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View Poll Results: What states are "Southern".
Alabama 8 17.78%
Georgia 3 6.67%
Florida 2 4.44%
Mississippi 7 15.56%
Tennessee 1 2.22%
Kentucky 2 4.44%
North Carolina 7 15.56%
South Carolina 1 2.22%
Virginia 2 4.44%
Louisiana 2 4.44%
Texas 5 11.11%
Oklahoma 1 2.22%
Missouri 0 0%
Maryland 4 8.89%
Delaware 0 0%
Voters: 45. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-07-2011, 05:10 PM
 
Location: West Tennessee
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Originally Posted by stlouisan View Post
Well, one thing we do have in common is that we agree and appear to have similar points of view on many things and are from the same state. So even if we don't have much culturally in common, I still consider you one of the better friends I've met on here.
Same to you. There aren't too many people on here who actually argue with facts to back it up.
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:42 PM
 
10,167 posts, read 17,125,548 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stlouisan View Post
I for one was sort of shocked about West Virginia having only a 25% identification rate. i can certainly say that except for the northern and eastern panhandles, it's pretty tough for me to associate WV with anything but the South. Only 84 were interviewed, so maybe a bigger sampling would have given us something else. But I guess WV's status in the Civil War could have aided in the percentages. That was the only state in which I would do a recount if I had to.
Just to note, StLouisian, the percentage base was the figure of those surveyed in each of the 14 bi-annual polls spanning 7 years. That is to say, that 84 -- to use the example of West Virginia -- was how many people in the state responded in each time a seperate one was done. Therefore, the figures given in the table are the aggregate over the years. I hope that makes sense! LOL

But I agree with your overall assessment that I too would have thought West Virginia might be a little higher that the data indicates. As our friend Bass and Catfish noted, it seems in many ways to be the quintensential "Border State."

Po-Boy had a good observation about Oklahoma as well. On the surface of things, Oklahoma (and I live about 20 miles from the Red River), has a certain reputation as "Middle America" and "Indian territory" rather than "Southern". But at the same time, at least the southern and eastern parts of it were heavily settled by pioneers from the southeastern states, and the Southern influence is very noteable...certainly when compared with the neighboring state of Kansas. So, really, it might should not be so surprising that a majority of residents would claim a Southern identity.

On a related tangent, this is the official Oklahoma state meal. Not only is it clearly Southern...but it makes me hungry! LOL

Oklahoma State Meal

Oklahoma designated an official state meal In 1988 consisting of fried okra, squash, cornbread, barbecue pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries, chicken fried steak, pecan pie, and black-eyed peas.
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:53 PM
 
Location: Jefferson City 4 days a week, St. Louis 3 days a week
2,709 posts, read 4,232,269 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasReb View Post
Just to note, StLouisian, the percentage base was the figure of those surveyed in each of the 14 bi-annual polls spanning 7 years. That is to say, that 84 -- to use the example of West Virginia -- was how many people in the state responded in each time a seperate one was done. Therefore, the figures given in the table are the aggregate over the years. I hope that makes sense! LOL

But I agree with your overall assessment that I too would have thought West Virginia might be a little higher that the data indicates. As our friend Bass and Catfish noted, it seems in many ways to be the quintensential "Border State."

Po-Boy had a good observation about Oklahoma as well. On the surface of things, Oklahoma (and I live about 20 miles from the Red River), has a certain reputation as "Middle America" and "Indian territory" rather than "Southern". But at the same time, at least the southern and eastern parts of it were heavily settled by pioneers from the southeastern states, and the Southern influence is very noteable...certainly when compared with the neighboring state of Kansas. So, really, it might should not be so surprising that a majority of residents would claim a Southern identity.

