How did the Civil War impact the economy and culture of Appalachia?
The culture was ripped apart by various groups that held different views on slavery, even families were affected. Although the issue of slavery did not emerge in Appalachia as the dominant controversy of the Civil War era, the war did have an impact in the mountain areas of the South. The relative absence of slavery in the mountains was the result of the geographic and economic conditions found there. Because of the mountain terrain, it was simply not profitable to develop commercial agriculture based upon a slave workforce, and what slavery did exist in Appalachia was concentrated in the larger valleys of Virginia and Tennessee. As the result of their Civil War experiences, a great many northerners came into contact with the southern mountains, and many were surprised by what they found. Great mineral and timber wealth was coupled with a romantic beauty, just at a time when untamed urban growth, foreign immigration, and technological developments were beginning to unalterably change northern urban society. Capitalists responded to the call of profits, but writers, missionary workers, and teachers accompanied the industrialists into the mountains, and their work there was in some ways as substantial and the effects as long lasting as those of their entrepreneurial counterparts.