This past weekend, I participated in the fourth “Tales of the Cumberlands” event held at Breaks Interstate Park in Dickenson County, VA and on the Kentucky border.
I was asked last year to participate but had to pull out due to other obligations but this year, the event organizer, Stevie Conley asked me to try again and present a informational session on my direct line, great-great grandfather, Andrew Jackson Mullins or better known as “Brandy Jack”, a famed counterfeiter from the late 19th Century from Appalachia.
My Mullins family connection from L-R: Andrew Jackson Mullins, my great-great grandfather, David A.J. Mullins, my great grandfather, James Russell Mullins, my grandfather and Roscoe Mullins, my father.
When I started “Appalachian Chained”, I stepped outside my comfort zone.
I internalized a lot of issues, many of them dealing with Appalachia and life until after encouragement from friends and family, I decided to start putting them down online in the blog.
It hasn’t been easy writing the blog. I’ve had to carefully choose subjects, sometimes I have ranted, other times, I have tried to combine my love for history, Appalachia and other interests together into the blog.
But this weekend, I’m getting ready to step outside my comfort zone once again, this time to speak on the life and times of my great-great grandfather and his place in Appalachian/Cumberland culture along with such names as “Devil John Wright, Doc Taylor, “The Red Fox of the Cumberlands”, The Melungeons, and much more.
And once again, I think I may have bitten off more than I can chew on these roots in Appalachia.