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In an era when corn was plentiful and dollars were not, Rabun County men, like their neighbors in all of Georgia and much of Appalachia, turned to the production and selling of moonshine to put food on the table for their families.

Largest Moonshine Still Seized ~ During 1920s' Prohibition, moonshine, also known as "hooch" and "white lightning," was illegally produced, especially in the southern states and Appalachia. Moonshine, home produced alcohol or whiskey, used a still for distillation. Producers and smugglers usually worked by "moonshine" to avoid detection. Initially, the Internal Revenue Service enforced 1920s' Prohibition, and agents who destroyed stills were known as "revenuers."

“In addition to isolation and darkness, the [coal] miner sometimes works in mud and water, sometimes stripped to the waist because of the heat, sometimes in suffocating gas and smoke.” Those words from a 1922 U.S. Department of Labor report told only part of the story. Coal miners also faced lung disease, explosions, and cave-ins that trapped miners underground, where they often died.

Beaufort, South Carolina. Several generations of a slave family, all born on the plantation of J.J. Smith. Taken in 1862 by Timothy O'Sullivan.

Ralph E. Madsen, the Tall Cowboy. at Capitol in Washington, D.C., Shaking Hands With Senator Morris Sheppard of Texas in 1919. Known simply as "Tex", Ralph E. Madsen, born in 1897, grew to be 7'6" and was considered the tallest man in the United States at that time. He spent most of his life on a ranch in Texas, acquired veterinary skills and was an authority on horses, sheep, cows and pigs. He eventually traveled to every state, Mexico and Canada, always accompanied by his minature horses.

A scrawny, long-bearded mountain man with a foul mouth & a passing acquaintance with copper tubing & kettles, Marvin “Popcorn” Sutton seemed the embodiment of moonshiners of yore Brought up in rural Cocke County, Tenn, identified as one of four “moonshine capitals of the world” in the corn-whiskey history “Mountain Spirits,” Mr. Sutton learned the family trade from his father. Going back to the Scots-Irish, who brought it to the New World.

Robert Todd Lincoln, the only child of Abraham Lincoln to live to adulthood. This was taken in 1922 at the dedication of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC. Robert was at Abraham Lincoln's bedside at his death. Robert Lincoln was also at the Sixth Street Train Station in Washington, D.C. on July 2, 1881, and witnessed the assassination of President James Garfield. At the time Lincoln was serving as Garfield's Secretary of War.

‘Moonshine Still’, from Earl Palmer’s superb Appalachian Photograph Collection, 20thC, via Virginia Tech; found at Home Distiller …