MOUNTAIN GROWN MUSIC CELEBRATING THE TRADITIONAL MOUNTAIN MUSIC OF HAYWOOD COUNTY NORTH CAROLINA
Early in 1996, The Enterprise Mountaineer published a series of articles on 14 local musicians and dancers and later republished as a tabloid "Legends of Mountain Music". This series of articles prompted the Haywood County Public Library to establish a task force of interested community groups and musicians charged with establishing an archival and circulating collection of recorded music and memorabilia from Haywood's past and present traditional artists. The partners for this project were: The Friends of the Library, the Haywood County Arts Council, the Smoky Mountain Folk Festival, The Enterprise Mountaineer, the Waynesville Historical Society, and the Haywood County Public Library Foundation.
The task force, that included Ken Wilson, Scott McLeod, Roy "French" Kirkpatrick, Joe Sam Queen, Jim Trantham, Todd Callaway, Michael Beadle, Katherine Armitage, Michael Youngwood, and Jennifer Pratt, met and collected materials over the next two years. The archive includes videotaped interviews, tapes, records, cds, photographs and other materials showcasing the talents of Haywood County's traditional musicians, dancers, and artists. In July 1999, the "Homegrown Music; a Haywood County Tradition" project was accepted into the Library of Congress's Local Legacies project. The task force compiled a cross section of the archived music and video interviews. This compilation included a written report, a copy of the Enterprise Mountaineer tabloid, and extensive liner notes.
The "Homegrown Music" compilation brought the task force to the vision of a "Mountain Grown Music" website. The committee envisioned a site that would describe the area, telling the history of aural and oral traditions, and underlining the impact of this heritage upon the community. The Haywood County Library Director, Jennifer Pratt, received a LSTA grant from the State Library of North Carolina to digitize this collection and launch a website on the Internet. The entire collection is held at the Haywood County Public Library.