Saturday, August 18, 2012

South Mountain Language

To me, one of the fascinating aspects of this project has been uncovering the language of the South Mountains. I'm so glad I captured a bit of it because unfortunately, it's fading away.

So is the accent. No one I interviewed pronounced words in the old style. Children go to the county fair, not the county "far." Their parents change a flat tire, not a flat "tar." They carry in wood for the fire, not the "far." Wait, bad example. They don't carry wood anymore.

These old pronunciations have been replaced as the generations moved out into society and adapted, without even realizing it. Or as the older generations would say, without even realizing "hit."

But the beauty of the language is still there in the sentence structure and the old sayings. One man who moved into the community as a seven year old sixty years ago remembers laughing at the way people talked, but when I pressed him for examples, he couldn't tell me any. His statement, "I can't tell you because I say them now myself. They have become a part of me."

I did hear a couple from others. Like, raise the winder down. When the coal powered heating system over worked and the classroom became too hot, the teachers opened the windows, raised the winders up. When the room cooled too much, then they raised the winders down.

Going up highway 64. Both directions were up. East, go to Morganton. West, go to Rutherfordton. Either direction, the car would go up the road.

Sort of sad to lose a part of a community that makes it unique from the rest of the world.

Catch of the day,


No comments:

Post a Comment