Friday, February 19, 2010

A Note on the Melungeons

By Swan M. Burnett, M. D., Washington
Read at a meeting of the American Society of Anthropologists
February 5, 1889

Legends of the Melungeons I first heard at my father’s knee as a child in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee, and the name had such a ponderous and inhuman sound as to associate them in my mind with the giants and ogres of the wonder tales I listened to in the winter evenings before the crackling logs in the wide-mouth fireplace. And when I chanced to waken in the night and the fire had died down on the hearth, and the wind swept with a demoniac shriek and terrifying roar around and through the house, rattling the windows and the loose clapboards on the roof, I shrank under the bedclothes trembling with a fear that was almost an expectation that one of these huge creatures would come down the chimney with a rush, seize me with his dragon-like arms, and carry me off to his cave in the mountains, there to devour me piecemeal.

To read more: Click Here.

Note: This MHS Blog entry, the first mention of Melungeons in an academic context, is a reblogging of an entry originally November 14, 2008.

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