Category Archives: People

Dinah Shore

Dinah Shore was born Frances Rose Shore in Winchester, Tennessee.

She had polio as a baby but recovered to become a cheerleader in high school. She earned a bachelors degree in sociology from Vanderbilt University before launching her career in …

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Cordell Hull

“Cordell Hull was born in 1871 in Pickett County Tennessee one of five boys. His father was a farmer. He attended a one room school and later schools in Kentucky and Southern Ohio, eventually earning a law degree and returning …

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Louisa May Alcott

Louisa May Alcott is known as the author of Little Women and is not usually associated with the Appalachian Region. She was born in 1832 in Germantown Pennsylvania, the second of four daughters.

Her childhood was extremely poor but apparently …

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Sequoyah

Sequoyah was born in 1776 near what is now Monroe County, Tennessee. His mother was Cherokee and his father was Nathaniel Gist of Virginia. He is thought to have been lame.

He served with the U.S. Army in the Battle …

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Bessie Smith

Bessie Smith, known as the “Empress of the Blues” was born in Chattanooga sometime between 1894-1900.

She was discovered by Ma Rainey and became a hit on the vaudeville circuit.  Her first recording ” Downhearted Blues” was released in 1924 …

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George Campbell Scott

George C. Scott was born in Wise, Virginia in 1927.

His mother died when he was 8 years old. In 1945 he joined the Marines and served for four years. After his service he attended University of Missouri Journalism School …

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William Childs Westmoreland

“William C. Westmoreland was born in Spartanburg South Carolina in 1914. His father was a successful textile manufacturer. He attended West Point and graduated in 1936. He served in WWII first as an artillery commander then as a staff officer. …

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Pearl Sydenstricker Buck

Pearl Buck was born in 1892, the fourth of seven children, in Hillsboro, West Virginia to Southern Presbyterian Missionaries who were home on furlough.

At three months, she was taken to China by her parents. She grew up speaking both …

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Rosa Lee Parks

Rosa Parks was born in Tuskegee, Alabama in 1913. Her father was a carpenter and her mother was a teacher. She grew up on her grandparents’ farm near Montgomery and attended the Montgomery Industrial School for Girls.

She attended the …

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Tammy Wynette

Tammy Wynnette, country music’s “Heroine of Heartbreak” was born in 1942 in Itawamba County, Mississippi. Her real name was Virginia Wynette Pugh.

She recorded a string of hits and received two Emmy awards, plus many other honors including a place …

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Dolly Parton

Dolly Parton was born in 1946 in Sevier County, Tennessee. She was from a family of twelve children.

She reportedly began to make up songs before she could read or write and has since authored more than 300 songs, many …

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William Cuthbert Faulkner

William Faulkner was born in 1897 in New Albany, Mississippi, one of four sons. His great grandfather was a Civil War Colonel and best selling author.

He moved with his parents as a child to Oxford, Mississippi, a town that …

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Charles E. Yeager

Charles E. “Chuck” Yeager was born in Myra, West Virginia in 1923, the second of four children. He completed high school but did not attend college. His father was a gas driller.

He enlisted in the Army Air Corps at …

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Charles Bronson

Charles Bronson was born in 1921 as Charles Buchinsky in Ehrenfeld, Pennsylvania.

He was one of 15 children in a Lithuanian coal mining family and, though he completed high school, worked in the mines himself before serving as a tail …

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