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This is My Story

  I remember the day my sister called and told me that she thought our grandmother’s “people” came from East Tennessee. I capitalized “east” and am fully aware that East Tennessee isn’t a state. It is a place, a place in the world where the Appalachian mountains rise and fall, blue after blue, like gentle waves on a calm sea. When light breaks, the valleys puff up wisps of fog from their shadows. The Cumberland Plateau stretching from Kentucky to Alabama separates the east from Middle Tennessee another of the state’s “grand divisions." The plateau created a barrier isolating East Tennessee for much of the state's early history.   I’m not sure what year Leanne called to tell me about her sleuthing, but I know I was talking on a portable phone, (an in-house wireless system that liberated us from the cord). I do know it was before I held a phone in my hand like it was an extension of my brain.  Those in my generation would agree our historical timeline is divided like Tennessee i

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