The Great Depression hit rural Appalachia especially hard. One program designed to both create jobs and promote literacy in the area was the WPA’s Library Services Program. But unlike librarians in other parts of the nation, in the hills and hollers of Eastern Kentucky, “book women” had to figure out how to serve patrons who had no roads leading to their homes. Their solution? The packhorse library.
Appalachia is an area as proud and unique as its name, which true locals will insist is pronounced “Apple-at-cha,” not the oft-used “App-a-lay-sha.” While the Appalachian Mountains stretch from Canada to the southern United States, Appalachia as a region is one of the most widely-contested borders. Attempts to construct an accurate map have led to heated online discussions and multiple revisions. A consensus, however, is that the cultural region of Appalachia encompasses parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, the Carolinas, Georgia, and Alabama. But when most of us think of “typical” Appalachia, the sparsely populated, rugged mountains, it’s “Holler Land” that is on our minds. This patchwork of hills and hollers is located at the very heart of Appalachia, in East Kentucky. Hollers, or hollows, are small, sheltered valleys that usually have waterways running through them. They consist of tiny settlements of one or more households connected by some sort of passable trail, typically the bed of a creek.
Appalachian hollers are largely inhospitable, not great for farming, difficult to travel during most of the year, and full of dangerous animals. Once home to the S’atsovaha (Yuchi) people and other indigenous groups, the area became home to families scrapping out a hardscrabble existence following the Indian Removal Act. When the Great Depression hit a century later, most of Appalachia was already profoundly impoverished. Families relied on mines and mills for employment, where men worked in absolutely appalling conditions and were often paid in funds that could only be spent at the company store. Women toiled over barren garden plots, trying to grow enough food to feed their families through the winter. Children usually remained at home-there were few laws about school attendance, and those that existed were not enforced. The schools that did exist were difficult for most children to access, lacked qualified teachers, and rarely had any books. Children were dying en-masse from starvation and disease. The idea of reading for information or pleasure was a notion far removed from most Appalachians’ minds. Survival was all-consuming.
In the 1930s, to combat the widespread unemployment and poverty of the Great Depression, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt introduced the New Deals. The New Deals were a series of programs, reforms, and regulations enacted to target what historians refer to as the “3 Rs;” relief for the unemployed and poor, recovery of the economy, and reform of the financial systems. These changes were aimed at getting a nation back on its feet and preventing another depression. One of the agencies established under the New Deal was the Works Progress Administration or WPA. The purpose of the WPA was to provide jobs for unemployed heads of households in fields that would benefit society: building infrastructures like roads and bridges, parks, airports, and housing. Now-famous WPA projects include Los Angeles’ Griffith Observatory, San Antonio’s Riverwalk, and Timberline Lodge in Oregon’s Mount Hood National Forest.
While the WPA created thousands of new jobs for men, Elanor Roosevelt worried that it overlooked women. Not one to sit around and stew, she set about organizing programs that would employ females. One such agency that garnered possibility was the Library Services Program. At the time, it was estimated that one-third of the U.S. population did not have reasonable access to library services. The Library Services Program was unique in its funding, which created a serious challenge: there was money for employment but none for materials. The task of obtaining materials, sorting logistics, and arranging for services fell entirely on the brand-new, almost entirely female workforce of the Library Services Program. Creative solutions began blossoming everywhere. Librarians collaborated with local PTAs and Boy Scout troops to raise money. They collected discarded books from public libraries and painstakingly repaired them. They wrote letters to people with influence and money all across the country, asking for donations. Once the books began arriving, they found places to store them. Post offices, general stores, and churches donated space for the mini-libraries. And then there was the task of delivering the books. A librarian loaded a houseboat full of books to deliver up and down the Yazoo River in Mississippi. Bookmobiles trundled across counties to provide reading materials to suburbs and cities alike. And in the most rugged and inaccessible part of the country, the hills and holler of Eastern Kentucky, the packhorse library was born.
Variations of packhorse libraries had existed before, most notably in Paintsville, Kentucky. In 1913, a woman named May F. Stafford convinced a local coal baron to fund a horseback library, but after only a year of programming, the baron died, and the library was left penniless. In the early 1920s, a group of students from Brea College braved the roads of Appalachia with a wagon full of books. And in 1934, a presbyterian minister in Leslie County offered the WPA use of his community center to build a library, provided they could fund salaries for the librarians. This was the beginning of the first successful run of a packhorse library, and it was so successful that just two years later, there were eight such libraries in operation across Eastern Kentucky. Unlike libraries in other areas, these minuscule lending repositories were not meant to be visited by patrons. Few people would have braved the rugged terrain to reach them. Instead, librarians delivered from them on horseback.
