Mica, also known as “isinglass”, is a mineral mined primarily in Western North Carolina for its unequaled heat resistant qualities. Men mostly prospected for and mined the mica while women processed it in mica houses. .
Europeans introduced the important craft of iron making to Appalachia in the 16th century. Iron ore was discovered all over the region. Large deposits were found in Pennsylvania. Smaller ones were scattered in places like Cherokee. . .
From the 1880s until World War II, Appalachian crafts were rejuvenated by a cultural revival. It was led by missionaries and social workers who wanted both to preserve Appalachian culture, but also to improve the wellbeing of mountain people. . .
Appalachian farm wives contributed to their family’s income through the butter and egg money they earned by taking their extra eggs and butter to the general store. . .