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Taste of the Backcountry – May 7th, 2011

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Contact: Zac Cunningham, Director
Walnut Grove Plantation & Historic Price House
Spartanburg County Historical Association
864-576-6546 (o), 864-576-5048 (f)

Taste of the Backcountry to Explore Food, Drink, and Daily Life of 19th-Century South Carolinians

Woodruff, SC, April 26 — In the early 1800s, at the inn and tavern located at the Price House in southern Spartanburg County, Thomas Price served food and drink to travelers passing through the Backcountry along the expanding road network of the young United States. On Saturday, May 7, come experience a taste of the Backcountry and discover the food, drink, and hospitality of Thomas Price’s South Carolina!

Taste of the Backcountry, an annual festival presented at the Historic Price House by the Spartanburg County Historical Association, explores the food and drink, the methods of preparation, and the daily life of Thomas and Ann Price, their slaves, and the Backcountry’s other free and enslaved residents. At this event, see hearth cooking demonstrations and learn how the Prices and area residents prepared meals. Taste the foods–beef soup, forced eggs, fried cabbage, and apple pie–the Prices ate themselves as well as served to travelers. Help churn cream into butter. Take part in nature activities and trail hikes that examine how residents relied on the natural world for food through hunting, foraging, or farming.

In addition to food from the 1800s, for a portion of the day, visitors can learn about corn whiskey and other homemade spirits common to the era and served at Thomas Price’s tavern. Jerry Alexander, local author, will display a replica moonshine still and talk with visitors about the role of homemade drink in South Carolina history. Over a 40-year career, Alexander published specialty magazines on fishing, boating, and tourism as well as the Pickens Sentinel. He has authored five books, including Where Have All Our Moonshiners Gone?, and speaks for groups and at events all across the western Carolinas.

Guided tours of the Price House and slave cabin will be available and Blacksmith Bruce Mills will be working at the forge. BBQ and baked goods–favorite foods of today’s South Carolinian–will be available for purchase.

Taste of the Backcountry is from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 7 at Historic Price House located at 1200 Oak View Farms Road near Woodruff. Admission is $6.00 for adults, $4.00 for children 6-17 years, and free for children 5 years or younger. For event information and/or directions to the site, call 864-576-6546 or email

The Price House, slave cabin, and surrounding forest tell of the environment-altering work done by settlers and slaves to transform the Backcountry frontier into a fully-integrated part of the early United States. Thomas and Ann Price built the house that bears their name about 1795. Mr. Price ran a general store, post office, and “house of publick entertainment” (tavern or inn) that provided beds, food, and drink to stagecoach travelers. Enslaved African Americans performed much of the work for these businesses and labored in the fields of Mr. Price’s 2,000-acre farm. These slaves lived in quarters not unlike the slave cabin located on the site today. Visitors to Price House may tour the brick home, the slave cabin, and hike the site’s nature trail.

The Historical Association’s activities and events are supported in part by The Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg and its donors, the South Carolina Arts Commission which receives funding from The National Endowment for the Arts, the City and County of Spartanburg, and by corporate and individual partners.

For more information, visit, see photos from our special events on Flickr at, like us on Facebook at, or follow us on Twitter at

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