Each packhorse library branch was run by a head librarian responsible for processing donations, repairing books, and arranging delivery schedules. She oversaw four to ten book carriers, or “book women” as they became known, per library. The book women would visit the library monthly, assisting in clerical tasks and collecting materials for the next few weeks. Many book women also had their own “outpost” libraries closer to their delivery routes, where smaller amounts of books could be stored to avoid the long trip to the main library to replenish supplies as often. Book women earned a salary of $28 a month, just shy of $500 today adjusted for inflation. It wasn’t going to make anyone rich, but it provided desperately needed money to hundreds of Appalachian families. They earned every penny of it.
Book carriers’ routes were typically between 100 and 120 miles long, and they covered the entirety of their route at least twice a month. The horses or mules ridden by the women carried about 100 books in special saddlebags called panniers. The animals were either from the book women’s own family or were rented for a few dollars each month. The women rode their routes year-round, regardless of the weather. Conditions could be treacherous, and they often led their horses for miles in places it was too steep to ride, crossed rivers in rowboats, and waded through snow and floodwaters. Their days were long, with carriers using every second of daylight to complete their routes. Book women delivered to homes and schools and were typically the only source of literature for both.
Packhorse librarians faced numerous challenges, aside from the weather, terrain, and lack of materials. Their patrons were initially highly resistant to their services altogether. Most holler folks did not like accepting anything from the government, and many viewed reading as a waste of time. The librarians worked tirelessly to earn their trust, beginning with visits to read from the Bible, then introducing them to other materials that were instructive and useful, like recipe books, outdoors magazines, and church pamphlets. Finally, with some families, the librarians introduced books that people simply enjoyed reading-novels, poetry, short stories. That packhorse librarians could turn non-readers into avid book lovers with only a minuscule collection of used books is truly amazing.
To stretch their small collections, packhorse librarians began making their own volumes to be loaned. They collected articles from worn magazines, tidbits from pamphlets from local health agencies, church bulletins, and other materials and put them into scrapbooks, which could then be loaned and circulated like books. The scrapbooks quickly grew in popularity and became a snapshot of Appalachia itself. The holler people were well known to dislike accepting anything without giving in return. They filled librarians’ scrapbooks with their family recipes, instructions for completing household tasks, quilt patterns, family stories, and more. Soon the knowledge that had once been contained to a single holler was spreading across the Appalachian mountains at the speed of a librarian on a book-laden mule.
“ ‘Bring me a book to read!’ is the cry of every child as he runs to meet the librarian with whom he has become acquainted. Not a certain book, but any kind of book. The child has read none of them.”-unamed member of the WPA packhorse program
For her stunning tome on the WPA Packhorse Librarians, Down Cut Shin Creek, author Kathi Appelt interviewed former librarian Grace Caudill Lucas. Grace tells a familiar story for many women who took advantage of the exhausting but rewarding work. While in her twenties, Grace was abandoned by her husband and left with two children and no income. She first accepted employment with the WPA Sewing Project but could not resist the appeal (and higher pay) of the Packhorse program. For Grace, a typical day began at 4:30 am, when she would get herself ready for the day before waking and feeding her children. She then bundled them off to their grandmother’s house, saddled her horse, and began her route just as the sun was rising. She rode twenty to thirty miles each day on deer trails, rocky creek beds, and forest paths. Once, a plunge into an icy creek left her feet frozen to her stirrups. She finished her route around dusk when she would collect her children, put them to bed, and complete all her household tasks before collapsing onto her pillow for a few hours’ sleep. Despite the difficulty of the job, Grace was thankful for it. She told Appelt, “In the Depression, times were tough. Many a night, my children and me went to bed with just milk and bread for supper, and it’s still good enough for me.”
In addition to providing hundreds of women with much-needed paying work, the WPA Packhorse Library program had an incredible impact on the hollers of rural Appalachia. By the program’s second year, library circulation had reached 60,000 books per month across thirty counties. In all, it is estimated that the program served over one and a half million people and covered nearly half of the state of Kentucky, with just under a thousand book women to thank. Packhorse librarians also served purposes beyond the intention of the WPA. They were sent for doctors and midwives when they arrived in a holler in need of help. They delivered mail along the route. They delivered medicine from local doctors and brought news of births and deaths to isolated families. They became a lifeline, connecting Appalachians in ways that had never been possible.