On a related tangent, this is the official Oklahoma state meal. Not only is it clearly Southern...but it makes me hungry! LOL

Oklahoma State Meal

Oklahoma designated an official state meal In 1988 consisting of fried okra, squash, cornbread, barbecue pork, biscuits, sausage and gravy, grits, corn, strawberries, chicken fried steak, pecan pie, and black-eyed peas.
I won't argue with that. West Virginia is a strange state, probably the strangest one in the country. It had the strangest entrance, that's for sure. Only state in this whole country to be formed through a war. That may be all that needs to be said as far as making it unique...that sets it apart from all other states.
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Old 11-07-2011, 08:11 PM
 
10,167 posts, read 17,125,548 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stlouisan View Post
I won't argue with that. West Virginia is a strange state, probably the strangest one in the country. It had the strangest entrance, that's for sure. Only state in this whole country to be formed through a war. That may be all that needs to be said as far as making it unique...that sets it apart from all other states.
Your native state of Missouri is another that I would consider a true "Border State." While I wouldn't call it "Southern" (of course, this is only in my own estimation), I definitely don't really see it as "Midwestern" either. At least in the sense I just can't quite place it in the same class as Kansas or Iowa...

I really don't know. I had a college professor who was from the St. Louis area (he was my faculty advisor) and it is striking that some of his reasons for saying Missouri is not "part of the South" were very close to your own.

I think, historically, there is little question it (Missouri) has some definite Southern traits...especially the further "south" one goes.

Far be it from me to argue against natives of Missouri who clearly state they are not Southern. There are many Texans who do the same thing...in a qualified sense. There is a very clear difference, I think, in that the reason many Texans do so is not because they shun a Southern identity, but rather that they think of themselves as Texans first, and Southerners a somewhat distant second. Very few native Texans (at least those who go back a generation or more) will deny that they are Southern and live in the South. But this is in contrast with many residents of, say, Mississippi/Alabama/Georgia, who see their whole identity wrapped up in how "Southern" they are.

I hasten to add the above is not a "put down." Not in the least and on the contrary, I am of Deep South ancestry myself and am very proud of that fact. It is just that Texas has a unique history and self-identity that trancends a Southern one. Perhaps part of the reason is that, unlike the states of the Deep South, the post-bellum frontier allowed Texans (and the southeastern pioneers who came west to get a new start) to put "the War" behind them in a way not possible for those who remained in the Deep South states. Thus, it was only natural for them to embrace an "Old South" identity upon which to rebuild. Whereas, again, in Texas, such wasn't quite as strong. As someone observant once said about the state, "Texas is a Southern state, certainly, but not completely in or of the South..."

To come back the full circle on the question -- and I know I have rambled! LOL -- Missouri didn't really ever embrace a Southern identity all that much after the conflict. Which is sorta strange, it seems to me a bit, as its residents embraced the "Southern cause" at about the same percentage rate as did Kentuckians. However, for some reason that I expect you would know better than I, the two "border states" (by "Civil War" standards) went different ways after it was all over. Kentucky embraced the Lost Cause and the South...whereas Missouri sorta went its own way...

It is interesting, at any rate...!
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Old 11-07-2011, 11:02 PM
 
Location: Jefferson City 4 days a week, St. Louis 3 days a week
2,709 posts, read 4,232,269 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexasReb View Post
Your native state of Missouri is another that I would consider a true "Border State." While I wouldn't call it "Southern" (of course, this is only in my own estimation), I definitely don't really see it as "Midwestern" either. At least in the sense I just can't quite place it in the same class as Kansas or Iowa...

I really don't know. I had a college professor who was from the St. Louis area (he was my faculty advisor) and it is striking that some of his reasons for saying Missouri is not "part of the South" were very close to your own.

I think, historically, there is little question it (Missouri) has some definite Southern traits...especially the further "south" one goes.

Far be it from me to argue against natives of Missouri who clearly state they are not Southern. There are many Texans who do the same thing...in a qualified sense. There is a very clear difference, I think, in that the reason many Texans do so is not because they shun a Southern identity, but rather that they think of themselves as Texans first, and Southerners a somewhat distant second. Very few native Texans (at least those who go back a generation or more) will deny that they are Southern and live in the South. But this is in contrast with many residents of, say, Mississippi/Alabama/Georgia, who see their whole identity wrapped up in how "Southern" they are.

