Hutchins Library
Special Collections & Archives
Guide to the Southern Appalachian Studies Records (1962 Regional Survey)

Accession Number: 3
Southern Appalachian Studies Records (1962 Regional Survey)
Papers: 1956-1962
Linear Feet 72
Online Catalog Record (BANC)

Overview & Series Description
Series I- Interdenominational Conference 1956-1957
Series II - Weatherford Correspondence 1958-1965
Series III - Board of Directors Correspondence 1958-1962
Series IV - Ford Foundation
Series V - Religion
        Boxes 35-78 | Boxes 79-97
Series VI - Writers' Conference
Series VII - Urban Planning
Series VIII - Education
Series IX - Health, Welfare, and Local Government
Series X - Agriculture
Series XI - Industrialization
Series XII - Folk Arts
Series XIII - Tourism and Attitude Survey
Series XIV - Household Survey
Series XV - Codes
Series XVI - Finance
Series XVII - Miscellaneous Papers
Series XVIII - Newspaper Clippings
Series XIX - Card Files
Series XX - Highway Maps - Oversize
Series XXI - Tabulation sheets and IBM cards - Oversize
Non-manuscript Material

Overview of the Collection

The records of the Southern Appalachian Studies (1962 Regional Survey) were given to Berea College by various survey participants during the period 1962 - 1977 and were opened for research in 1980. The major restriction placed upon the collection involves the protection of confidentiality of the survey interviewees: written acknowledgement of responsibility in honoring confidentiality will be required of all researchers before access to the survey collection can be given.

The survey resulted from the 1956 Interdenominational Conference of Religious Workers' determination that there was inadequate information available to develop an effective course of action addressed to the broad of problems plaguing the Appalachian region and its people. The conference of representatives from major church bodies had originally been called together by Dr. Willis D. Weatherford, Sr., to discuss these problems and to plan programs orientated to upgrading the quality of education and religion in the area. The conference delegates approached Dr. Francis Hutchins, President of Berea College, to ask for the use of office facilities for the purpose of establishing headquarters and gathering data on the Appalachian region. With Dr. Hutchins' approval, Dr. Weatherford and Dr. Rupert Vance compiled a comprehensive list of Southern Appalachian Studies research projects and recruited staff members from the region's universities, colleges, and government agencies to implement the project. The studies were financed primarily by a $250,000 grant from the Ford Foundation with additional expenses being defrayed from the cash and services contributed by the area's churches and educational institutions, raised largely through Dr. Weatherford's personal efforts.

The main purpose of the project was to gather, analyze, and publish data relating to the region so that people of the Appalachian area could better understand their own worth and ability as well as inform the federal government about the level of poverty and lack of economic opportunity in the region. The studies were to: (1) examine the changes in Appalachia since the 1935 United States Department of Agriculture study of the area; (2) determine the educational, religious, and social influences of the region; (3) study church conditions and the differences between urban and rural churches; (4) study the attitudes towards increased industrialization; (5) assess the immediate needs of the people; (6) contribute toward the capability of social agencies to meet the needs of the people.

The organization of the Southern Appalachian Studies consisted of a sponsoring committee, the central staff, and the research staff. The sponsoring committee became the Board of Directors upon incorporation, and was made up of denominational representatives, university representatives, a Berea College representative, and a representative of the Council of the Southern Mountains. The central staff consisted of W.D. Weatherford, Sr., Director of Administration; Howard Beers (and later Thomas R. Ford), Director of General Research; Earl D.C. Brewer, Director of Religious Research; and Rupert Vance, Research Consultant. The research staff was headed by project directors for each section of the survey who worked somewhat independently of the central staff and each other. In the words of Thomas R. Ford, "The guiding philosophy was to find a good scholar, give him a fairly clear idea of the problems to be investigated, and turn him loose."