In 1941, FDR began dismantling the WPA, believing its purpose had been fully achieved. By late 1942, wartime production jobs were employing millions. In April of 1943, the Packhorse Library officially ran out of funding, and the program ended. Most librarians returned to their homes or took teaching jobs. Some continued as librarians, using the physical library locations the WPA had built in some communities. But the discontinuation of the program left the rural Appalachians with no library service until paved roads began arriving in the area over a decade later. In 1956, Kentucky Representative Carl D. Perkins introduced legislation that provided the first federal funding to public libraries. The budget specifically supported bookmobile services for remote communities across the nation. An Appalachian himself, who attended a one-room schoolhouse served by book women, Perkins credited the packhorse librarians of Eastern Kentucky for his lifelong support of libraries. The following year, the Kentucky Department of Libraries received federal funding. Library extension programs resumed with bookmobiles rolling into the very hollers that book women had once served with panniers stuffed with used books and self-made scrapbooks. According to the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Kentucky’s public libraries had 75 bookmobiles as of 2014- the largest number in the nation.
If you are as bewitched by the WPA Packhorse Librarians as I am, here are some recommendations on further reading to help you get your fill:
Fiction about packhorse librarians
The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes
From the publisher: Alice Wright marries handsome American Bennett Van Cleve hoping to escape her stifling life in England. But small-town Kentucky quickly proves equally claustrophobic, especially living alongside her overbearing father-in-law. So when a call goes out for a team of women to deliver books as part of Eleanor Roosevelt’s new traveling library, Alice signs on enthusiastically.
The leader, and soon Alice’s greatest ally, is Margery, a smart-talking, self-sufficient woman who’s never asked a man’s permission for anything. They will be joined by three other singular women who become known as the Packhorse Librarians of Kentucky.
What happens to them–and to the men they love–becomes an unforgettable drama of loyalty, justice, humanity and passion. These heroic women refuse to be cowed by men or by convention. And though they face all kinds of dangers in a landscape that is at times breathtakingly beautiful, at others brutal, they’re committed to their job: bringing books to people who have never had any, arming them with facts that will change their lives.
The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson
From the publisher: NEW YORK TIMES and LOS ANGELES TIMES and USA TODAY bestselling novel, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek is a powerful message about how the written word affects people–a story of hope and heartbreak, raw courage and strength splintered with poverty and oppression, and one woman’s chances beyond the darkly hollows.
Inspired by the true and historical, blue-skinned people of Kentucky and the brave and dedicated Kentucky Pack Horse library service, The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek showcases a first in traditionally published literary novels— a bold and unique story and tale of fierce strength and one woman’s belief that books can carry us anywhere — even back home.
The Book Woman’s Daughter by Kim Michele Richardson (release date May 3, 2022)
From the publisher: New York Times and Los Angeles Times bestselling historical fiction author Kim Michele Richardson is back with both the stand-alone and sequel to The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek. The Book Woman’s Daughter is the perfect book club read following Honey Lovett, the daughter of the beloved Troublesome book woman, who must fight for her own independence with the help of the brave and extraordinary Appalachian women of Kentucky who guide her and the books that can set her free.
The Librarian of Boone’s Hollow by Kim Vogel Sawyer
From the publisher: During the Great Depression, city-dweller Addie Cowherd dreams of becoming a novelist and offering readers the escape that books had given her during her tragic childhood. When her father loses his job, she is forced to take the only employment she can find—delivering books on horseback to poor coal-mining families in the hills of Kentucky.
But turning a new page will be nearly impossible in Boone’s Hollow, where residents are steeped in superstitions and deeply suspicious of outsiders. Even local Emmett Tharp feels the sting of rejection after returning to the tiny mountain hamlet as the first in his family to graduate college. And as the crippled economy leaves many men jobless, he fears his degree won’t be worth much in a place where most men either work the coal mine or run moonshine.
As Addie also struggles to find her place, she’ll unearth the truth about a decades-old rivalry. But when someone sets out to sabotage the town’s library program, will the culprit chase Addie away or straight into the arms of the only person who can help her put a broken community back together?
