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“Faces” in the Piney Woods: Techniques

Techniques:  Working in the Woods

Gillis Carter of Willacoochee works four trees in his front yard as a reminder that turpentine once played such a central role in his family and in the region:

 

I reckon, next to my love for the Lord Jesus, I just love turpentining.  Not that I know anymore than anybody else about it, but I was raised up in it, and it was my dad’s livelihood all of his life.  And I just grown a fondness for it, and I just wanted to cut those trees out there and chip ‘em for people that passes this highway out here, that they might stop and show it to their kids… It’s something that I would like to see kept alive 50 years down the road…  Because the time has done passed since 1978 [the year Carter and his family ceased to work in the woods as their primary source of income].  We’ve got a generation of children that’s 22 or 24 year old that’s never seen a face.         

 

Carter is a self-proclaimed “advocate of the turpentine industry,” and part of his current pride in turpentine stems from the fact that he knows how to do nearly everything involved in turpentine labor.  Here he demonstrates the processes involved in turpentining:

 

Meet Gillis Carter

Pushing Down

Tacking Tin

Streaking

Chipping and Pulling

Dipping

Barreling

Blue Whistler

Old “Boxed” Stumps
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Last modified: 03/17/05

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