Cabbagetown, Mothman Returns And Appalachian Spiritualism


This week, we travel to Cabbagetown — an Atlanta neighborhood that was home to Appalachian workers who migrated there for textile jobs.

We also tag along with Coal, a dog with a big job in a southern West Virginia elementary school.

And just in time for the spooky season, we hear about Mountain Cove, a community of spiritualists who came to West Virginia in 1850.

You’ll hear these stories and more this week, Inside Appalachia.

In This Episode:


Atlanta, Georgia isn’t included in the Appalachian Regional Commission, but a lot of Appalachians have moved to Atlanta for work, bringing with them their culture.

After the American Civil War, droves of Appalachian workers migrated to a mill town in the middle of Atlanta, eventually called Cabbagetown.

A Dog Day Afternoon

Dogs are our constant companions. They protect us, keep us company and even provide a set of eyes when we can’t see. Now, therapy dogs are going into schools to help counsel and comfort stressed students.

This year, West Virginia launched the Friends with Paws pilot project in state public schools. Liz McCormick takes us to Welch Elementary in McDowell County to meet the very first dog sent out as part of that program.

The Mothman

There are plenty of cryptids across Appalachia — but the most famous, by far, is West Virginia’s Mothman.

Since his first sighting in 1966, the Mothman has grown into a pop culture, appearing in books, comics and video games. A new movie, “Return of the Mothman,” is out now. Bill Lynch spoke with the film director Herb Gardner about why people are still interested in the Mothman.

Hungry For Humans

The Mothman isn’t the only monster from the mountain state. Earlier this year, Folkways reporter Clara Haizlett reported on Hungry for Humans, a board game that matches West Virginia’s favorite cryptids with some of its favorite places to eat.

Hungry for Humans

Clara Haizlett
West Virginia Public Broadcasting
Jared Kaplan holds the game he designed with Chris Kincaid.

Mediums And Spiritualism In Western Virginia And West Virginia

Spiritualism is a metaphysical idea that people can communicate with the dead. It first rose to prominence in America in the mid-1800s and has gone in and out of style over the following generations.

Scott Worley collects spooky stories and gives ghost tours in southern West Virginia. He told us about what spiritualism looked like in West Virginia in the 19th and early 20th centuries.


Our theme music is by Matt Jackfert. Other music this week was provided by Lucero, Tyler Childers, The Company Stores, Larry Groce, and Del McCoury.

Bill Lynch is our producer. Our executive producer is Eric Douglas. Kelley Libby is our editor. Our audio mixer is Patrick Stephens. Zander Aloi also helped produce this episode.

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