Stan Woodward | Filmmakers on Folkstreams

Stan Woodward

Since 1975, Stan Woodward has produced Southern culture and folklife documentaries that reflect the weave of the fabric of Southern folk culture. His films thread through many folk heritage traditions deeply rooted in the agrarian South and threatened by massive shifts and changes in today\'s society. They were shot during a time when we were starting to see the passing away of the "keepers" - Southern tradition-bearers who worked to honor and keep alive the folk heritage traditions passed on to them by their ancestors. Traditions like the open-air Brunswick stew and hash-making communal stews cooked in big black iron pots and stirred with wooden paddles by stew crews under a designated stew-master. Or the Burgoo and Rockfish Muddle and Sheep Stew traditions that are endangered communal cooking traditions in the "New South". Stan\'s works thread through 200 year old primitive camp ground religious traditions that have continually been held each year in the backwoods of Low Country South Carolina, attended by Southern blacks and whites, and events like the National Turtle Day of Sutherland (VA) and its annual stew cooked in "the little cabin in the woods" by Jimmy Olgers. They thread through small but iconic five and dime stores and grocery stores where old timers gather to tell stories that keep alive the ways of deeply rooted Southern culture and folkways. They connect the threads that link a festival such as the Ol\' Timey Horse Farmer Gathering, hash cookings and barbecues and Southern stew traditions that heretofore were never seen as being tied to the same lineage and common heritage of the agrarian South.

Now retired and editing works from his extensive archive of Southern culture documentaries, Stan is a frequent lecturer with clips of his films in presentations and talks at Universities, Museums and local arts councils.

Stan Woodward Lifeworks Collection of Southern Culture and Folklife Documentaries