Locals at this hoedown appear to be wearing store-bought duds. Once the train arrived, Stone Countians had access to clothing just like the tourists in the Camp Clark postcard.
Some of the Arcadian resorts built dance floors and natives joined in with visitors. Distinctions between locals and visitors were not always clear.
Next month’s vintage photograph will show a Hall photo of a hillbilly lifestyle reenactment of the popular idea that Ozark natives were completely stuck in the frontier era. The word ‘hillbilly’ was first used in print around 1900 but did not come into wide popular use much before the 1920s.
Before that, the Ozarks, especially Arkansas, were represented in books and songs to be even more backward than they actually were. There is a cultural conservatism to the region but it has been exaggerated for touristic and commercial purposes.
(This feature is courtesy of Leland and Crystal Payton at Lens & Pen Press, publishers of all-color books on the Ozarks. Their new book, “James Fork of the White: Transformation of an Ozark River,” 354 all-color pages, has been published and is available at www.beautifulozarks.com ($35, postage paid) and on amazon.com and Barnes & Noble. Their earlier river book, Damming the Osage, can be at seen www.dammingtheosage.com)