By Katrina M. Powell
With the Commonwealth of Virginia's Public Park Condemnation Act of 1928, the
nation surveyed for and purchased 3 thousand tracts of land that might develop into Shenandoah
nationwide Park. The Commonwealth condemned the houses of 5 hundred households in order that their land
may be "donated" to the government and put below the auspices of the nationwide Park
provider. triggered via the condemnation in their land, the citizens begun writing letters to
nationwide Park and different executive officers to barter their rights and to request various
companies, estate, and harvests. often represented within the well known media as lawless,
illiterate, and incompetent, those mountaineers turn out themselves differently during this poignant
selection of letters. The heritage advised by way of the citizens themselves either provides to and counters
the tale that's normally permitted approximately them.
These letters are
housed within the Shenandoah nationwide Park files in Luray, Virginia, which was once opened in brief to
the general public from 2000 to 2002, yet then closed as a result of loss of investment. this feature of roughly
one hundred fifty of those letters, of their entirety, makes those records to be had back not just to the
public but in addition to students, researchers, and others drawn to the region's historical past, in the
politics of the park, and within the family tree of the households. Supplementing the letters are
introductory textual content, photos, annotation, and oral histories that additional rfile the lives
of those individuals.
Read or Download "Answer at Once": Letters of Mountain Families in Shenandoah National Park, 1934-1938 PDF
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