In 1916, British song collector Cecil Sharp traveled to the United States to explore folk traditions in the Appalachians. During his time, Sharp knocked on the doors of homes, interviewing Appalachian residents and listening to their songs. He documented hundreds of folk ballads that would eventually influence a folk-revival in both England and the U.S.
While the music Sharp collected is well-documented, the photographs he took along the way have relatively remained in the shadows. A new exhibit showcases the images Sharp captured during his time in Appalachia. The exhibit is on display at Through This Lens gallery in Durham through Saturday, Feb 11.
Host Frank Stasio talks with Donald Hughes, project coordinator for the Cecil Sharp in Appalachia Project, about Sharp’s legacy in folklore. Musician Joe Penland also performs songs from Sharp’s collection on guitar and vocals.