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A National Preserve of Documentary Films about American Roots Cultures
streamed with essays about the traditions and filmmaking. The site includes transcriptions, study and teaching guides, suggested readings, and links to related websites.  

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Selected Films

The films of Stan Woodward

South Carolina filmmaker Stan Woodward has a long career as a teacher, arts administrator, and encourager of young filmmakers. His first film “Its Grits” was made with cumbersome and expensive 16mm film. Later, liberated by the video camcorder, he became a prolific filmmaker, focusing his work mostly on southern food ways, the people who maintain them, a...

The films of Stan Woodward

South Carolina filmmaker Stan Woodward has a long career as a teacher, arts administrator, and encourager of young filmmakers. His first film “Its Grits” was made with cumbersome and expensive 16mm film. Later, liberated by the video camcorder, he became a prolific filmmaker, focusing his work mostly on southern food ways, the people who maintain them, and the rural communities they nourish. This collection on Folkstreams was supported by a grant from the South Carolina Humanities Council.

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Barbecue & Home Cooking: Foods that Make you Smile

The filmmaker is joined by SC folklorist, Saddler Taylor in this “road film” that travels a spontaneous investigating-and-recording-as-you-go journey through the farm roads and by-ways of four rural counties. There, homecooking and barbecue can be found, cooked by folk heritage culinary food artisans using ancestral recipes and methods that have been passed on to them by mothers cooking over wood-stoves and fathers cooking in BBQ pits dug in the ground.

Foodways, Rural Life / South / 2004
56 minutes | Read More

Brunswick Stew: The Pride of Brunswick County Virginia

This film travels the viewer pot-side where we see the work of artisans of many different stewmasters and learn how these stews are sold and the money used to meet needs in the small town and farm communities. The original feature length version - BRUNSWICK STEW : A Southern Americana Folk Heritage Tradition - was produced for the people of Brunswick County, Virginia, who honor this tradition and maintain it through a system of stewmasters and stew crews who cook for their constituent community.

Foodways, Rural Life / South / 1999
56 minutes | Read More

Brunswick Stew: Georgia Named Her, Georgia Claims Her

The Governor, two Georgia State Senators, a “man-on-the-street” in Atlanta, and folklorist John Burrison speak in one voice, pronouncing Brunswick stew as a most beloved folk heritage stew of Georgia. The film explores this Georgia tradition and the “stew wars” between Brunswick County, Va., and Brunswick, Georgia.

Foodways, Rural Life / South / 2005
56 minutes | Read More

Burgoo: Legendary Stew of the South

From pioneer days in Kentucky came a stew prepared by farmers and hunters. They called it Burgoo. No one knows where the name came from, but one thing is very clear, the passion for whatever is called Burgoo, cooked in huge black iron cauldrons, is reflected in the titles given to the burgoo masters—they are called “Burgoo Kings!"

Foodways, Rural Life / South / 2008
56 minutes | Read More

Carolina Hash

CAROLINA HASH starts with establishing as fact the myth that hash-popularity ends at the South Carolina borders. We learn that right across the state line in North Carolina, barbecue customers and restauranteurs "....don’t even know what hash is." The Brunswick stew states of North Carolina and Georgia which border South Carolina for the most part don’t know about it. But the tradition runs deep in all of South Carolina, and most native South Carolinians not only know about it - they can tell you where to go "....to get the best hash in South Carolina!" and the name of the hash-master.

Foodways, Regional, African American Culture / South / 2008
56 minutes | Read More | Preview

Cattle Creek Camp Part 1

For many families at Cattle Creek Campground, the annual camp meeting signifies a time of fellowship when families can spend a week away from the hectic pace of modern life.

Customs, Religion, Family, Festivals/Customs / South / 2007
18 minutes | Read More

Chicken Bog of the Pee Dee Region

Chicken bog is a delicious chicken, rice and sausage dish, and it’s very much a South Carolina thing. Folks in surrounding states are likely to give you a blank stare if you mention it.

Customs, Foodways, Regional / South / 2014
02 minutes | Read More

Cooperative Grocery

This is a remarkable "inside" glimpse into Southern folk culture and the roots of Southern "raconteurship" at it’s most authentic and best.

Customs, Foodways, Regional / South / 2008
17 minutes | Read More

Cypress Camp Meeting

Cypress Methodist Camp Ground is one of only a few campgrounds in South Carolina which continues to host annual week-long camp meetings—a vestige of the Great Awakening in American religious life in the nineteenth century.

Customs, Regional, Rural Life / South / 2007
43 minutes | Read More

Drake's Barbecue

Drake's is a a barbecue shack back off the road...as they pull in and Stan begins to shoot, the owner appears and begins waving and calling him to come eat "the best barbecue and brunswick stew in Georgia."

