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Eleanor Dickinson collection, 1901-2004

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Series V: Artifacts
FILE 5/1 AFC 1970/001: AR01
Glass whiskey bottle (3 in. x 6.5 in. x 1 in.), emptied and cleaned; containing religious messages translated into 14 various languages, and printed on a slip of paper. The bottle is corked.
FILE 5/2 AFC 1970/001: AR02
One metal lapel pin, with the words "Jesus First" (the "t" is a cross), from Jerry Falwell's "The Old-Time Gospel Hour" (1956 or after).
Series VI: Electronic media
3 CD-Rs.
Images and PowerPoint files for a presentation on "Revival!" (2004). Printouts of materials located in folder 4/24.
FILE 5 Contains materials for presentation on "Elkmont" (undated). Printouts of materials located in folder 4/25.
Appendix A: Guide to the collection's fourteen-part accrual system
Part 1: AFC 1970/001: AFS 14079-14082, 1968-1969
4 sound tape reels : analog, 3.75 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally made in 1968 and 1969. These audio recordings document Tennessee church music (songs), sermons, and speaking in tongues, all in a revival setting. Specific Tennessee revivals noted are: Valley Grove Baptist Church; Missionary Baptists' tent on Sevierville Highway; Holy Rollers, Knoxville; 5th Avenue Baptist Revival; Scott Street Assembly of God Revival; Magnolia Avenue Revival; Missionary Baptist and Pentecostal, Elkmont; Church of God, Sunset Gap; First Calvary Baptist Church, Lonsdale; Pigeon Forge Church of God. Services are principally Anglo American, some African American. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: June 1970. See folders 2/7-2/12 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 2: AFC 1970/001: AFS 15455-15458, summer 1972
4 sound tape reels : analog, 3.75 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally made in the summer of 1972 and include sermons, praying, singing, call and response, testifying, anointing with oil, faith healing, speaking in tongues, drinking strychnine, snake handling, foot washing, and holy kiss. Specific revivals and prayer meetings include: Johnny Chambers tent revival, Knoxville, Tennessee–urban tent revival; Meridian Baptist, Knoxville, Tennessee; First Calvary Baptist Church, Lonsdale, Tennessee–prayer meeting; Scrabble Creek Holiness Church, West Virginia; Camp Creek Pentecostal Holiness Church, West Virginia. Reverend Pappy Beaver figures prominently in several of these tapes. Recordings also include interviews with Brother H.H. Mayes (Middlesborough, Kentucky) and a discussion of his religious road sign ministry. Made from 16 original 5-inch field recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: March 1973. See folders 2/13-2/16 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 3: AFC 1970/001: AFS 15661-15666, June-July 1973
6 sound tape reels : analog, 3.75 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally made in June-July, 1973, in Tennessee and West Virginia. Recordings document Reverend Pappy Beaver's tent revival, Knoxville, Tennessee; Camp Creek Pentecostal Holiness Church, West Virginia; Scrabble Creek Holiness Church, West Virginia. Tapes also include creek baptizing, Beaver Creek, Dry Gap, Tennessee; interview with Reverend Roger Powell and Mrs. Powell, Church of God of the Mountain Assembly, Lake City, Tennessee; First Calvary Baptist Church Sunday service, Knoxville, Tennessee; interviews concerning "baptism of fire," "faith healing," and snake-bite medical data. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: August 1973. See folders 2/17-2/25 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 4: AFC 1970/001: AFS 19133-19145, 1977 or before
13 sound tape reels : analog, 7.5 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
The field recordings comprising Part 4 were originally made on unknown dates in Tennessee and Kentucky and include tent revival meetings, hymns, sermons, testifying, speaking in tongues, and snake handling. Specific revivals include: Greater Gethsemane Church of God in Christ Holy Ghost meeting; Holiness Church of God in Jesus Name tent revival, Newport, Tennessee; Brush Arbor Revival, Claiborne County, Tennessee; Pappy Beaver's Revival, Tennessee. Recordings also include interviews with Brother H.H. Mayes and his wife discussing his religious sign ministry, house, and bottles; auctioneering, Carl's Auction, Maryville, Tennessee; and bluegrass renditions of patriotic songs: "America Bless God," Gatlinburg, Tennessee; Baillie Brothers "Grand Ole Opry" Revue, and Sons of the Smokies religious music program. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: August 1977. See folder 2/26 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 5: AFC 1970/001: AFS 19283-19288, summer 1977
