The WPA Guide to Tennessee
ebook ∣ The Volunteer State
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During the 1930s in the United States, the Works Progress Administration developed the Federal Writers' Project to support writers and artists while making a national effort to document the country's shared history and culture. The American Guide series consists of individual guides to each of the states. Little-known authors—many of whom would later become celebrated literary figures—were commissioned to write these important books. John Steinbeck, Saul Bellow, Zora Neale Hurston, and Ralph Ellison are among the more than 6,000 writers, editors, historians, and researchers who documented this celebration of local histories. Photographs, drawings, driving tours, detailed descriptions of towns, and rich cultural details exhibit each state's unique flavor.
Although it is a slim volume, the WPA Guide to Tennessee is packed with useful and interesting information. There are sections on folklore and the state's architectural and literary legacies as well as an essay on the Tennessee Valley Authority. There are 16 driving tours in total, through both the Volunteer State's several major cities and the natural wonder of the Great Smokey Mountains Natural Park.