I hasten to add the above is not a "put down." Not in the least and on the contrary, I am of Deep South ancestry myself and am very proud of that fact. It is just that Texas has a unique history and self-identity that trancends a Southern one. Perhaps part of the reason is that, unlike the states of the Deep South, the post-bellum frontier allowed Texans (and the southeastern pioneers who came west to get a new start) to put "the War" behind them in a way not possible for those who remained in the Deep South states. Thus, it was only natural for them to embrace an "Old South" identity upon which to rebuild. Whereas, again, in Texas, such wasn't quite as strong. As someone observant once said about the state, "Texas is a Southern state, certainly, but not completely in or of the South..."

To come back the full circle on the question -- and I know I have rambled! LOL -- Missouri didn't really ever embrace a Southern identity all that much after the conflict. Which is sorta strange, it seems to me a bit, as its residents embraced the "Southern cause" at about the same percentage rate as did Kentuckians. However, for some reason that I expect you would know better than I, the two "border states" (by "Civil War" standards) went different ways after it was all over. Kentucky embraced the Lost Cause and the South...whereas Missouri sorta went its own way...

It is interesting, at any rate...!
Missouri is an interesting state too, I won't deny it. But for the most part, the only truly Southern parts of the state are the bootheel and far south central Missouri. The bootheel is unquestionably a part of the south...as gunner has said, very different from the rest of the state. I would say that roughly 25% of the state identifies as southern, (in the lowest quarter of the of the state), 25% is undecided (second to lowest quarter of the state) and the remaining 50% identifies more as Midwestern. So to answer your question, and essentially agree with you, Missouri is a Midwestern state with Southern influences, moreso than its fellow Midwestern states due to its history. The same could be said of Maryland and Delaware with respect to the Northeast. Missouri essentially assumed a Midwestern identity some time after the Civil War...it is has been called Midwestern by most of its residents and the majority of the country well over 100 years now. It could also be argued that Kentucky has many more Midwestern and northern influences than the rest of the south except for West Virginia and Virginia. I still tend to identify West Virginia with the south just because very little about it tells me the majority of it isn't the south. At any rate, it's fairly clear at least to me except with West Virginia what region each historic border state belongs in today, but each border and edge state is influenced to a slight degree by other regions. That UNC survey said it all. Comparing Kentucky's 70% identification with Alabama's 90% identification clearly shows this. Even Texas is influenced to a degree by other regions. Nonetheless, it is clear with both KY and TX that their best fit is in the South.
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Old 11-08-2011, 12:15 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia
1,321 posts, read 2,748,324 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stlouisan View Post
I won't argue with that. West Virginia is a strange state, probably the strangest one in the country. It had the strangest entrance, that's for sure. Only state in this whole country to be formed through a war. That may be all that needs to be said as far as making it unique...that sets it apart from all other states.
I think that has to be kept in mind at all times. West Virginia was created against the wishes of most of the people living in it, it was a war-time creation and a way of "punishing" Virginia. But it also punished West Virginians. In order to maintain the fiction of the creation of the state generations of kids were taught a false history, which is probably why the UNC survey comes out so low. The historian John Alexander Williams wrote about West Virginia's educational system-"Traditionally school-books adopted what might be called the 'Soviet Encyclopedia' approach to local history..." West Virginians are taught that they became a state because they supported the Union, when in truth West Virginians supported the Confederacy to a greater degree than KY, MD, or MO, about 50%, and in my opinion probably a bit more. I recommend the new book by Mark Snell, West Virginia and the Civil War, for anyone interested in the state's wartime experience. He even called the statehood vote a "fiasco". There is no other state that is so consistently robbed of its history. If you go to Wikipedia and read about Beethoven, the first line says he "was a German composer and pianist" But there was no "Germany" when he was born, he was born in the Electorate of Cologne, part of the Holy Roman Empire. Next, look up Stonewall Jackson on Wikipedia, it says "Born January 21, 1824 (1824-01-21) Clarksburg, Virginia (now West Virginia)"

Gettysburg has 4 monuments to Union soldiers from West Virginia (even though half of them were from Ohio and PA). But there were probably about 4 times as many West Virginians in Confederate gray at Gettysburg than in Union blue, but there are no monument to them from the state.
The largest Confederate cavalry brigade there was mostly from West Virginia, Jenkin's Brigade, which included a lot of my relatives.