6 sound tape reels : analog, 7.5 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally recorded in the summer of 1977 and document revivals and services that include hymns, sermons, speaking in tongues, faith healing, casting out a devil, dancing in the spirit, prophesying, and snake handling. Tapes identify revival and service participants as African American, white, and inter-racial, urban and rural. Specific revivals and church services include: Church of God of the Mountain Assembly, Lake City, Tennessee–Brother Roger Powell; tent revival, Lafollette, Tennessee–Reverend Kenneth Ivey; Reverend Pappy Beaver's Revival, Knoxville, Tennessee; Reverend Paul Breeden's Apostolic Church, Knoxville, Tennessee; Jesus Christ Church, Camp Creek, West Virginia; Church of Jesus Christ, Jolo, West Virginia. Interviews are conducted with Brother and Sister Mayes of Middlesborough, Kentucky, and with Blitz Turner of Ridgeview, West Virginia. In the latter, topics of discussion include snake and fire handling, and strychnine drinking. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: June 1978. See folders 1/2 and 3/1 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 6: AFC 1970/001: AFS 20267-20307, 1973-1979
41 sound tape reels : analog, 7.5 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally recorded between 1973 and 1979 in Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Miscellaneous additional dates include a 1963 radio broadcast "20th Century Reformation Hour;" an October 1974 Seventh Day Adventist Revival, San Francisco, California; a 1972 Canadian Broadcast Corporation tape featuring a story on Cloretta Starks Robertson of West Oakland, California, noted here as the first child, first African American, first Pentecostal, and second person in North America to have stigmata.
Recordings include various revival practices and phenomena such as: speaking in tongues, snake handling, drinking of strychnine, casting out of devils, screams, praying, healing, all-day hymn singing and meeting, sermons, Bible quiz, dancing in the spirit, falling out under the power, testifying, Lord's Supper, foot washing, instrumental performances (including instruments such as accordion, guitar, cymbals, piano, organ, drums, dulcimer, autoharp, harmonica, recorder, tambourine), two forms of creek baptizing (one in Jesus' name only and one in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, thus distinguishing the split in the Holiness churches [1978]), at Holston River near Marblehead, Tennessee. Other practices recorded include a "homecoming" ceremony, the decoration of graves at Elkmont and Jake's Creek cemeteries, and dinner on the grounds. Vocal music is featured prominently throughout these recordings and includes: Old Harp Singers, secular, folk and religious songs of many varieties. Related recorded sounds include: summertime sounds of a Tennessee afternoon and evening, and the amplified rattles and hisses of rattlesnakes and copperheads. Tapes identify revival and service participants as white, rural coal miners, as well as farmers and older people. Additional segments identify participants as poor, urban, and interracial.
Specific revivals and church services include: Camp Creek Pentecostal Holiness Church, West Virginia; Apostolic Holiness Church, Knoxville, Tennessee; Cathedral of Deliverance, Knoxville, Tennessee; Church of God of the Mountain Assembly, Lake City, Tennessee; Revival "Faith Home Mission," Gay Street ("special mission to the drunks and whores of Knoxville"), Knoxville, Tennessee; Holiness Church of Jesus Christ, Jolo, West Virginia; tent revival, Yoakum Junction, Lafollette, Tennessee; Pappy Beaver, store front revival and "Bible Church of God," Western Avenue, Knoxville, Tennessee; Sevierville Church of God, Tennessee; Brush Arbor Revival, Claiborn, Tennessee; RocKentucky Grove Baptist Church near Cosby, Tennessee.
Of special note is original tape D36, which documents Dickinson's experiences while recording a revival at Camp Creek, West Virginia, on June 25, 1978. Two daughters of a preacher, who objected to having a photographer present, launched an attack on Dickinson and her equipment, finally throwing the video camera into the tape recorder and tripod. Large portions of four hours of taping were completely lost; however, some parts were salvaged. Some material on the tapes appears to be duplicated. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: January 1981. See folders 1/4 and 3/2 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 7: AFC 1970/001: AFS 23158-23176, 1980-1981
19 sound tape reels : analog, 3.75 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally recorded between 1980 and 1981 and document prayer meetings, services, and one church meeting at the Church of the Lord Jesus, as well as a "Homecoming" and a "serpent hunt" based in Jolo, West Virginia. There is also a recording of an exhibition opening ceremony at the Tennessee State Museum, with Rev. Howard Finster, as well as Jean Schilling and Lee Shilling, who prayed and sang. The exhibition opening was followed by a songfest at a private home in Nashville, Tennessee.
