Degree Name

MALS (Master of Arts in Liberal Studies)


Liberal Studies

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Michael R. Pinner

Committee Members

Elwood D. Watson, Marie Tedesco


Documented as serving in the midwife capacity from the 1880s to the 1930s, the “granny-woman,” often was the only line of defense regarding childbirth support practices for many childbearing age women living in the region during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The early twentieth century saw the granny-women discredited and subject to elimination as a result of a purposeful campaign conducted by the male-dominated medical profession. Using knowledge of herbal remedies, the granny-woman played an integral part in the survival of the inhabitants of the region, especially related to childbirth. These centuries-old, herbal-based ministrations have been explored to aid in dispelling the erroneous conclusions related to the vital community role fulfilled by the Southern Appalachian granny-woman. Possessing knowledge of herbal-based childbirth prevention measures, the Southern Appalachian granny-woman rarely provided specifics related to the use of these measures by the women living in the region during that era.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.