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‘I Go Deeper and Deeper into the Holler’: Photojournalist Don Dudenbostel’s Appalachian Adventures

Serpents on Bible.jpg
Credit Don Dudenbostel/River Gallery
Don Dudenbostel has photographed serpent handlers and other hidden or legendary aspects of Appalachian culture. His photos are currently on display at Chattanooga's River Gallery.

Don Dudenbostel’s photographs are featured this May in the River Gallery's exhibition Defining Roots.  Dudenbostel's photos document disappearing, hidden and infamous aspects of Appalachian culture.  Throughout the past few decades, he has photographed snake handlers, moonshiners (particularly legendary moonshiner Popcorn Sutton), cockfighters, Ku Klux Klan members and neo-Nazis.  “I try never to influence my images with personal feelings,” he says in this interview.

Dudenbostel’s work can be seen at the River Gallery in downtown Chattanooga, Tennessee, as well as his Web site and in the Vanishing Appalachia exhibit currently touring regional museums.