Farmsteaders | by Shaena Mallett | Appalachian Culture| Saturday (11/3) 2:00pm Belk Library 114 – Appstate Campus
Clear-eyed and intimate, Farmsteaders is as much a study of place as it is a study of persistence. Having abandoned a career as a food processing engineer at General Mills, Nick returns home, the prodigal son, and he, his wife Celeste and their young family resurrect his late grandfather’s dairy farm. Heroic, benign and accessible, Nick and Celeste’s meditations on life, legacy, and resistance offer an unexpected voice from a forsaken people – those who grow the food that sustains us.
Trail Magic | by Peter Huston | Appalachian Adventure| Saturday (11/3) 2:00pm Belk Library 114 – Appstate Campus
Emma “Grandma” Gatewood’s story speaks to the courageous, undaunted spirit of Appalachian people everywhere. Emma was born in 1887 at Raccoon Creek, Gallia County Ohio; she was one of 15 children. At 19 she married Perry Clayton Gatewood, a teacher. After 32 years of spouse abuse, raising eleven children, she divorced Perry,
Emma decided she needed another challenge. When she read about the Appalachian Trail in National Geographic she discovered that no woman had ever hiked the entire trail alone so she decided to BE that woman.
In 1955, at 67 Emma was the first woman to solo hike the AT. This was no small feat! She became known as “Grandma” Gatewood. Sports Illustrated featured her story and she was interviewed on “NBC Today” and Groucho Marx’ Show. Her story raised the veil on cultural barriers including age and sex discrimination.
To Kingdom Come by Brian Campbell – Runtime 30 minutes| Saturday (11/3) 2:00pm Belk Library 114 – Appstate Campus
When I first visited Rome, Georgia, I drove north into the foothills of the Appalachians, the Ridge and Valley province, and I was overwhelmed by the beauty of the rolling forested landscape. The abundance of lakes and rivers sparkled with opportunity. The Etowah and Oostanaula Rivers come together in Rome and become the Coosa River. As I drove along the Coosa into Rome, I noticed the abandoned General Electric transformer plant in the middle of town; it’s a compound of structures and barren concrete surrounded by barbed wire, a hauntingly dead landscape in the midst of a living city. Turns out GE contaminated the Coosa River in Rome just as they did the Hudson River in New York. While the Hudson was dredged by GE at the EPA’s urging, dredging of rivers in Georgia has not occurred. In addition to river contamination, residential and commercial properties in Rome have been subjected to GE’s PCB waste. While GE invested almost two billion dollars in the cleanup of the Hudson, they left Rome with a toxic legacy of PCBs that will remain, as one local citizen noted, “to kingdom come.” This film presents the battle between Rome’s riverkeepers and General Electric over PCBs and explores the underlying cultural encounter between the North and South through candid interviewing and historical media.