Download Full Text (350 KB)

Download SNP021.pdf (194 KB)


Carter, Walter




1 audio file (running time: 1:01:14)

Interview Number


Location of Interview

Various sites in Shenandoah National Park

Date of Interview



Records the reminiscences of Walter Carter, whose family owned apple orchards on Dickey Ridge, just south of Front Royal, Virginia, in the decades preceding the establishment of Shenandoah National Park. Describes the physical layout of the the orchards and surrounding towns. Discusses the demise of the apple industry in that part of the Shenandoah Valley due to a shrinking work force, as local families were evicted by the state to make room for the park. In the years prior to the Second World War, the primary customer for the Carter's apples, the United Kingdom, placed restrictive tariffs on U.S. grown apples which made it impossible to compete with fruit from Canada and New Zealand. The second part of the interview consists of a driving tour of the orchard area, with Mr. Carter describing the former locations of buildings, roads, home sites and cemeteries. The group is joined by Mr. Carter's wife, Caroline Carter, whose own recollections and comments are included in the discussion. The Carters make numerous references to local families and landowners. Includes comments on the construction of Skyline Drive, which, while providing north-south access along the crests of the Blue Ridge Mountains, resulted in the closing of numerous east-west routes across the mountains.


The copyright interests in this collection have been transferred to the James Madison University Special Collections Library. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library Reference Desk (

Personal Names

Carter, Walter H., (Walter Hansbrough), 1915-2003, Interviews; Carter, Caroline Interviews

Family Names

Carter family


Skyland Orchards (Va.); Apples – Virginia; Orchards – Virginia; Apple industry -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) – History; Apple industry -- Virginia – History; Tariff -- England – History; Agriculture -- Appalachian Region, Southern; Agriculture -- Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) – History; Land use -- Government policy -- United States.

Place Names

Dickey Ridge (Va.) – History; Browntown (Va.) – History; Albemarle County (Va.) – History; Warren County (Va.) – History; Shenandoah National Park (Va.) -- History, Local; Skyline Drive (Va.) – History.


Steeber, Ken; Smith, Walter; Struthers, Howard; Updike, Gloria.


Edwards, Victoria M

Collection Title

Shenandoah National Park oral history collection

Collection Number

SdArch SNP

Streaming Media

Media is loading
(SNP021) Walter Carter interviewed by Ken Steeber, with Walter Smith, Gloria Updike and Howard Struthers, transcribed by Victoria M. Edwards



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.