Skip to Main Content


APPALACHIA:  A History of Mountains and People

Introduced by the filmmakers Jamie Ross and Ross Spears


Project Director/Writer — Ross Spears

See Also: Complete Bio

Ross Spears  is considered one of the most accomplished documentary filmmakers now working in the United States and has won such prestigious awards as a Lyndhurst Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Tennessee Governor's Awards in both the Arts and Humanities, and --as you just heard -- an Academy Award Nomination for Best Feature Documentary. William Sloan of the Museum of Modern Art wrote that "Spears has made a lasting and significant contribution to American film. All of his works possess a rare vigor and discipline that is unique."

Co-Producer/Writer — Jamie Ross

See Also: Complete Bio

Jamie Ross has been working with the James Agee Film Project for over twenty-five years as an editor, director, researcher, writer and producer. She was the main researcher and writer for Long Shadows, a film on the legacy of the American Civil War. More recently she has served on the curatorial board for the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. Her roots in the region go back thousands of years through her Catawba and Miami ancestors and she has brought her passion for the region as well as her many years experience as a researcher and filmmaker to the making of APPALACHIA. The result is as one viewer put it: "pure poetry."


Funded by a major grant from
the National Science Foundation

Additional funding provided by
the Arthur Vining Davis Foundatons
National Endowment for the Humanities
Southern Humanities Media Fund
Cherokee Preservation Foundation
Appalachian Regional Commission
Tennessee Arts Commission

further funding by the Humanites Councils of
North Carolina
South Carolina
West Virginia


Ready for the World


A half billion years is a long time