On fall break from college in the early 1980s, a writer and his loyal English setter took a road trip from Watauga County to the Qualla Boundary, accompanied by the sweet sounds of fiddles, banjos, and high-lonesome harmonies.
In Pitt County, a luthier’s handcrafted guitars are sometimes discolored or full of knots; some are shaped liked snakes or shotguns. Each instrument’s story starts with the wood used to make it. And while the past may have left its scars, beauty can be found in the sights and sounds of art.
For Black families in the 1950s, the ribbons of asphalt that crisscross our state could be dangerous obstacle courses: Most hotels and other businesses denied African-Americans basic services. Many travelers of color looked to the Green Book to find safety on the open road and community in our towns and cities.