Ralph Cave



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Cave, Ralph




1 audio file (running time: 1:22:32)

Interview Number


Location of Interview

Shenandoah National Park headquarters in Luray, Virginia

Date of Interview



Records the reminiscences of Ralph Cave, who was born and raised in Dark Hollow, Virginia, prior to the establishment of Shenandoah National Park in 1934. Describes his early home and family life, schooling, marriage and community events. Mr. Cave recounts the history of the Cave family in Dark Hollow as well as marriages and other interactions between the Caves and other local families. Numerous references are made to individual members of the Breeden, Thomas, and Weakley families. Describes his own experiences working on Skyline Drive and Camp Hoover in the early 1930s, as well as his personal memories of Skyland developer, George Pollock. Among the topics discussed are farming, raising of livestock, local wildlife and the bark peeling industry. Includes references to community activities such as corn shucking and apple butter boiling, herbal remedies and the record snows in the 1920s and 30s.


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Personal Names

Cave, Ralph, 1907-1996

Family Names

Cave family; Breden family; Weakley family


Mountain people -- Blue Ridge Mountains -- Social life and customs; Mountain life -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) – History; Mountain people -- Virginia -- Shenandoah National Park -- Social life and customs; Rural poor – Virginia; Country life -- Appalachian Region, Southern; Agriculture -- Appalachian Region, Southern; Food habits -- Appalachian Region, Southern; Blizzards – Virginia; Folklore -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) – History; Holidays -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) – History; Traditional medicine -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.); Distilling, Illicit – Virginia; Bark peeling -- Virginia -- Madison County – History; Forest products industry -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) – History; Land use -- Government policy -- United States

Place Names

Skyland (Va.); Skyline Drive (Va.); Camp Hoover (Va.) – History; Dark Hollow (Va.) – History; Madison County (Va.) – History; Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) -- Manners and customs; Shenandoah National Park (Va.) -- History, Local


Smith, Nancy


Marston, Sharon G.

Collection Title

Shenandoah National Park oral history collection

Collection Number

SdArch SNP

Streaming Media

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(SNP025) Ralph Cave interviewed by Nancy Smith, transcribed by Peggy C. Bradley



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