliably cold.
We Make Molasses - and Almost Everything Else We Eat
Molasses were a staple of Appalachian mountain households, providing a needed sweetener for many foods and a means of making medicine more palatable. Stiroffs were not just very hard work, they were also social occasions, bringing a community together to share the work and the molasses. There was almost always an accompanying feast and occasionally recreational liquids to help pass the long hours of the process. Molasses are still prized and sought after for country kitchens.
Swaging - Creative Blacksmithing and Original Art
A swage block is used for working sheet steel and shaping metal, and making spoons, ladles, shovels, tools, intricate art objects, and creating original pieces from steel and iron. Swaging is the artistic side of blacksmithing, allowing for the production of beauty and function.
BLACKSMITHING -WHITE HOT ARTISTRY
Eastern Kentucky is one of the few places with master blacksmiths who can work with 2400 degree steel and do everything from shoeing horses to making fine furniture and art objects. One of the essential elements of blacksmithing is building an effective fire, and this demonstrates how that is best done