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Old 05-01-2013, 08:25 PM
 
118 posts, read 198,580 times
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I'm curious as to why some inhabitants of the deep south staunchly refute the fact that Kentucky is a southern state. Obviously it's not the deep south, but includes parts of the Upper and Mid-South. Climatically the entire state is the northern limit of the humid subtropical climate zone (Koppen cFa), and while obviously closer to the middle of the country than, say, Alabama, the climate zones correspond to the entire continent of North America, in which Kentucky is in the southeast interior portion. Flora and fauna drastically change when you cross the Ohio as well, sweetgum becomes profuse, as do several species of southern oak (cherrybark, southern red, willow, overcup, post, blackjack, and more). Southern magnolias line city streets, and houses have beautiful dogwoods and azaleas out front. Our two biggest agricultural products are tobacco and cattle, with thoroughbred horses up there, too. We got mountains full of oak, hickory and yellow pines with massive amounts of kudzu, and out west we got cypress and tupelo swamps framed by cotton fields and pecan orchards. We eat lots of smoked pigs, fried chicken and catfish, and all your usual southern fare save gulf seafood. We talk with a southern accent. As far as the war went, our governor at the time, Beriah MacGoffin, favored secession, but could not convince a legislature full of bureaucrats with economic ties to the north to sever those money lines. Beriah refused Lincoln's initial request for militiamen, stating he would not give a soul to fight "our sister southern states." Representatives from nearly every county convened at Russellville to draft a letter of secession, which was accepted by CSA president, and Kentucky native, Jefferson Davis. Kentucky was admitted to the CSA and represented by the central star on the battle flag, but by then Kentucky had been strategically invaded and the government operated in exile. Those who have long family lines here embrace their heritage, and the majority of southerners embrace the unique corner of the South that is Ole Kaintuck, but I'm curious why those who don't... don't.
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Old 05-01-2013, 08:37 PM
 
Location: Rome, Georgia
2,706 posts, read 3,336,084 times
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I like Kentucky, but the feel when I'm there is nothing at all like it is at home, or Alabama/Mississippi. Even Tennessee doesn't have quite the same feel. While Kentucky may contain elements of southern culture, southern culture is generalized by deep south culture. It's hard to to put a finger on really. It's like asking why maroon isn't considered red. There's some red in there, sure, but it's not the same. Kentucky is about as southern as it's geography let's it be.
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Old 05-01-2013, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Rome, Georgia
2,706 posts, read 3,336,084 times
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Just re-read my post. I'm not some "Deep South Elitist" or anything close to that. It's not that one culture is necessarily better than the other. Just that they are different.
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Old 05-01-2013, 08:50 PM
 
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The Upper South is just as southern as the Deep South...they aren't the same by a long shot, but they are both still southern culture. I don't believe for a second that one is "more southern" than the other.
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Old 05-01-2013, 09:07 PM
 
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I guess this is poised at those "Deep South Elitists". I'm aware of the varied subcultures within Southern culture, but some think theirs is the only one that's any count. Like saying a deep south accent is THE southern accent. Our entire region is varied, but we have so much that ties us together. Being Kentuckians we obviously have to stare a different culture in the face across that big river, and it's remarkable how quick the culture and climate change once you cross it. Unique cultures across our entire country are being diluted by the cable/internet generation as well as transplants moving in, but those of us with long family lines here are proudly Southern, and happy to be most southbound travelers first taste of Southern culture.
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Old 05-01-2013, 09:21 PM
 
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Kentucky is every bit of southern as the "deep south".

Living in Georgia, I have always felt that Kentucky seems very southern. Exceptions include out near Paducah, Kentucky, as well as locations near the Ohio River, such as Ashland or around Cincinnati. However, Lexington, Bowling Green, Corbin, Elizabethtown and parts of the Louisville area: Southern.

Kentucky is southern.

By the way, for Georgia Frog, he lives in Rome, Georgia, which topographically and culturally is not the deep south, but is more like the Tennessee Valley than anything. It's practically the same as southeast Tennessee. Northwest Georgia, including the counties of Dade, Catoosa, Walker, Murray, Whitfield, Gordon, Chatooga, Floyd, Polk, and parts of Bartow are very different from the rest of the state. That part of the state seems much more similar to Tennessee and northern Alabama, while the rest of the state is more like the Carolinas, Florida, or central Alabama.
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Old 05-01-2013, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Rome, Georgia
2,706 posts, read 3,336,084 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sound of Reason View Post
Kentucky is every bit of southern as the "deep south".

Living in Georgia, I have always felt that Kentucky seems very southern. Exceptions include out near Paducah, Kentucky, as well as locations near the Ohio River, such as Ashland or around Cincinnati. However, Lexington, Bowling Green, Corbin, Elizabethtown and parts of the Louisville area: Southern.

Kentucky is southern.

By the way, for Georgia Frog, he lives in Rome, Georgia, which topographically and culturally is not the deep south, but is more like the Tennessee Valley than anything. It's practically the same as southeast Tennessee. Northwest Georgia, including the counties of Dade, Catoosa, Walker, Murray, Whitfield, Gordon, Chatooga, Floyd, Polk, and parts of Bartow are very different from the rest of the state. That part of the state seems much more similar to Tennessee and northern Alabama, while the rest of the state is more like the Carolinas, Florida, or central Alabama.
That's not a bad observation, with a couple of notable exceptions.

1) To say that Rome, Georgia is not part of the Deep South is laughable. I admit that it does have a bit of a different feel than my home county of Fayette, but it is more like Columbus than it is Chattanooga, and certainly doesn't have the Knoxville/Nashville feel. Rome is very much a Georgia town. I suppose Savannah and Asheville have much in common? Come on.

2) So now North Georgia and Northern Alabama aren't really the Deep South? And Florida? Really? up to what point? I suppose you should draw us a map of the Deep South. Please include indications of how Fayette County, Georgia is more like any county in Florida than it is Floyd county, Georgia. What are you talking about? TIL that the deep south is a circle containing Tallahassee, Macon, and Montgomery. That is all.
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Old 05-01-2013, 09:44 PM
 
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So, in conclusion...the South is a multi-dimensional region with all different kinds/styles/intensities of southern culture, ranging from South Florida to the Gulf Coast to rural Mississippi to Appalachia to the Ozarks to Texas to NOVA to Kentucky etc. It's the diversity of subcultures that makes the South so rich and interesting. Too many people try to define southern culture in a box, when it simply can't be defined that way!
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Old 05-01-2013, 09:49 PM
 
118 posts, read 198,580 times
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Rome is a beautiful area nonetheless. I like your answer Sound of Reason, but I would have to disagree only about Paducah. The city is the mouth of the Tennessee River, and Clarks River. There are armadillo there and vast bottomland forests and cypress swamps. Everyone I've met from there have been typical Southerners, but you are right that like in some Ohio river towns the culture does collide there. I attribute a lot of this to the fact that it's the closest major city to LBL, which draws folks from all over on Vacation, just like all over the south.
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Old 05-01-2013, 09:53 PM
 
Location: Rome, Georgia
2,706 posts, read 3,336,084 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeTarheel View Post
So, in conclusion...the South is a multi-dimensional region with all different kinds/styles/intensities of southern culture, ranging from South Florida to the Gulf Coast to rural Mississippi to Appalachia to the Ozarks to Texas to NOVA to Kentucky etc. It's the diversity of subcultures that makes the South so rich and interesting. Too many people try to define southern culture in a box, when it simply can't be defined that way!
This post wins, and I concede.
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