The results of the study were published in the form of two books, The Southern Appalachian Region: A Survey (1962), edited by Thomas R. Ford, and an accompanying "layman's interpretation," Life and Religion in Southern Appalachia (1962), by W.D. Weatherford, Sr., and Earl Brewer. The Ford publication was divided into five topical areas: "The Passing of Provincialism," "The Changing Population," "The Changing Economy," "The Changing Society," "Folk Arts in Transition." The Weatherford -- Brewer book was designed for use by church discussion groups of various denominations to promote awareness of these problems and opportunities of the region.

The collection has been divided into two categories: General Administrative Records and Project Records. The first category, General Administrative Records, includes Series I - IV and covers the conception, planning, and organizational material of the Board of Directors. The largest portion of the first category consists of the files and correspondence of W.D. Weatherford, Sr., Director of Administration. The Project Records section includes Series V - XIV and contains records of each area of research, raw survey data, and associated correspondence. The remaining Series (XV - XXI) include the more general aspects of the study such as clippings, card files, oversized tabulation sheets, general finance, and research coding. There are also tapes, recorded (Boxes 166- 180) with transcriptions placed in Series V - Religion Research.

Series Description
180 Manuscript Boxes

Series I Interdenominational Conference, 1956-1957 Boxes 1-4

This series includes minutes, notebooks, reports, handbooks, contracts, and correspondence of W.D. Weatherford, Sr. The Ford Foundation prospectus, project history, and other related papers are also included. The major portion of this material gives an account of the formative period of the studies, which evolved from the conference.

Series II Weatherford Correspondence, 1958-1965 Boxes 5-30

This series is arranged chronologically then alphabetically, and incorporates the administrative business and the research topic plans of the studies. Also included is the correspondence of the administrative secretary and contributors along with the miscellaneous documents pertaining to the source materials used by the studies. Five audio tapes related to a research staff meeting, dated June 12, 1959, are located separately in the Berea College Appalachian Archives. NOTE: Certain miscellaneous documents have become separated from the original Weatherford correspondence they were once matched with, particularly items ranging from A-G. Reference to these items may be made in the Weatherford correspondence. These materials have been collected and are located in Box 14 following the correspondence.

Series III Board of Directors' Correspondence, 1958-1962 Boxes 31-33
The correspondence of the various directors of the Southern Appalachian Studies is included in this series along with progress reports and newspaper articles. The contents of these boxes are arranged primarily in chronological order, and otherwise alphabetically.

Series IV Ford Foundation Box 34

This section of the collection contains the financial information for the Southern Appalachian Studies. Material related to a tour of the Appalachian region by Northern industrialists is included along with miscellaneous correspondence from persons who expressed interest in the studies. This series is arranged alphabetically and/or chronologically.

Series V Religion Boxes 35-97

Included in this series is the religious survey material pertaining to the Southern Appalachian Studies. The field workers' notebooks and survey schedules are also located in this section of the collection -- along with a copy of the book Life and Religion in Southern Appalachia, co-authored by E.D.C. Brewer and W.D. Weatherford, Sr. Various other materials, such as religious correspondence, lectures, and material related to the Lake Junaluska conference, are included in this series. The typewritten transcripts of interviews with ministers, laypersons, and church groups recorded on audio tapes are included here. The tapes are located separately at the end of the collection. Box 62 contains a complete listing of tape codes and transcripts. NOTE: The boxes of tabulations from the religious survey are stored at the end of the collection.

Series VI Writer's Conference Boxes 98-101

Included in this series is the organizational material related to the conference for regional authors sponsored by the Southern Appalachian Studies. Also placed in this series are a list of the names of the mountain writers, manuscripts, and bibliographies of the literature of Appalachia, and the study of regional libraries. Five audio tapes of the conference dated July 20-21, 1959, are located separately in the Southern Appalachian Archives of Berea College.

