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Smokestacks in the Hills – Rural-Industrial Workers in West Virginia - Illinois Scholarship Online
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Smokestacks in the Hills: Rural-Industrial Workers in West Virginia

Lou Martin


Long considered an urban phenomenon, industrialization also transformed the American countryside. This book weaves the narrative of how the relocation of steel and pottery factories to Hancock County, West Virginia, created a rural and small-town working class—and what that meant for communities and for labor. As the book shows, access to land in and around steel and pottery towns allowed residents to preserve rural habits and culture. Workers in these places valued place and local community. Because of their belief in localism, an individualistic ethic of “making do,” and company loyalty, the ... More

Keywords: industrialization, localism, industrial capitalism, capital mobility, American countryside, Hancock County, working class

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780252039454
Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017 DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252039454.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Lou Martin, author
Chatham University