Taped interviews include conversations with "Uncle" Lem Owenby, Elkhurst, Tennessee; Mattie Mae Lawson, Washington, D.C.; Reverend Womack, Roanoke, Virginia; a series of recordings made over a two-day period with Rev. Howard Finster, Summerville, Georgia; Barbara Elkins, Jolo, West Virginia; several discussions with Dewey and Claire Chaffin about medical symptoms of snake bites, location of snake handling churches, snake handling in general, handling fire, and drinking poison in Jolo, West Virginia; Reverend Floyd Somerville and others, Springfield, Tennessee.
Recordings include religious radio program broadcasts from Knoxville to Nashville, Tennessee, Adairville, Kentucky, as well as Virginia and Pennsylvania and a Paul Simon special from Nashville, Tennessee. Miscellaneous tapes feature songs and stories by "Fiddlin" Arthur Smith and family, Nashville, Tennessee; a sermon by Reverend Thomas King; and "Imitating God" by Isaiah Hughes at a tent revival, in Madison, Tennessee. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: November 1984. See folders 1/5 and 3/3 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 8: AFC 1970/001: AFS 23177-23182
6 sound tape reels : analog, 7.5 ips, 2 track, 10 in.
Originally recorded in 1976 and document prayers, songs leading to the Lord's Supper, reading and explanation, foot washing, casting out of the devil, "altar call," testifying, prayer for the anointing to handle snakes, speaking in tongues, preaching, dancing, jerks, and faith healing.
Specific revivals include: Pappy Beaver's Open Bible Church, Western Ave., Knoxville, Tennessee; Sevierville Church of God, and "House of Prayer," Sevierville, Tennessee, including a reference to Pigeon Ford, Tennessee, and to Reverend Jake Owens, grandfather of Dolly Parton (the subject of the song "Daddy was an Old Time Preacher Man"); Brush Arbor, Yoakum Junction, Tennessee; and a tent revival at Carson Springs with Reverend Raines.
Interviews include: personal discussions of revival practices and paraphernalia (Brother H.H. Mayes is a prominent informant), creating artifacts and erecting signs, folk music of the region (labeled by Dickinson as "early settlers music"); "Uncle" Lem Owenby and his nephew J.T. Higdon on beekeeping, history of settlers and development of Great SmoKentucky Mountains National Park; Reverend and Mrs. Roger Powell regarding his mother-in-law featured in a famous photo on strip mining, devils, and the Bible; after revival discussion with Rev. Raines, son and wife including a discussion of beliefs; Brother H.H. Mayes and Sister Lillie Mayes showing revival paraphernalia and scrapbooks in their home, road signs, missionary bottles and other artifacts, and discussing their faith, beliefs, morality, etc.; Jean Schilling and Lee Schilling featured in a concert in the mountains singing "America Bless God"; Reverend Walter Baillie and others in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
Preservation and reference tapes in the possession of the American Folklife Center were duplicated from 8 90-minute cassettes loaned by Dickinson. The cassettes were returned to the collector, while preservation and reference duplicate recordings were assigned AFS numbers 23177-23182. Made from recordings loaned by Dickinson for duplication. Accrual date: November 1984. See folder 3/4 for audio logs and transcripts.
Part 9, August 23, 1987; June 24, 1988
2 videocassettes (VHS) and 45 sound cassettes
The video portion of Part 9 was donated as a gift to the American Folklife Center, while the audio materials were loaned by Dickinson for duplication. The original cassette recordings were returned to the collector and assigned identifier numbers SR042-060.
The 2 VHS videocassettes are as follows: "Real Time West Virginia with Four Holiness People, 1978" (first shown at Camera Work Gallery, San Francisco, 1987), 42.5 minutes; includes Jean Schilling and Lee Schilling, Creekmore Cabin, Elkmont, Tennessee. Recording date: August 23, 1987.
Rev. Howard Finster, "God Paints a Picture," 94 minutes, Summerville, Georgia. Recording date: July 19, 1985. Includes entire sequence of painting a picture. Accrual date: June 24, 1988.
Part 10
5 videocassettes (Betamax)
Subjects and interviews featured on the videocassettes include the following: "Brother Mayes," "Sister Mayes," collage. Each videocassette has a segment of "Revival!" (1981); 1 copy of "Revival!" and other published materials. "Brother Roy–healing and casting out devils," Madison, Tennessee, 1980; "Holiness People of West Virginia" 1979, music.
"Sister Mayes," "Healing and casting out devils," "Healing," "Music in South Appalachian Mountains," "Lord's Supper."