Fiction about unusual librarians and bookshops
The Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan
From Kirkus: What’s a shy English librarian to do when she’s downsized out of a job and her only hope for remaining employed is to become a social media–savvy coordinator of online content?For 29-year-old Nina, it’s time to pursue her dream of opening a small bookshop. After all, since no one reads anymore, the library system is practically throwing away its books, and no will mind if Nina rescues them like orphans and finds them new homes. Certainly her roommate, the beautiful Surinder, will be pleased to rid their apartment of the architecture-imperiling weight of piles of novels. But real estate is expensive, so Nina decides to buy a van and travel around in a mobile bookstore. She locates the perfect vehicle in Kirrinfief, Scotland, where her real adventures begin. Soon enough, she’s relocated to the Highlands, and her life is newly populated with delightfully quirky characters, including Marek, a Latvian train engineer and romantic hero, who begins exchanging love letters and books of poetry with Nina on a tree at a railway crossing; Ainslee, a mercurial teenage girl eager for a job yet wary of revealing anything about her home life; and Lennox, Nina’s grumpy landlord, who’s separated from his posh wife and who increasingly occupies Nina’s thoughts. Amid the gorgeous scenery of Scotland, Nina sets out to find the right book for everyone in her new town.
The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George
From the publisher: Monsieur Perdu can prescribe the perfect book for a broken heart. But can he fix his own? Monsieur Perdu calls himself a literary apothecary. From his floating bookstore in a barge on the Seine, he prescribes novels for the hardships of life. Using his intuitive feel for the exact book a reader needs, Perdu mends broken hearts and souls. The only person he can’t seem to heal through literature is himself; he’s still haunted by heartbreak after his great love disappeared. She left him with only a letter, which he has never opened.
After Perdu is finally tempted to read the letter, he hauls anchor and departs on a mission to the south of France, hoping to make peace with his loss and discover the end of the story. Joined by a bestselling but blocked author and a lovelorn Italian chef, Perdu travels along the country’s rivers, dispensing his wisdom and his books, showing that the literary world can take the human soul on a journey to heal itself.
The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett
From the publisher: When her corgis stray into a mobile library parked near Buckingham Palace, the Queen feels duty-bound to borrow a book. Discovering the joy of reading widely (from J. R. Ackerley, Jean Genet, and Ivy Compton-Burnett to the classics) and intelligently, she finds that her view of the world changes dramatically. Abetted in her newfound obsession by Norman, a young man from the royal kitchens, the Queen comes to question the prescribed order of the world and loses patience with the routines of her role as monarch. Her new passion for reading initially alarms the palace staff and soon leads to surprising and very funny consequences for the country at large.
Non-Fiction about Appalachia
Down Cut Shin Creek: The Packhorse Librarians of Kentucky by Kathi Appelt
From Kirkus: Awarm tribute to the WPA-funded “book women” (and men) who rode Kentucky’s backwoods in the 1930s and early ’40s, delivering library service to some of this country’s most impoverished citizens. Gathering information from archives, hard-to-find published sources, and interviews, the authors write feelingly of the Pack Horse Library Program’s origins and the obstacles its dedicated employees overcame. These ranged from the chronic scarcity of books and magazines (nearly all of which were donated) to the rigors of riding, generally alone, over rugged terrain in all weathers. Those rigors are made more immediate by a reconstructed account of a rider’s day: rising at 4:30, stopping at isolated hamlets, cabins, and one-room schools to drop off materials and, sometimes, to read aloud, then plodding wearily home through darkness and drizzle. Supported by a generous array of contemporary photos and sturdy lists of sources and Web sites to give interested readers a leg up on further inquiry, this adds unique insights not just to the history of library service, but of Appalachian culture, and of women’s work in general.
Wednesday’s Children: The Memoirs of a Nurse-Turned-Social-Worker in Rural Appalachia by Kathryn Anne Michaels
From Barnes and Noble: Delivering welfare babies, warding off voodoo spells, and living in a town that still seems to be fighting the Civil War-small wonder young RN Kate Jacobs quickly grows disenchanted with nursing in the Lowcountry of coastal South Carolina. When a friend urges her to switch from nursing to paramedic medicine and child protection social work, Kate accepts the challenge and finds herself in an isolated rural area of the Appalachian Mountains. Here a new set of challenges await: technical cliff rescues and hikes into remote back-country “hollers” to remove child victims of sexual assault from their homes only to have an indifferent judge order them back the next day, and dealing with some of America’s poorest and most distrustful citizens. And from all appearances, and even though she’s white, former members of the Ku Klux Klan have just set her house on fire…Based on the memoirs of a registered nurse-turned-MSW social worker, this is a tale of heartbreak and laughter, courage and cowardice seasoned with a candid look at the early days of social work and emergency rescue medicine that will both challenge and renew your faith in humanity.
