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Roan Mountain Project Collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: AppMs-435

Scope and Contents

The Roan Mountain Project was part of the Upper Cumberland Folklore, Folklife, and Oral History Archives Project sponsored by the Tennessee Department of Conservation. Homer Kemp of Tennessee Technological University’s Upper Cumberland Studies Program, headed the Upper Cumberland project for the department of conservation. During 1992, the project evaluated various types of documentation available on the folklore and folklife of Roan Mountain. Among the types of documentation included in the evaluative report completed by the project are published articles, clippings, photographs, audiotapes, videotapes, and gravestone rubbings. Burton’s Spring 1992 American folklore class carried out the Roan Mountain American Folklife Survey. Class members tape-recorded interviews with Roan Mountain residents, transcribed the interviews, wrote analysis reports on the interviews, and documented cemeteries in Roan Mountain. Burton’s class completed its work in March 1992; Richard Blaustein , CASS, forwarded the final report to Kemp on November 24, 1992.

The collection includes written documentation which specifies project requirements and findings; interview transcriptions, analyses, releases, dub sheets, and biographical information sheets; and audiotapes of interviews. The collection focuses on reminiscences of residents of life in Roan Mountain, traditional music, and folklore.


  • 1991-1992


Conditions Governing Access

The papers are open for research.


2.00 Boxes (One Legal Manuscript Box [includes two 5 ½ inch open reel audiotapes], One Shoe Box [17 audio cassettes])

1.00 Boxes

1.00 Boxes

Language of Materials



The collection contains two series: Series 1, Project Requirements and Reports, 1992, and Series 2, American Folklore Class Materials, 1991-92.

Method of Acquisition

Jean H. Speer, director of the Center for Appalachian Studies and Services at East Tennessee State University (ETSU), donated five file folders on the Roan Mountain Project to the Archives of Appalachia on February 23, 1993. Thomas G. Burton, English department, ETSU, donated the audiotapes and three file folders of written documentation to the archives on February 24, 1992. Archives staff originally placed the Speer materials in Accession 251, Center for Appalachian Studies and Services Records, and the Burton materials in Accession 160, Thomas G. Burton Collection, but transferred all materials to the newly-created Roan Mountain Project Collection on October 5, 1993.

Processing Information

Processing of the collection was completed in 1998 by Marie Tedesco.
Marie Tedesco
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Archives of Appalachia Repository

PO Box 70295
344 J.L. Seehorn Jr. Rd.
Johnson City TN 37614 USA