Series VII Urban Planning Boxes 102-106

The questionnaires related to the urban survey sponsored by the southern Appalachian Studies are in this series along with the computer sheets and instructions. Also included in this section is material concerning the Urban Adjustment Workshop, the tour of the region by business and professional participants from the workshop, and a social study. Four audio tapes of the Urban Adjustment Workshop tour briefing, dated July 13-14, 1959, are located separately in the Southern Appalachian Archives of Berea College.

Series VIII Education Box 107

The Southern Appalachian Studies' plans to research the educational status of the Appalachian region are included in this series. Correspondence between the studies' staff and the area's superintendents of education and school principals are also included, along with an evaluation of the Report of Education.

Series IX Health, Welfare, and Local Government Boxes 108-109

The correspondence between county health officers of different states or various organizations involved in the implementation of the studies' findings and the Southern Appalachian Studies is included in this series, as well as manuscripts and publications related to the subject of health care. Five audio tapes of the September 18-19, 1959 implementation meeting are located separately in Box 166 (AS/OR 01-1, 01-2,01-3,01-4, 01-5). The tabulation is located in Boxes 162-165.

Series X Agriculture Box 110

This series consists mainly of correspondence between the Southern Appalachian Studies and regional home and farm demonstration agents or soil conservation agents. One manuscript related to area farming is included here also. NOTE: Oversized items are at the end of this collection.

Series XI Industrialization Box 111

Two manuscripts, miscellaneous reports, news clippings, and correspondence comprise this series along with the project plans of the Southern Appalachian Studies.

Series XII Folk Arts Box 112

This series incorporates a questionnaire, a manuscript, various pamphlets concerning dances, music, games, correspondence, and regional study either initiated by the Southern Appalachian Studies or received by the Southern Appalachian Studies.

Series XIII   Tourism and Attitude Survey   Boxes 113-114

Material related to the attitude survey - raw data, tabulations, coded schedules, and interpretations - are included in this series along with a couple of items on Southern Appalachian tourism.

Series XIV Household Survey Boxes 115-144

The questionnaire used in the survey and the raw data collected related to the household survey are located in this series as is a brief summary report. The material is organized by state, county, and/or city, and date.

Series XV Codes Boxes 145-146

This series includes the key to the IBM programming and the code keys for the following survey tabulations: household, religion, industry, and education. (Oversized tabulations are contained in Series XXI.)

Series XVI Finance Boxes 147-149

These boxes contain paid bills, financial planning from the Interdenominational Conference of 1962, contribution records, and conference financial records.

Series XVII Miscellaneous Box 150

This series contains a variety of pamphlets and other literature from outside sources that were consulted in the preparation of the different projects of the Southern Appalachian Studies. Folder 12 contains Senate and House Bills concerning Appalachia and employment.

Series XVIII News Clippings Box 151

Arranged in chronological order from 1957 to 1968, this series includes news articles, from both local and national papers, related to the studies.

Series XIX Card Files Boxes 152-159

This series includes the mailing lists used by the Southern Appalachian Studies for the following groups: general, conference attendants by conference, newspaper editors, educators, board members, resource persons, and research applicants.

Series XX Highway Maps Boxes 160-161

Arranged by states, the maps included in this series are both highway and topographical maps that were used in the research and travel phases of the Southern Appalachian Studies, along with some statistical maps.

Series XXI Tabulation Sheets and IBM Cards- Oversized Boxes 162-165

Included in this series are the tabulation sheets used in compiling and analyzing the survey data by the Southern Appalachian Studies along with one set of keypunched IBM cards. Also included in this series are the maps related to the agriculture or farm survey conducted by the studies.

Non-manuscript Material Open Reel Tapes Boxes 166-180

The tapes were recorded as part of the religious survey. The tapes of general interest include central staff and research staff meetings, implementation meetings, the Appalachian tour briefing, Writer's Conference, and the National Council of the Churches of Christ in America meeting. Additionally, other tapes include church meetings, layperson discussion, and minister discussions. Transcriptions of these tapes are located in Series V, and Box 62 contains the codes and listings for these taped interviews. Note: An * denotes that the reels marked have no available transcriptions.

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