Ramp Hollow: The Ordeal of Appalachia by Steve Stoll
From the publisher: In Ramp Hollow, Steven Stoll offers a fresh, provocative account of Appalachia, and why it matters. He begins with the earliest European settlers, whose desire for vast forests to hunt in was frustrated by absentee owners—including George Washington and other founders—who laid claim to the region. Even as Daniel Boone became famous as a backwoods hunter and guide, the economy he represented was already in peril. Within just a few decades, Appalachian hunters and farmers went from pioneers to pariahs, from heroes to hillbillies, in the national imagination, and the area was locked into an enduring association with poverty and backwardness. Stoll traces these developments with empathy and precision, examining crucial episodes such as the Whiskey Rebellion, the founding of West Virginia, and the arrival of timber and coal companies that set off a devastating “scramble for Appalachia.”
At the center of Ramp Hollow is Stoll’s sensitive portrayal of Appalachian homesteads. Perched upon ridges and tucked into hollows, they combined small-scale farming and gardening with expansive foraging and hunting, along with distilling and trading, to achieve self-sufficiency and resist the dependence on cash and credit arising elsewhere in the United States. But the industrialization of the mountains shattered the ecological balance that sustained the households. Ramp Hollow recasts the story of Appalachia as a complex struggle between mountaineers and profit-seeking forces from outside the region. Drawing powerful connections between Appalachia and other agrarian societies around the world, Stoll demonstrates the vitality of a peasant way of life that mixes farming with commerce but is not dominated by a market mind-set. His original investigation, ranging widely from history to literature, art, and economics, questions our assumptions about progress and development, and exposes the devastating legacy of dispossession and its repercussions today.
What You are Getting Wrong About Appalachia by Elizabeth Catte
From the publisher: In 2016, headlines declared Appalachia ground zero for America’s “forgotten tribe” of white working-class voters. Journalists flocked to the region to extract sympathetic profiles of families devastated by poverty, abandoned by establishment politics, and eager to consume cheap campaign promises. What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia is a frank assessment of America’s recent fascination with the people and problems of the region. The book analyzes trends in contemporary writing on Appalachia, presents a brief history of Appalachia with an eye toward unpacking Appalachian stereotypes, and provides examples of writing, art, and policy created by Appalachians as opposed to for Appalachians. A much-needed insider’s perspective on a deeply misunderstood region of America.
That Book Woman by Heather Henson
From the publisher: Cal is not the readin’ type. Living way high up in the Appalachian Mountains, he’d rather help Pap plow or go out after wandering sheep than try some book learning. Nope. Cal does not want to sit stoney-still reading some chicken scratch. But that Book Woman keeps coming just the same. She comes in the rain. She comes in the snow. She comes right up the side of the mountain, and Cal knows that’s not easy riding. And all just to lend his sister some books. Why, that woman must be plain foolish—or is she braver than he ever thought?
That Book Woman is a rare and moving tale that honors a special part of American history—the Pack Horse Librarians, who helped untold numbers of children see the stories amid the chicken scratch, and thus made them into lifetime readers.
Biblioburro: A True Story from Colombia by Jeanette Winter
From Publisher’s Weekly: Winter (Nasreen’s Secret School) again roots a heartening and informative story in real life. Festive acrylic paintings transport readers to the lush Colombian jungle, where the wife of an avid reader grumbles that his extensive book collection is cluttering their house (“What are we going to do, eat books with our rice?”). To solve the problem, Luis builds crates and packs them with books that he delivers—via burro—to adults and children in remote parts of the country. During a trip to El Tormento, one of the burros refuses to leave a stream where they’ve paused (“The children are waiting for us!” Luis coaxes), and a bandit who leaps out from the shadows grudgingly accepts a book instead of silver. Upon his arrival, Luis distributes piglet masks for children to wear as he reads them a tale about three renowned little pigs. Tropical colors ignite Winter’s art, which has a pleasant folk art feel and an almost feltlike texture (the pages are rich with songbirds and smiley-faced butterflies). Winter concludes with a brief profile of the actual Luis.
