Thirteenth Annual Hagood Mill Storytelling Festival

Pickens County invites you to a special, and free, day of milling, stories, tall tales and lots of memories at the Hagood Mill Historic Site & Folklife Center. The Mill will be operating, rain or shine, on Saturday, October 18th from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

As part of Hagood Mill’s “Music in the Mountains” series, the celebration of tradition will continue on this day at the “Thirteenth Annual Hagood Mill Storytelling Festival.” The hills around the old mill will echo with the whispers, howls ‘n hollers of some of the Southeast’s best storytellers sharing bits about all sorts of folks, funnies, cultures and places.

Returning again to host is Hagood Mill’s storyteller-in-residence, author, musician and 2013 State Heritage Award recipient, Johnny Fowler. From the rolling hills of upstate South Carolina with family ties to the western North Carolina Mountains, John’s storytelling is a blast of old-time energy of yesteryear introducing traditional yarns and folktales from the Carolina region. Those Appalachian family ties run deep in John, which in turn creates his friendly and energetic personality. He also is an old-time mountain banjo and harmonica master, and plays several other traditional instruments, occasionally blending them into his programs. John’s stories and old-time songs geared for audiences young and old, are stepping stones of history and southern culture. John will be performing at the Exchange Place at the National Storytelling Festival. Most recently John authored the biography of George Mullins, an African American folk hero and street performer from Upcountry South Carolina known as “Trotting Sally”. The reviews have been outstanding!  John is also a researcher, collector, preservationist and writer as well as the host of an old time radio show on NC public radio station WNCW 88.7 FM.

Cora Newcomb lives in the charming seaside village of Beaufort, South Carolina. Her life reads like a modern-day-action novel; her stories reflect chapters from her life along with inspirational stories, historical tales and ghost tales that make the imagination burn.

Cora began spinning tales to her daughter and then throughout the Low country - weaving magic with hypnotizing yarns. She tells stories to entertain, to educate, and pass on cultural heritage but most of all because she loves the joy of telling tales.             

Author/Storyteller/Playwright Linda Goodman, an Appalachian Mountain native of Melungeon descent, performs her stories nationwide. She has been published in the Chicken Soup and Stories for the Heart Series.  Her one-woman show and book, Daughters of the Appalachians has also been performed by theater companies in California, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Virginia. Her writing workshops teach story creation and the interviewing process.

Both of Linda’s CDs, Bobby Pins and Jessie and Other Stories, have won multiple Storytelling World Winner Awards.

 Old School Duo - Leon and Marshall James started singing at an early age with their older brother Albert and father A.B. James. Leon was only five and Marshall was seven. They learned harmony through DO-RE-ME singing, a kind of shape note singing. They joined other family members singing at church gatherings and social events. In high school they sang with the Agriculture Quartet which won them a number of trophies, ribbons and prizes. They also performed with the Holy Tone Quartet. The brothers are from Lyman, South Carolina. Their music represents an old-school style of singing that dates back to antebellum days featuring rich harmonies of call-and-response, shouts and praise all sung in an old time acapella style. Since 2002 Leon and Marshall have been calling themselves the “Old School Duo”. They have been featured at churches, festivals, and gatherings throughout the region, also including on the Carnival Glory Ship in South America (Belize).   

Come and enjoy!   

There will be lots to see on October 18th as Hagood Mill hosts a variety of folk life and traditional arts demonstrations.  There will be blacksmithing, bowl-digging, flint knapping, chair-caning, moonshining, broom-making, basket-making, pottery, quilting, spinning, knitting, weaving, woodcarving, metal-smithing, leather-working and more! You can ask questions of the artists and make a purchase of their Traditional Arts to take home.

The Centerpiece of the Hagood Mill historic site is the water-powered 1845 gristmill. It is one of the finest examples of nineteenth century technology in the Upcountry and operates just as it has for the last century-and-a-half…the mill will be running throughout the day. In the old mill, fresh stone-ground corn meal, grits and wheat flour will be available.  In addition rye flour, Basmati rice flour, oat flour, oatmeal, popping corn meal, and grits, organic yellow corn meal and grits, and buckwheat flour are produced and may be available.  Hagood Mill cookbooks and a variety of other mill related items are also available.

There promises to be lots to do and lots of fun! So, head on out, grab a plate of great food on site from the Gatehouse Restaurant and enjoy a special day at the Hagood Mill.

The Hagood Mill historic site is open Wednesday through Saturday from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm all year long. The Mill operates, rain or shine, for a special festival the third Saturday of every month. 

The Hagood Mill is located just 3 miles north of Pickens off Highway 178 or 5 ½ miles south of Cherokee Foothills Scenic Hwy 11off Highway 178 at 138 Hagood Mill Road.

  “Music in the Mountains 2014” is sponsored by a private benefactor. For additional information, please contact the Hagood Mill at (864) 898-2936 or check out our website at www.visitpickenscounty.com/calendar.

“…a man is always a teller of tales, he lives surrounded by his stories and the stories of others, he sees everything that happens to him through them; and he tries to live his life as if he were telling a story.” ...Jean-Paul Sartre


138 Hagood Mill Rd.
Pickens, SC 29671
(864) 898-2936
Free - public welcome!