Tuesday, August 16

Hard Working Mountain People

Uncle Noah Couch was Granny's brother and my memories of him are as strong today as they were when I was making them riding in the back of his old "jolt" wagon filled with produce from his garden up on Bluegrass. He let me ride shotgun I reckon and I thought I was the "berries" and I would count out the ears of corn, etc. and when he let me off the wagon at the end of the day with him, I was tired and watched him ride out of sight til the next time.

Oh, the stories he had in his head and could relate to us youngans were awesome, most of them were true, but he called them "tales". They had dinner on the ground once a year up at his house in the holler there at Blue Grass and it was to honor the ones of the family that had passed. It was a huge gathering and lasted most of the day. You talk about good "grub", I don't think you could mention an item that was not found on the tables that were loaded with good home cookin'.

One thing I remember though was the sad, plaintive songs they would sing when the singing "commenced". We were very young but it stung our heartstrings to hear what was going on above us. We played in the area below the shelter built for this event, but I still can hear the sad voices that blended, without music, as they lifted their thanks to God and sent their love on the country breeze blowing in that holler.

What a time for remembering and their way of rendering honor to those gone from the clan, and giving thanks for those still living. Just writing about it brings tears for they were hard-working mountain people who loved and gave lots of it to family and friends. God gave me the best of the best.


  1. Those sad songs you mentioned brought back a lot of memories.My mother,grandmother and great-grandmother all sang those types of songs.I know the words to them all,but I was lucky enough to tape each of them singing before they passed away.Now my mother remains and she still carries on the tradition.

  2. Wonderful story of days that we will never see again. I would love to hear those songs.