Award-winning writer for visiting Lincolnton | Culture & Leisure



The Lincoln County Historical Association is home to award-winning Southern writer Sharyn McCrumb, best known for her Appalachian “Ballad” novels, set in the mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee. McCrumb will be at the Lincoln Cultural Center on November 12. His titles include the New York Times bestsellers, “She Walks These Hills” and “The Rosewood Casket,” which deal with the issue of endangered wilderness; “The Ballad of Frankie Silver” and “The Ballad of Tom Dooley”, exploring the true stories behind two murderous Appalachian ballads; and ‘The Songcatcher’, a musical genealogy, tracing the author’s family from 18th century Scotland to the present day by following a Scottish ballad through the generations. “Ghost Riders,” a tale of the Civil War in the mountains of western North Carolina, won the Wilma Dykeman Prize for Literature from the East Tennessee Historical Society and the National Audie Award for Best Recorded Novel. His books have been named New York Times and Los Angeles Times Notable Books.

“The Unquiet Grave”, the story of Greenbrier Ghost from West Virginia, was selected by the Georgia Library System as a 2017 selection for North Georgia Reads; reading all the lectures for the West Virginia State Library conference; the West Virginia Featured Book at the West Virginia Book Festival; and a star alternate from the Literary Guild.

Burnsville’s Parkway Playhouse staged theatrical versions of “Ghost Riders” and “The Ballad of Frankie Silver” in 2014 and 2016. In fall 2021, “Requiem for Frankie Silver”, an oratorio composed by Craig Carnahan and Craig Fields, based on the Requiem Mass and “The Ballad of Frankie Silver,” will premiere in Minneapolis.

“My books are like Appalachian quilts,” McCrumb said. “I take vividly colored fragments of legends, ballads, fragments of rural life and local tragedies, and piece them together into an intricate whole that not only tells a story, but also a deeper truth about the culture of the south of the mountains.”

Sharyn McCrumb received the Mary Frances Hobson Award for Southern Literature from Chowan University in North Carolina in 2014. DC in 2006. In April 2017, the national DAR named her a “Woman in the Arts” for her achievements literary. In November 2017, the West Virginia Library Association presented Sharyn McCrumb with its Merit Award for her contributions to Appalachian literature.

King’s Mountain (2013, St. Martin’s Press), the story of the 1780 Revolutionary War battle and men of Overmountain, received a DAR Award from the Edward Buncombe (NC) Chapter and, in June 2015, the Patricia Winn Award for Southern Fiction from the Montgomery County Arts and Heritage Council of Clarksville TN. King’s Mountain is taught in schools and displayed in historical museums in four states.

McCrumb’s other honors include: AWA Outstanding Contribution to Appalachian Literature Award; the Chaffin Prize for Southern Literature; the Plattner Prize for short story; and AWA’s Best Appalachian Novel. She was named “Best Mountain Writer” by Blue Ridge Country Magazine. A graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, with a master’s degree in English from Virginia Tech, McCrumb was the first writer-in-residence at King’s College of Tennessee. In 2005, she was honored as Writer of the Year at Emory & Henry College.

His novels, studied at universities around the world, have been translated into eleven languages, including French, German, Dutch, Japanese, Arabic and Italian. She has lectured about her work at universities and museums across the United States, as well as at the University of Oxford, the University of Bonn in Germany, and the Smithsonian Institution. Ms. McCrumb taught a writing workshop in Paris and was a writer-in-residence at King’s College in Tennessee and the Chautauqua Institute in western New York.

“St. Dale,” The Canterbury Tales in a NASCAR, in which ordinary people on a pilgrimage to honor racing legend Dale Earnhardt find a miracle, won a 2006 Library of Virginia award as well as the AWA award of the book of the year.

A graduate of UNC Chapel Hill, with a master’s degree from Virginia Tech, she lives and writes in the Virginia Blue Ridge. McCrumb’s work is the subject of the book, “From A Race of Storytellers: The Ballad Novels of Sharyn McCrumb.”

McCrumb will be at the Lincoln Cultural Center on Saturday, November 12 at 1 p.m. Tickets are available through Eventbrite for $15 or at the door. A reception and signing session will take place following McCrumb’s speech. The Cultural Center is located at 403 East Main Street in Lincolnton. For more information, email [email protected] or call 828-777-8707.

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