This I think shows the borders of the south better than any survey.



The top map is the 2000 US Census of Ancestry, cream color is "American", light blue is "German", and purple "African American". (Public domain)
The original is here-
http://www.valpo.edu/geomet/pics/geo...e/ancestry.gif

The second map is the extent of native Southern dialect as determined by the Univ. of Pennsylvania Telsur project. The map is from Wikipedia (public domain) but the original map is here-
South Regional Map

The third map is my copy of the religious identity survery by the Glenmary Research Center, which is here-
http://www.valpo.edu/geomet/pics/geo...rch_bodies.gif

Red is Baptist (all denom.), green is Methodist (all denom.), light blue is Catholic.
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Old 11-08-2011, 12:29 AM
 
Location: Jefferson City 4 days a week, St. Louis 3 days a week
2,709 posts, read 4,232,269 times
Reputation: 998
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobilee View Post
I think that has to be kept in mind at all times. West Virginia was created against the wishes of most of the people living in it, it was a war-time creation and a way of "punishing" Virginia. But it also punished West Virginians. In order to maintain the fiction of the creation of the state generations of kids were taught a false history, which is probably why the UNC survey comes out so low. The historian John Alexander Williams wrote about West Virginia's educational system-"Traditionally school-books adopted what might be called the 'Soviet Encyclopedia' approach to local history..." West Virginians are taught that they became a state because they supported the Union, when in truth West Virginians supported the Confederacy to a greater degree than KY, MD, or MO, about 50%, and in my opinion probably a bit more. I recommend the new book by Mark Snell, West Virginia and the Civil War, for anyone interested in the state's wartime experience. He even called the statehood vote a "fiasco". There is no other state that is so consistently robbed of its history. If you go to Wikipedia and read about Beethoven, the first line says he "was a German composer and pianist" But there was no "Germany" when he was born, he was born in the Electorate of Cologne, part of the Holy Roman Empire. Next, look up Stonewall Jackson on Wikipedia, it says "Born January 21, 1824 (1824-01-21) Clarksburg, Virginia (now West Virginia)"

Gettysburg has 4 monuments to Union soldiers from West Virginia (even though half of them were from Ohio and PA). But there were probably about 4 times as many West Virginians in Confederate gray at Gettysburg than in Union blue, but there are no monument to them from the state.
The largest Confederate cavalry brigade there was mostly from West Virginia, Jenkin's Brigade, which included a lot of my relatives.

This I think shows the borders of the south better than any survey.



The top map is the 2000 US Census of Ancestry, cream color is "American", light blue is "German", and purple "African American". (Public domain)
The original is here-
http://www.valpo.edu/geomet/pics/geo...e/ancestry.gif

The second map is the extent of native Southern dialect as determined by the Univ. of Pennsylvania Telsur project. The map is from Wikipedia (public domain) but the original map is here-
South Regional Map

The third map is my copy of the religious identity survery by the Glenmary Research Center, which is here-
http://www.valpo.edu/geomet/pics/geo...rch_bodies.gif

