Colonial History / Folklore and Ghost Stories / History / People

The Ordeal of Blood

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This historic practice goes by many names: Bier’s Test, Bier-Right, Trial by Touch, Ordeal of Blood, Blood-test, Covenanting by Blood, and many others that have been lost to time.

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Histories of Appalachian Peoples / History / People

Abijah Alley

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Abijah Alley, of Eighteenth Century Scott County, is one of the most difficult individuals to locate information on. Alley left a fantastic legacy that was still discussed in the late Nineteenth Century, even in the pages of the New York Times.

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Genealogy and DNA / History / People

A Suspected Tribute of… Respect?

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Obituaries in the Nineteenth Century are known for being incredibly long and affectionate. There is one obituary that is unbelievably so, so much so that the reader is left to wonder if the author was sincere, or just sarcastic.

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Genealogy and DNA / Histories of Appalachian Peoples / History / People

Ghosts in Dromgoole’s Closet

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Aside from the ridiculous racism and bigotry exhibited in her non-fiction works, there are many issues with Dromgoole’s material on both Melungeons and the mountain people. Most of the Melungeon articles come from the same original body of work.

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Histories of Appalachian Peoples / History / People

Will Allen Dromgoole and the Writing Life

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Dromgoole didn’t start writing until after her mother died in 1884. Her first book was The Sunny Side of the Cumberland, which was published in 1886.

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Genealogy and DNA / Histories of Appalachian Peoples / History / People

Will Allen Dromgoole (1860-1934)

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No series on Melungeons is complete without discussion on the individuals who kept history aware of them. This article covers a woman who is perhaps the strangest, most exploitative, and inconsistent writer on the matter:

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Crimes and Criminals / History / People / Virginia

Strange Cases of Kleptomania

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These Virginia thieves put the “mania” in kleptomania. The authorities were as amused by them as residents were annoyed with them.

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Genealogy and DNA / Histories of Appalachian Peoples / History / People

Melungeon DNA and the European Enigma

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Genetic genealogy through DNA testing, has sadly been harnessed to muddle the subject even more. Despite this field being in its infancy, global mapping has already occurred.

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Colonial History / History / People

The Carter Family’s Ordeal of Blood

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The body of a baby boy was found in Accomack County, in March  of 1679. It was buried in a blue blanket.

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