My Librarian is a Camel by Margriet Ruurs:
From the publisher: Do you get books from a public library in your town or even in your school library? In many remote areas of the world, there are no library buildings. In many countries, books are delivered in unusual way: by bus, boat, elephant, donkey, train, even by wheelbarrow. Why would librarians go to the trouble of packing books on the backs of elephants or driving miles to deliver books by bus? Because, as one librarian in Azerbaijan says, “Books are as important to us as air or water!” This is the intriguing photo essay, a celebration of books, readers, and libraries. This fascinating photo essay will appeal to book lovers of all ages.
Miss Dorothy and her Bookmobile by Gloria Houston:
From Booklist: As a youngster, Dorothy Thomas knew she would become a librarian and planned to be in charge of a “fine brick library” like the one in her small Massachusetts town. However, after getting her library degree, she married and moved to rural North Carolina, where she operated a bookmobile for many years, until a library was established. As the years passed, her library-on-wheels blossomed, and Dorothy profoundly affected many lives through her love of books. Finely drawn, colorful illustrations feature a good number of landscapes, giving a strong sense of the Blue Ridge mountain setting while closely matching the story line of the brief text as Dorothy and her green van visit patrons in small towns, farms, schools, and even snowbound homes. The final page features an author’s note that establishes that Dorothy Thomas was a real person and reaffirms her influence in her rural community.
Appelt, K., & Schmitzer, J. C. (2019). Down cut Shin Creek: The pack horse librarians of Kentucky. Cynthiana Kentucky: Purple House Press.
Bennett, A. (2007). The uncommon reader. Waterville, ME: Thorndike Press.
Boyd, D. C. (2007). The Book Women of Kentucky: The WPA Pack Horse Library Project 1936-1943. Libraries and the Cultural Record, 42(2), 111+.
Catte, E. (2018). What you are getting wrong about Appalachia. Cleveland, OH: Belt Publishing.
Colgan, J. (2017). The Bookshop on the corner: A novel. United States: Thorndike Press.
Elam, C. (2002). Culture, Poverty, and Education in Appalachian Kentucky. Education and Culture, 18(1), 10-13.
Elving, R. (2020, April 04). In The 1930s, Works Program Spelled HOPE For Millions Of Jobless Americans. Retrieved January 26, 2021, from https://www.npr.org/2020/04/04/826909516/in-the-1930s-works-program-spelled-hope-for-millions-of-jobless-americans
George, N. (2016). The Little Paris Bookshop. Turtleback Books.
Glenn, S. M. (2018). Library on wheels: Mary Lemist Titcomb and America’s first bookmobile. New York: Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of ABRAMS.
Henson, H., & Small, D. (2010). That Book Woman. Toronto: CNIB.
A History of US Public Libraries. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://dp.la/exhibitions/history-us-public-libraries/libraries-on-the-move/wpa-library-programs
History.com Editors. (2009, October 29). New Deal. Retrieved January, from https://www.history.com/topics/great-depression/new-deal
Houston, G., & Lamb, S. C. (2011). Miss Dorothy and her bookmobile. New York: HarperCollins.
McGraw, E. (2017, June 21). Horse Riding Librarians Were the Great Depression’s Bookmobiles. Smithsonianmag.com. Retrieved from https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/horse-riding-librarians-were-great-depression-bookmobiles-180963786/
Michaels, K. A. (2018). Wednesday’s children: Memoirs of a nurse-turned-social-worker in the Appalachian mountains. Charleston, SC: Monkeypaw Press.
Moyes, J. (2019). The Giver of Stars. New York: Pamela Dorman Books/Viking, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Richardson, K. M. (2019). The book woman of Troublesome Creek: A novel. Naperville, IL: Sourcebooks Landmark.
Ruurs, M. (2005). My Librarian is a camel: How books are brought to children around the world. Honesdale, Pennysylvania: Boyds Mills Press.
Sawyer, K. V. (2021). The librarian of Boone’s Hollow: A novel. Waterville, ME: Thorndike Press, a part of Gale, a Cengage Compnay.
Stoll, S. (2018). Ramp Hollow: The ordeal of Appalachia. New York: Hill and Wang, a division of Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
Stone, L. (2017, January 13). Where Is Appalachia? Retrieved January 26, 2021, from https://medium.com/migration-issues/where-is-appalachia-2d240d74161b
Winter, J. (2013). Biblioburro: A true story from Colombia. Johnson City, TN: National Geographic School Publishing.