200 Stories for Missouri’s Bicentennial, JUNE 2021
200 Stories, June 2021
In Missouri’s bicentennial year, Missouri Folk Arts will share 200 stories over the course of 52 weeks in 2021 about folk and traditional arts in the Show Me State.
We kicked off June with Story 81 and wrapped up with Story 96.
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Barbara Culpepper TAAP Master Artist: 2013
Barbara Culpepper began quilting at eight years old, and she’s been quilting since she can remember. Her grandmother and mother taught her to all about fabrics (how to cut them and how to coordinate them). They, and she, often cut their quilts from patterns drawn onto and cut from old cereal boxes. Mrs. Culpepper’s favorite quilting partner was her late husband, Ray; they worked on projects well together, often for their community’s benefit. Over the years, they taught many children in their family and beyond at venues like Ozark National Scenic Riverways. From that work, they built and sold quilting kits for kids to encourage them to learn and sustain quilt making.
Here’s an example of a 4-patch the Culpeppers made and sold in 2013. https://www.facebook.com/CulpepperQuilts/photos/a.339428676191956/339429649525192/?type=3&theater
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Art Galbraith, TAAP Master Artist: 1988, 1989, 1990
Art Galbraith was born in the Ozark region between Missouri and Arkansas in 1909. He learned the Ozark style of fiddling at an early age from his Uncle Tobe, who learned from his grandfather Andrew Galbraith, a veteran of the war of 1812, who had migrated to Missouri from Tennessee in 1841. Rounder Records produced an album of Art Galbraith playing nineteen tunes. Occasionally, the LP can be found for sale on the web.
In his first two apprenticeships Mr. Galbraith taught Justin Bertholdie, better known in Nashville these days as Justin David, an award-winning touring artist. That first year, Galbraith’s good friend and backing guitarist Gordon McCann recorded the master fiddler and his apprentice in St. Louis during a site visit by a representative of the National Endowment for the Arts, which funds the project. Missouri State University’s Digital Collections made that recording available for everyone to hear on YouTube here: https://digitalcollections.missouristate.edu/digital/collection/McCann/id/858/
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In addition to historic preservation of its unique village, Historic Bethel German Colony is the non-profit host of the annual Bethel Youth Fiddle Camp, which kicked off yesterday and runs throughout the week. After a year hiatus due to the pandemic, young fiddlers and master musicians have gathered in the historic town in rural Shelby County to sustain old-time music via a full week of daily one-on-one lessons. This year’s instructors represent a mix of long-time master artists and previous campers all-grown-up.
And, don’t miss Adult Fiddle Camp, coming this October 2021. Contact information below to register!
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Robert Ault, TAAP master artist: 1988
Robert “Bob” Ault (1949-2012) was a professional performing artist, touring the country and the world who taught in the third annual Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program. Mr. Ault often performed ragtime banjo and piano via our Missouri Performing Traditions project in the 1990s. He and MPT roster artists toured Missouri venues to engage audiences in the array of the state’s living traditions.
Bob Ault performed often at ragtime festivals, working to sustain Missouri’s ragtime legacy and to elevate the memory of pianist John William Boone (1864-1927), known professionally as “Blind” Boone.
Recently, Columbia, Mo. visual artist David Spear completed a mural of Boone on College Avenue and shared video of his finished project, with audio of Bob Ault playing Blind Boone’s tunes. Look and listen at the link. https://fb.watch/61Wevk0ymZ/
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In the video below, Inman’s friend Jr. Marriott backs the fiddler on guitar at the 2016 Missouri State Fair.
Published July 9, 2021 by Missouri Folk Arts Staff