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Evelyn Pluhar-Adams, Ph.D.
Professor of Philosophy
The Pennsylvania State University, Fayette Campus
"Hewn from the Rock is an eloquent, sensitive, and honest mental map of what once was in Eastern Kentucky. Reading it brings to mind sights, smells, and tastes of lives lived courageously, intentionally, and sturdily. We owe Dr. Begley—in the tradition of Harry Caudill and Jesse Stuart—a debt for taking the time to pass these lives and traditions on to us."
Director, Loyal Jones Appalachian Center
Goode Professor of Appalachian Studies, Associate Professor of History
"This is an engaging memoir about an aspiring family who were bone and blood of a notably unprogressive part of eastern Kentucky. The main subject of the narrative is John D Begley, a man of solid character who struggled to get enough education to become an imaginative schoolteacher, principal, and an effective school superintendent in a country that sorely needed to educate its people. This story is also about his wife Myrtle Jones Begley, who was also an effective teacher and parent, and their two boys, Grant, the author of this memoir, and his brother Philip, both of whom were inspired by their parents to become medical doctors in distinguished careers. Dr. Begley’s hope is that the lives of John D and Myrtle Begley will negate some of the persistent stereotypes about Appalachian people."
Retired Director, Berea College Appalachian Center