Foodways, Women, Regional / South / 2014
09 minutes | Read More

Indian Field Camp Meeting

Documentary producer and filmmaker Stan Woodward has devoted approximately seven years and filmed over 170 hours on five Lowcountry campgrounds

Customs, Religion, Festivals/Customs / South / 2007
58 minutes | Read More

It's Grits

With all the native wit, rib tickling humor and ability to see what makes the South the South found in the literary classics of Southern writers like Mark Twain, documentary filmmaker Stan Woodward helps us discover the common thread that connects the South’s people across all social, economic, political and racial boundaries – Grits! “Grits is us” - or, if we are to be grammatically correct, “Grits are us” - could easily be the title of this uproariously funny and at the same time insightful and poignant personal documentary.

Foodways / South / 1980
44 minutes | Read More | Preview

The Morris Chronicle

Morris Peeples is a film that sets out to document a 93 year-old barbecue master as he cooks a hog in the old fashioned way - the way that farmers in the Springfield community in South Carolina have cooked in this Edisto River region in Barnwell County.

Foodways, Family, Rural Life, Aging, African American Culture / South / 2006
01 hour, 51 minutes | Read More

Nothing to Prove

Southpaw bassist and South Carolina native Mac Arnold was only ten years old when he and his brother built a guitar out of a gas can, a couple strips of wood, a handful of nails, and some screen wire. Things just got better from there.

Music, Rural Life, African American Culture / South / 2009
01 hour, 27 minutes | Read More

People Who Take Up Serpents

Members of a branch of the Holiness churches who base their religious beliefs and practices on Bible verses, especially Mark 16:18. The members handle serpents, hold fire to their bodies, speak in tongues, lay hands on the sick and cast out devils.

Healing & Medicine, Religion / Appalachia / 1974
36 minutes | Read More | Preview

Puddin Pot
The Puddin’ Pot is the folk heritage traditional foodway served on the first Monday at the Indian Field Camp Meeting each September. Made in a large iron kettle, different parts of the pig’s head are added into the puddin’ pot along with other ingredients, including onions and seasoning.
Foodways, Rural Life / South / 2014
08 minutes | Read More

The Sheep Stew Of Dundas: A Gastronomical Delight

This journey in search of the story of Dundas Sheep Stew and its preparation is poignant as we learn how fragile the tradition is; and it is filled at every turn with good humor and the extraordinary warmth of the people of Dundas. This documentary provides an unusual view back into the ways of our rural farm folk who took occasional breaks from the gruelling work of farming to come together around the cooking of a locally concocted stew, to enjoy fun and fellowship; and for the stewmaster and stew crews, a sip of whiskey here and there, some good-natured leg-pulling, and the comradery of a rural farm culture that occured around the stew-pot - not to mention the good eatin' that followed.

Foodways, Festivals/Customs, Rural Life / South / 2001
56 minutes | Read More

South Carolina Chicken Bog: The Chicken Bog King of the Pee Dee

What is Chicken bog? Folks in surrounding states are likely to give you a blank stare if you mention it. Chicken bog is a delicious chicken, rice and sausage dish, and it’s very much a South Carolina thing.

Customs, Foodways, Regional / South / 2014
30 minutes | Read More

Southern Stews: A Taste of the South

This spontaneously-shot surprising documentary looks across the South to see the connections between the folk heritage traditions of communal cooking in gigantic black iron pots stirred with wooden paddles maintained into the 21st century by culinary folk artisans called “stewmasters” with their stew crews.

Foodways, Festivals/Customs, Rural Life / South / 2002
56 minutes | Read More

St. Paul Camp Ground

Twenty years after slavery, four leaders of the St. Paul community bought the land for the campground. Held the second week of October, the camp has many traditions, including campers who convene the meeting by marching the grounds singing, "It's Camp Meeting Time on the Hill." The 70 tents are arranged in a circle beneath tall pine trees on 113 acres of land near Harleyville on St. Paul Road. Courthouse records show that the land was purchased for $210.

Customs, Religion, Rural Life, African American Culture / South / 2007
52 minutes | Read More

Stewbilee

Every year in Brunswick, Georgia the town holds a folk heritage festival celebrating the roots of Brunswick stew - roots that they claim which are also claimed by Brunswick County, Virginia.

Customs, Foodways, Regional / South / 2005
30 minutes | Read More

Turtle Stew

Meet Jimmy Oglers, owner of Oglers store and creator of his award winning turtle stew. Jimmy brings us along as he celebrates National Turtle Day in Sutherland and prepares for the traditional communal cooking of the prize winning turtle stew at his cabin in the woods.

Customs, Regional, Rural Life / South / 2014
56 minutes | Read More

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