Southern Appalachian Digital Collections

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Elmeda Walker spinning

  • wcu_craft_revival-1071.jpg
  • This mounted photograph shows Elmeda Walker spinning on a big wheel outside of a mountain cabin in the late 1890s or early 1900s. Walker lived in Tennessee (or Elkin, North Carolina), just west of Allanstand, North Carolina; and Frances Goodrich often relied on Walker for information and help with starting Allanstand Cottage Industries. Walker was an expert production weaver and her work was used in the White House's Blue Mountain Room during Woodrow Wilson's presidency. A note on the back of the mount reads: "Mrs. Walker is now 86 yrs old and has just given up weaving but helps in the work of dyeing." The caption below the photograph reads: "Mrs. Elmeda Walker - 'a Master hand' at all the olden crafts." This picture is used in Goodrich's book "Mountain Homespun" where Mrs. Walker is identified as the fictional "Aunt Elvira." Photographs of Walker were often used in articles written by Goodrich and in the Allanstand shop brochures. The photographer is unknown.