[Group arrives at the Molasses stir-off]

Description

Photograph of a large group of friends and neighbors arriving at the molasses stir-off in Cumberland Gap, Tennessee. People would come from miles around to participate in the Molasses Making Stir-off every year. The stir-off was held either on the farm of Fred Whitaker about four miles southwest of Cumberland Gap, or on the farm of Baptist preacher the Rev. Hugh Vancel in Cumberland Gap proper. Narrative by Junebug Clark: Additional photos and information can be found in the pdf document "Joe Clark HBSS LIFE Magazine Photos" page 20. Also, November 13, 1950. Life Magazine pages 156-160. Stir-off Time in ... continued below

Physical Description

1 photograph : b&w ; 16 x 20 in.

Creation Information

Clark, Joe 194u.

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This photograph is part of the collection entitled: Clark Family Photography Collection and was provided by UNT Libraries Special Collections to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. More information about this photograph can be viewed below.

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Description

Photograph of a large group of friends and neighbors arriving at the molasses stir-off in Cumberland Gap, Tennessee. People would come from miles around to participate in the Molasses Making Stir-off every year. The stir-off was held either on the farm of Fred Whitaker about four miles southwest of Cumberland Gap, or on the farm of Baptist preacher the Rev. Hugh Vancel in Cumberland Gap proper. Narrative by Junebug Clark: Additional photos and information can be found in the pdf document "Joe Clark HBSS LIFE Magazine Photos" page 20. Also, November 13, 1950. Life Magazine pages 156-160. Stir-off Time in Tennessee. Fun Starts in Hills as Molasses Boils. People would come from miles around to participate in the Molasses Making Stir-off every year. The stir-off was held either on the farm of Fred Whitaker about four miles southwest of Cumberland Gap, or on the farm of Baptist preacher the Rev. Hugh Vancel in Cumberland Gap proper. Photo by: Joe Clark, HBSS.

Physical Description

1 photograph : b&w ; 16 x 20 in.

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Digitization of this item was sponsored by a grant from The Headliners Foundation.

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Clark Family Photography Collection

This seminal work of visual storytelling represents the extensive Clark family archives from the golden age of American photography. Their work has featured in Life Magazine, National Geographic, Look and Newsweek.

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[Arriving at the Stir-off] (Photograph)

[Arriving at the Stir-off]

Narrative by Junebug Clark in the summer of 2014 Friends and neighbors come from miles around to participate in the Molasses Making Stir-off. Overall Background: These Molasses Making Stir-off photos were shot by Joe Clark HBSS in the early to mid-1940s. Either on the farm of Fred Whitaker about four miles southwest of Cumberland Gap, or in Cumberland Gap on the farm of Baptist preacher the Rev. Hugh Vancel. More information about these images can be found in scrapbooks in the Clark Family Collection at the University of North Texas Special Collections Library. Specifically in a Detroit news pictorial article published December 13, 1942 titles "stir-off party" where mountaineers make molasses and merriment. Also in life magazine published November 13, 1950 [page 156] titled “Stir-off Time in Tennessee, Fun Starts in Hills as Molasses Boils.’ Also in the library is the NBC Today Show story on Joe Clark HBSS by Bob Dotson. It features Joe Clark returning to Cumberland Gap Tennessee to photograph a molasses stir off taking place in the same location as some of these photographs and attended by some of the same people in the early 1980s. Let me briefly set the scene of the time and era that these photos were made. World War II was raging. Television did not exist. Radio reception sporadic in this mountain country. School was held only three months a year mostly during the winter months. Most news of the changes in the outside world was learned, they say, “By looking at pictures in the Sears catalogs.” They farmed steep and rolling hillsides of very poor land. In most of America, to help in the war effort, the rationing of food and other essentials was prevalent. Very few of these Tennessee mountaineers and hill folk had homes with electricity. None with indoor plumbing. Water came from wells which was diverted from nearby streams. Heat in the winter months from a single fireplace. It is where Joe Clark, HBSS was born and raised. Now living in Detroit Michigan, he returned to photograph and capture the memories and the good times of the people he knew so well so well and to document their lives which he saw changing.

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ark:/67531/metadc286479

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Creation Date

  • 194u

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Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Feb. 26, 2015, 12:30 p.m.

Description Last Updated

  • June 22, 2017, 11:24 a.m.

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Citations, Rights, Re-Use

Clark, Joe. [Group arrives at the Molasses stir-off], photograph, 194u; (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc499791/: accessed December 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.