In the Great Smoky Mountains, moonshine making was a world unto itself. On the one hand, moonshining was about dynamite-toting lookouts, fast cars, snitching, quick cash, hidden stills, and deadly gunplay. On the other, it was a story of earnest farm families living in remote mountain valleys and practicing their traditional craft of moonshining so they could buy shoes for their children. Yet perhaps the most fascinating aspect of this book is the sudden resurgence of making moonshine in the Southern mountains today. Join author and noted historian Dr. Daniel S.Pierce to learn about the traditions, foibles and dangers of mountain moonshining from the early 19th century to tomorrow.
The reviews for this book are terrific, with Sharyn McCrumb (The Ballad of Tom Dooley) saying it is “a tale well told. …thorough, entertaining, and written in lyrical prose” and Ron Rash praising how Pierce “renders moonshiners not as cartoon figures but fully realized human beings.”
In an interview soon after the book was published, Dr Pierce was asked by interviewer Mark Lynn Ferguson what side of moonshining is never portrayed in popular culture. His answered by saying there are three things folks miss: 1) The intelligence and creativity of many moonshiners. 2) The evolution of moonshining from a craft in the antebellum period to an industrial enterprise in the Prohibition era and back to a craft in the present day. 3) The entrepreneurial nature of many moonshiners. So consider this book not only a historical insight, but also a study in small business and survival.