The Mountain Laurel
The Journal of Mountain Life

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from the
Heart of the Blue Ridge

Growing Up On Tuggles Creek - The Hollow Hickory

By YKW © 1986

Issue: February, 1986

(Editor's Note: Tuggles Creek is located in the Heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, near the tiny mountain community of Meadows of Dan, Virginia. Meadows of Dan is a crossroads community where US Highway 58 Business and the Blue Ridge Parkway cross. Mabry Mill is north about 1.6 miles and Mayberry Trading Post is about 2.8 miles south on the Blue Ridge Parkway.)

Many of the early preachers in the pioneer days had received little education and of course had no books to draw from to drive home the point in their sermons.

One such young preacher (my dad used to quote) had a real homemade story to illustrate his point. To quote (in his fashion):

"One day I needed a maul to rive some boards for my barn. AH, so I took up my ax and went out in the woods to look for the right size. AH, well pretty soon I came upon a small hickory tree just about the right size. AH, it was tall and straight and looked to be just what I wanted. AH, so I took my ax and started to chop it down low, but when I struck into it I found that LO! It was hollow at the butt. AH, now brothers and sisters that is how some people are. AH, they dress up in their fine clothes and hats and put on airs and make out like they are the finest people in the world. AH, but when you really get to know them, AH, they turn out to be like that hickory tree. AH, all hollow at the butt. AH!