Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Archie Green, who died last week, documented the culture of work, especially rural

Archie Green, who passed away March 22, studied and promoted the lives of working people in America. "For five decades he studied hillbilly music and pile-drivers’ tales," writes Julie Ardery of the Daily Yonder, who worked with Green. "He made inventories of 'tin men' – the showpieces of sheet metal workers -- and analyzed sailors’ slang. He recorded songs by millworkers and miners’ wives." (Photo by Jerry Telfer, San Francisco Chronicle)

Green worked until near the end of his life, writing articles and publishing books, which included Only a Miner, a study of coal-mining music. His lobbying of Congress lead to the creation of the National Folklife Center and inspired others to "join him in documenting the culture of working people," adds Ardery. “Many of us owe him a huge debt,” wrote filmmaker Mimi Pickering, of Appalshop in Whitesburg, Ky. “We will not see the likes of him again.” (Read more)

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