Ganell's Cornshuck Creativity

Cornshuck and Appleheaded Dolls

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History of Doll Making


dyed cornshucks

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Sometime in the late 1930's or early in the 1940's, the Episcopal Church had what today would be called an outreach program in the small mountainous communities of Southwestern Virginia. The programs were administered by the Episcopalian helpers, known as the Deaconesses. Sandy Ridge had one such program, located in the little community on top of Banner Mountain and Tom's Creek Mountain. The towns of Coeburn, St. Paul, Dante and Grundy were nearby.

During this time, most families were self-sustained with the community general store used for such things as coffee, sugar, and salt. All the families of the nineteenth and twentieth century were adept at making articles for their homes. Quilting, spinning, weaving, stitchery, making utensils such as buckets, knives, etc. and folk art such as the cornshuck dolls were just a part of daily labors in and around the home. Then in the middle to late twentieth century, the public's appreciation for these talents as an art form began to be recognized.













© Ganell's Cornshuck Creativity 2004