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Karen Stuebing | profile | all galleries >> The Invisible Appalachia tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

The Invisible Appalachia




In the middle of the breathtaking scenic views, rivers, waterfalls, green hills, and quaint historic towns, lies a part of Appalachia overlooked and unseen. The hidden places where people live in conditions that rival any urban slum with little or no income and no government programs to bail them out


Miss Melinda lives here. Her husband died many years back. They lived in the original house but she has since moved into the camper. There is no indoor plumbing; water comes from a spring. One electric line powers a TV and hot plate. The bus was also a living quarters for some since departed family.

Out of respect for her, understanding that her pride would rebel against any form of pity or dismay, I did not photograph her. She is perfectly content with her lot in life. She has her TV for entertainment, lots of work to keep her busy and many dogs, cats and a rooster to keep her company. When you visit, she'll show you her photo albums with pictures of her husband and her in younger years when she was pretty and slim. She laughs more than most people I know and hugs you often. She's tough, resiliant and completely at peace with what life has given and taught her. I have found these qualities in many people who have little but are willing to share what they do.

There is a lesson here that possessions, careers and carefully landscaped properties do not bring happiness. It is something that comes from within.




Going up the Lane
Going up the Lane
The Original House
The Original House
The New Home
The New Home
From the Rear
From the Rear
Nobody has to be Homeless..
Nobody has to be Homeless..
One of the Dogs
One of the Dogs
Wash Day
Wash Day
Clothes on the Line
Clothes on the Line