"Stigmata," "Larry Hester and choir (New Light Missionary Baptist Church, Oakland, California)," "California Revivals," "Casting out devils," "Sister Mayes."
"Music in South Appalachia," "Preaching and salvation," "Fire and Serpents and Poison," "Speaking in tongues," "Lord's Supper," "Foot Washing Baptism."
See folder 4/5 for documentation. Accrual dates: June 8, 1982; December 18, 1996.
Part 11, August 2, 1980; 1981
Four U-matic videocassettes (originals) of tent revivals taped on August 2, 1980, in Madison, Tennessee. Also included were two 5-inch videoreels of Howard Finster from 1981 (V-81-F-2 and V-81-F-3). Accrual date: July 3, 1991.
Part 12, 1976-1981
168 videoreels (8 sound tape reels : 7 in. ; and 160 sound tape reels : 5 in.),
These extensive handwritten logs identify the subjects on the tapes. The people, places and activities noted are an excellent starting point for understanding this collection as a whole, as many of the audio tapes duplicate the moving images. The Library of Congress does not have all tapes listed in the logs. See the 1996 video chart for complete holdings.
The content of these tapes include African American and Anglo American churches, urban and rural church services, and revivals videotaped in Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virginia. These videoreels include practices associated with revivals, including but not limited to: singing, preaching, testifying, symbols (roadside signs and crosses), snake handling, falling out under the power, handling fire, drinking poison, glossolalia, healing, foot washing, as well as interviews with ministers and others.
Accrual date: December 1996. See the tape logs in folders 3/15-3/18 and 4/1-4/7, which Dickinson refers to as "editing scripts" in folders 52-66.
Part 13
Taped in Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia, and West Virginia, the tapes cover diverse topics that Dickinson was not sure that she had sent in before. As a consequence, there may be duplications of earlier materials sent to the American Folklife Center. This portion contains a very comprehensive collection of interviews with Rev. Howard Finster. An inventory and content summary of these recordings follow:
Finster tapes: 24 audiocassettes recorded between 1981 and 1991 at the Finster home in Summerville, Georgia. Interviews were conducted by Eleanor Dickinson and include singing as well as conversation. Among these 24 recordings are two miscellaneous interviews: side B (from July 19, 1985) features Homer Rathbone singing in Cosby, Tennessee, and Side B (from July 16, 1990) contains conversation with Evelyn Creekmore, of Elkmont, Tennessee. In addition, two miscellaneous recordings of the opening of Dickinson's show at the Tennessee State Museum recorded November 15, 1981. On the second sides of these tapes are Nashville musicians and singing and conversation in Nashville, Tennessee. See folder 3/9 for audio log information, concordance, and tape photocopies.
Old Harp Singing: 4 audiocassettes recorded October 1976 and September 1978 and recorded in Wears Valley, Tennessee. These cassettes feature singers at First Baptist Church, Cades Cove Baptist Church, and the music of the Sevier County Old Harp Singers. See folder 3/5 for audio log information, concordance, and tape photocopies.
Miscellaneous tapes: 2 audiocassettes recorded August 1981. These are religious radio programs from the southern Appalachian region.
Serpent Handling Churches: 10 audiocassettes recorded September 1981. All of these audiocassettes appear to be associated with the Church of the Lord Jesus in Jolo, West Virginia. They cover the service along with interviews before and after concerning various revival practices especially associated with snake hunting. There is a notation on the log for an unnumbered tape for September 8, 1981 (interview with Barbara Elkins, wife of the preacher). There is no tape to go with this notation. See folder 3/6 for audio log information, concordance, and tape photocopies.
Accrual date: April 23, 1992.
Part 14
Five items used in "Revival!": 4 Rally Day postcards (heavy-stock paper; color), and "A Light to Lighten the Gentiles the Glory of Israel" (paper clipping; color); one prayer card or Sunday School card (identified on the label as "Victorian"); one Rally Day card (heavy-stock paper; color; not part of the "Revival!" group).
Bound item: one Personal Bible (booklet; red paper cover; measures about 1.5 in. x 1.25 in.).
Artifact: one metal lapel pin, with the words "Jesus First" (the "t" is a cross), from Jerry Falwell's "The Old-Time Gospel Hour" (not earlier than 1956).
Optical media: 2 CD-Rs of images and PowerPoint files for presentations in "Revival!" (2004); they contain the same files, and 1 CD-R of materials for presentation on "Elkmont" (undated).
Accrual date: April 1, 2004. See folder 1/3 for documentation.

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