Sense of Place Archive

What the Children Will Expect of Us: A Living Room Conversation

Last week a coalition of several organizations and individuals across the south launched a media campaign calling on white people in small towns and rural areas to stand up against white supremacy and break through the cultures of silence surrounding race and racism. Our media campaign is just the first step in our collective long
Category: Arkansas

Honoring Local Women’s Stories: Storytelling and Oral History Event at the McElroy House

    Growing up in an intergenerational family with my grandmother in the home, family gatherings and daily life were filled with stories about the lives of people who had long since passed on. Likewise, the landscape was marked by these stories. I knew that my grandfather made a home on what is now a
Category: Arkansas

Running Dry: A Creek Discovery

The Backyard Living column is a regular feature in ABOUT the River Valley magazine and a partnership between this site, A View from the Backroads, and the McElroy House: Organization for Cultural Resources and Community Action. This column originally ran in the June issue ofABOUT the River Valley Magazine.  All columns in this series are written by Meredith Martin-Moats. Click here to learn
Category: ABOUT the River Valley

Muzzled Oxen Part 2: The Price of Cotton

Last month we explored a recent book published by the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies entitled Muzzled Oxen: Reaping Cotton and Sowing Hope in 1920s Arkansas. Written by the late Genevieve Grant Sadler of California, the memoir explores her years in Yell County Arkansas where her family worked the cotton fields outside of Dardanelle. The
Category: African American History

Muzzled Oxen: Reaping Cotton and Sowing Hope in 1920s Arkansas, Part 1

A recent book published by Butler Center Books, the publishing arm of the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies, examines life in the Yell County cotton fields in the 1920s. Written by the late Genevieve Grant Sadler, Muzzled Oxen: Reaping Cotton and Sowing Hope in 1920s Arkansas is a captivating memoir drawn from letters Sadler wrote
Category: Arkansas

Staring at the Snails

The Backyard Living column is a partnership between ABOUT the River Valley magazine, A View from the Backroads, and the McElroy House: Organization for Cultural Resources and Community Action. This column originally ran in the May issues of ABOUT the River Valley Magazine.  All columns in this series are written by Meredith Martin-Moats. For more information about subscription information
Category: ABOUT the River Valley

Wildflowers and the Discernment of Weeds

Just this past year I’ve noticed my four- year old sons are starting to learn how to distinguish the differences in plants. They’re excited about the coming of spring and ready to work in the garden. After spending a great deal of time with the leaves this past fall, they’ve begun to notice the subtleties
Category: Arkansas

Loving Place, Culture, and Identity: A Recollection of Another Folklore Conference

Contributor Nic Hartmann recently attended the annual meeting of the American Folklore Society and offers this discussion of two powerful presentations, reminding readers what it means to love the local and the importance of translating conferences addresses into everyday action.   Were you at AFS this year? We’d love to hear your thoughts on these talks
Category: Community Action

Living the Deliberate Life: The Larger Story Behind Billy Reeder’s Cabin

  This piece was originally published in the November 2013 issue of ABOUT the River Valley magazine. Learn more about ABOUT the River Valley magazine here.    Hand sewn from local pine and oak, Billy Reeder’s 880 square foot log cabin took four years to build. Located on the family farm in rural Perry County, the home sits
Category: Arkansas

“What Could be the Meaning or Use of Such Love?”: Berry’s “A Native Hill.”

I recently reread Wendell Berry’s essay, “A Native Hill,” a winding exploration of home, the importance of knowing a place deeply, and our collective responsibilities to the land.  Born in 1934, Berry is a novelist, cultural critic, and a farmer who lives on his family’s land in Kentucky. Best known for his direct and eloquent
Category: Connection to Land/Place