PICKENS — The mighty mill wheel will be turning and the hills resounding in songs of praise at Hagood Mill Historic Site on Saturday, Aug. 18, as we host our annual old-time gospel sing-along. Bring your lawn chair or blanket and lend your voice to all the old gospel favorites with our heritage singers.
For 200 years, Appalachian gospel music has been a staple throughout the Upcountry of South Carolina. It is this rich tradition we honor on Aug. 18.
This year’s performers include the Legendary James Brothers, Carol Rifkin and Jeanette Queen, Mountain Bridge, Derrick Phillips and the Heartstrings.
The Legendary James Brothers gospel music represents an old-school style of singing that features rich harmonies, call-and-response, and shouts and praise in the “a capella” style.
Carol Rifkin and Jeanette Queen have played and vocalized together for many years. With a love for the lyrics, they revel in the oft’ forgotten words to the Old-Time fiddle tunes they play.
Mountain Bridge is a Gospel Bluegrass band steeped in traditional music. These musicians truly love what they play, and it clearly shows. Chad Simpson and Josh Johnson lead Mountain Bridge, with Chad singing lead vocals and playing rhythm guitar and Josh Johnson on tenor vocals and fiddle. Their band is completed by one of the tightest bluegrass rhythm sections around.
Rounding out the entertainment will be a rousing performance from Heartstrings led by Lib Porter, singing old time piano and autoharp gospel songs from the primitive White Mountain church tradition, and Derrick Phillips, one of the Upcountry’s most dynamic folk singers.
This is going to be an unforgettable show, so don’t miss being there.
The gristmill and other living history demonstrations will be running from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and as always, we encourage visitors to bring their favorite old-time instruments and join in the open jam, which takes place throughout the day under the ancient cedar beside our beloved 1791 log house.
There is a $5 parking fee for the day, but admission is free to the Hagood Mill Site as well as the Hagood Creek Petroglyph Site. All proceeds from parking help offset the costs at Hagood Mill.
So pack up the car, head on out, and don’t forget to bring a lawn chair or blanket.
There will be lots of other things to see and do on Aug. 19 as Hagood Mill hosts a variety of folk-life and traditional-arts demonstrations. There will be demonstrations of blacksmithing, bowl-digging, flint knapping, chair-caning, moonshining, broom-making, basket making, pottery, quilting, spinning, knitting, weaving, wood-carving, metalsmithing, leather-working, beekeeping and much more!
Talk with the artists and make purchases of their Traditional Arts to take home.
The centerpiece of the Hagood Mill Historic Site is the water-powered 1845 gristmill. It is one of the finest examples of nineteenth century technology in the Upcountry and operates just as it has for the last century and a half. In the old mill, fresh stone-ground cornmeal, grits, and wheat flour will be available.
In addition, rye flour, Basmati rice flour, oat flour, oatmeal, popping-corn meal and grits, organic yellow cornmeal and grits, and buckwheat flour are usually ground and may be in stock. Hagood Mill cookbooks and a variety of other mill related items are also available.
It’s going to be a grand summer day!
Bring a picnic, or grab a plate of great food from one of our local food trucks and make lasting memories on our ancestral grounds.
The Hagood Mill Historic Site is open Wednesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. all year long, and it operates, rain or shine, for a special folklife festival the third Saturday of every month.
The Hagood Mill is located just three miles north of Pickens off Highway 178 or 5½ miles south of Cherokee Foothills Scenic Hwy 11, just off Highway 178 at 138 Hagood Mill Road.
Reach Billy Crawford at 864-350-5985.