George Corbin



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Corbin, George T.




1 audio file (running time: 0:31:59)

Interview Number


Location of Interview

Falls Church, Virginia

Date of Interview



Records an interview conducted by Edward Garvey of the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club (PATC) with George Corbin, who lived in Nicholson Hollow, Virginia from 1888 to 1938. The Corbin homestead was located on part of the land turned over to the NPS by the state of Virginia in the 1930s. Corbin describes the circumstances at the time of the construction of the log cabin he built for his family in 1909. The logs for the cabin were harvested locally by Corbin, who then cut and shaped them using axes and other hand tools. Corbin recalls the day of the house raising when ten friends and neighbors joined him to assemble all of the walls and rafters within the course of a single day. The cabin was later turned over to the PATC for use as a trail shelter in 1954, and is listed on the National Registry of Historic Buildings as the George T. Corbin Cabin. Edward Garvey was part of the PATC crew that restored the cabin for public use. Corbin elaborates on local methods of raising and storing crops and vegetables, collecting tan bark, funerals and burial rituals, and gives a detailed account of his experiences distilling moonshine. Includes a discussion on the Corbin and Nicholson family cemetery, as well as the local schoolhouse and church. Mr. Corbin speaks at length of the genealogies of the Corbins and the Nicholsons, as well as many of the other local mountain families. Included are anecdotes regarding businessman and entrepreneur George Pollock, owner of Skyland resort, and several local residents.


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Personal Names

Corbin, George T., 1888-1978; Pollock, George Freeman, 1869-1949

Family Names

Corbin family; Nicholson family


United States. National Park Service; Potomac Appalachian Trail Club; George T. Corbin Cabin (Madison County, Va.); 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; Log cabins -- Virginia; Agriculture -- Appalachian Region, Southern; Food habits -- Appalachian Region, Southern; Bark peeling -- Virginia -- Madison County -- History; Distilling, Illicit -- Virginia; Funeral rites and ceremonies -- Appalachian Region, Southern.

Place Names

Blue Ridge Mountains -- Social life and customs; Nicholson Hollow (Va.) -- History; Skyland (Va.); Madison County (Va.) -- History; Shenandoah National Park (Va.) -- History, Local.


Garvey, Edward B.


Edwards, Victoria M.

Collection Title

Shenandoah National Park oral history collection

Collection Number

SdArch SNP

Streaming Media

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(SNP032) George Corbin interviewed by Edward Garvey, transcribed by Victoria M. Edwards



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