Red is Baptist (all denom.), green is Methodist (all denom.), light blue is Catholic.
The second two maps I think are good...the third map i think is good except for Missouri....Missouri is almost equally split between Catholics and Baptists in terms of actual percentages. You'll also notice that the Catholic areas are where the majority of its population resides. Another 2000 map from that same area will show Catholics to comprise moderate to large portions of just about every Missouri county...very different from the rest of the South. I agree 100% with the dialect maps. Especially since my dad lived in Clarksburg as a kid briefly...he described himself as living about as on the cultural Mason-Dixon line as he'd ever lived, although he also lived in Joplin, Missouri, which is on that same cultural dividing line. The blue counties when combined outnumber the rest of the people living in the state..looking at the Catholic percentages of the red counties is also interesting because you will notice them to contain notable numbers of Catholics, unlike the rest of the south. Only Louisiana, Florida, and Texas have significant Catholic populations. Much of that is due to Florida having many Northerners and Hispanics. The same thing applies to Texas. Louisiana's Creole and French influences, in addition to New Orleans, give it the Catholic population it currently has. If you look carefully, you will see that quite a few of the red Missouri counties also have significant Catholic populations. Virtually every county in every southern state except TX, FL, and LA for the reasons explained above has little to no significant Catholic populations. Missouri when looking at the Catholic map actually resembles Indiana and Ohio more than the South. This is about as good an illustration as any that the third map is inconsistent where my home state is concerned. Catholicism is more predominant in urban areas, at least in the central parts of the state. In rural and southern urban parts of missouri, Baptism is more predominant. I generally tend to use the Catholic map because it is more consistent with the other two maps you provided, and when combined with your maps paints a fuller picture. The link is below.

http://www.uwec.edu/geography/ivogel...8/catholic.gif


Last edited by stlouisan; 11-08-2011 at 12:58 AM..
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Old 11-08-2011, 06:43 AM
 
Location: West Tennessee
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Originally Posted by stlouisan View Post
The second two maps I think are good...the third map i think is good except for Missouri....Missouri is almost equally split between Catholics and Baptists in terms of actual percentages. You'll also notice that the Catholic areas are where the majority of its population resides. Another 2000 map from that same area will show Catholics to comprise moderate to large portions of just about every Missouri county...very different from the rest of the South. I agree 100% with the dialect maps. Especially since my dad lived in Clarksburg as a kid briefly...he described himself as living about as on the cultural Mason-Dixon line as he'd ever lived, although he also lived in Joplin, Missouri, which is on that same cultural dividing line. The blue counties when combined outnumber the rest of the people living in the state..looking at the Catholic percentages of the red counties is also interesting because you will notice them to contain notable numbers of Catholics, unlike the rest of the south. Only Louisiana, Florida, and Texas have significant Catholic populations. Much of that is due to Florida having many Northerners and Hispanics. The same thing applies to Texas. Louisiana's Creole and French influences, in addition to New Orleans, give it the Catholic population it currently has. If you look carefully, you will see that quite a few of the red Missouri counties also have significant Catholic populations. Virtually every county in every southern state except TX, FL, and LA for the reasons explained above has little to no significant Catholic populations. Missouri when looking at the Catholic map actually resembles Indiana and Ohio more than the South. This is about as good an illustration as any that the third map is inconsistent where my home state is concerned. Catholicism is more predominant in urban areas, at least in the central parts of the state. In rural and southern urban parts of missouri, Baptism is more predominant. I generally tend to use the Catholic map because it is more consistent with the other two maps you provided, and when combined with your maps paints a fuller picture. The link is below.

http://www.uwec.edu/geography/ivogel...8/catholic.gif

Catholicism (and Lutheranism) are one of the few midwestern things about Cape Girardeau County. Funny thing is while the county is split almost evenly between Southern Baptists and Catholics, the rural areas in Cape County don't have any Catholic churches, they are all in either Cape city or Jackson. It's pretty neat; the part of the county I'm from is overwhelmingly Baptist & people of Scotch-Irish and English ancestry, which is a characteristic of the south. Between me and Cape city are some very midwestern Germans who practice Lutheranism. To this day the contrast is still very noticeable.
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Old 11-08-2011, 03:09 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
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The southern states of today are the former Confederate States minus south Florida and west Texas.
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Old 11-08-2011, 06:35 PM
 
Location: NC
4,112 posts, read 3,825,335 times
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I think in some cases the "Southeast" and the "South" overlap.

I consider GA, northern/northwestern FL, AL, TN, KY, southern half of WV, portions of western VA, portions of Western NC & western SC, southern MO, far southern IL, AR, parts of eastern OK, portions of eastern TX, northern LA and finally all of MS to be "the South".

Last edited by SNEwx_46; 11-08-2011 at 06:48 PM..
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