Skip to content

Not long ago; or, Little by little (4): Dolly Parton on the scar on her toes (rural poverty in 1950s Tennessee)

[For those who came in late… Start with Not long ago, or Little by little (1)]

Not long ago, in a place not far away and directly connected to you, something like this was happening…

Somewhere in the Appalachian Mountains c1950…

Jad Abumrad: She told me one story about how one day, when she was about seven or eight, she jumped over the fence, landed on a broken Mason jar, and almost lost her toes.

Dolly Parton: I remember them picking me up, my dad and my brothers holding me down, mama pouring kerosene on my toes. Mama got her sewing needle… they held me down and mama sewed ’em back together enough to where they held. They held, and they’re fine, but I have a scar – I can see the little scar that goes across all three toes.

From Dolly Parton’s America, Episode 3 – Tennessee Mountain Trance

She – we – came a long way in a short time.

I'd love to hear your thoughts and recommended resources...