Foxfire 8 Short Essay - Answer Key

Eliot Wigginton
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1. Explain the history of Foxfire.

The history of "Foxfire" began in 1966 when Eliot Wigginton, a high school teacher in Rabun Gap, Georgia, developed a magazine with his students. They named the magazine "Foxfire" after a plant that grows in the Appalachian mountains and the publication focused on Appalachia and its history and culture. The students conducted oral interviews with elderly mountaineers and then wrote articles about the interviewees and their lives, including how-to instructions for mountain handicrafts or mountain recipes. Wigginton wanted his students to learn about their Appalachian heritage and to understand mountain handicrafts, folk medicine, and culture. In 1972, articles from "Foxfire" were published in book form. Today, there are more than eight books in the "Foxfire" series and the magazine is still being published.

2. What role do Rabun Gap High School students play in "Foxfire" projects?

Students from Rabun Gap High School play a major role in the "Foxfire" projects. They are actively involved in the planning process for the "Foxfire" headquarters and restoration of a historic log cabin. They are also involved in producing manuscripts for Foxfire Press, publishing the magazine, and restoring a historic building, as well as the photographic documentation of the process and gathering and recording the history of the structure for the magazine. In addition, students take part in an affiliated blacksmith program and the products made in the program are marketed to magazine subscribers.

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