Cultivating Homelands : Books


Agee, James. Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1960.

Still one of the best sources for Depression Era pictures and first hand information on tenant farming in the South.

Ancona, George. The American Family Farm: A Photo Essay. San Diego: Harcourt Brace, 1989.

Pictorial essay of the American family farm. Focuses on the daily lives of three families in Massachusetts, Georgia, and Iowa. (Juvenile nonfiction).

Atlanta in 1890: 'The Gate City.' Macon, GA: Mercer U.P., 1986.

Original 1890 manuscript with introduction and annotations. Republished by the Atlanta Historical Society.

Berry, Wendell. Home Economics. New York: North Point Press, 1987.

Of particular interest in this collection of fourteen essays are "Six Agricultural Fallacies," "A Defense of the Family Farm," and "Does Community Have a Value?"

Berry, Wendell. What are People For? New York: North Point Press, 1990.

The title essay is a short, provocative piece questioning whether the mass migration from farms to cities over the last century is necessarily a good thing. "The Work of Local Culture" is an excellent look at the ingredients necessary for establishing and sustaining communities.

Brown, Rodger Lyle. Ghost Dancing on the Cracker Circuit: The Festivals of the American South. Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 1997.

Descriptions of various festivals. Includes a bibliography.

Coulter, E. Merton. Georgia: A Short History. Chapel Hill, NC: UNC Press, 1947.

Still one of the most enjoyable histories and reliable beginning source for many topics.

Georgia Department of Archives and History. Vanishing Georgia. Athens,GA: UGA Press, 1982.

Good source for pictures of city and town life, social life and customs.

Greenberg, Paul. "'Redneck' is Not a Dirty Word." Encountering Cultures. Ed. Richard Holeton. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 1995. 49.

A good-natured response to a Smyrna, GA, historical society president's having demanded an apology from National Geographic for its use of the word redneck to describe Smyrna.

Henson, Pamela M. et al. Oral History Project Procedures Manual. Washington, D.C.: Archives and Special Collections of the Smithsonian Institution, 1982. (Revised 1988).

While this manual was produced in order to assist those compiling oral histories from retired members of the Smithsonian staff, it provides some good insights for anyone collecting and writing oral histories. Especially helpful sections include those on interviewing techniques and copyright information specific to use of tapes and transcripts. Bibliographies on oral history, audio-visual techniques, and videohistory. [For a free copy of the manual: e-mail Jennifer Nichols at]

History of the Baptist Denomination in Georgia. Easley, SC: Southern Historical Press, [1976?].

Reproduced from an 1881 edition first published in Atlanta. Contains a biographical compendium and portrait gallery of Baptist ministers and other Georgia Baptists.

Lassiter, Patrice. Generations of Black Life in Kennesaw and Marietta. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Pub., 1999.

Pictorial history. Part of the Images of America series.

McQuade, Hank. Light Up Our Land: Georgia Electric Membership Corporation, the First Fifty Years. Atlanta: The Corporation, 1990.

A promotional, in-house publication but helps document how important the arrival of electricity was in changing rural life.

McWhiney, Grady. Cracker Culture: Celtic Ways in the Old South. Tuscaloosa, AL: University of Alabama Press, 1988.

Traces origins of elements of Southern culture. Includes bibliography.

Raper, Arthur. Tenants of the Almighty. New York: The Macmillan Co., 1943.

The story of Greene County, GA and its unified farm program.

Sampson, Gloria. Historical Churches and Temples of Georgia: A Book of Watercolors and Drawings. Macon, GA: Mercer U.P., 1987.

Teaching with Documents. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1989.

Practical suggestions for using documents in various classroom settings. Over 50 public domain documents from 1780's through the 1970's are discussed and illustrated.

Temple, Sarah Blackwell. The First Hundred Years: A Short History of Cobb County in Georgia. Atlanta: Walter W. Brown Publishing Co., 1935.

Generally located in Special Collections. Includes information on cemeteries.

Wilson, Charles Reagan and William Ferris. eds. Encyclopedia of Southern Culture. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1989.

From agriculture to porches to urbanization - or any topic connected with the South--- this reference book is an excellent starting point. Well-written articles with cross-referencing and additional bibliographies provided.