Lovesick Blues + Lyrics

By Wayne Erbsen

It was Saturday night, June 11, 1949, when 25-year-old Hank Williams walked onto the stage of the Grand Ole Opry for the first time and began singing Lovesick Blues. The audience was electrified. No other performer had ever been brought back to the stage of the Grand Ole Opry for six encores, as Williams was that night. With his debut of Lovesick Blues, a triumphant Hank Williams basked in the glow of his newfound fame. Meanwhile, Emmett Miller, who first recorded Lovesick Blues, sat at home, completely forgotten and down on his luck.


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Swannanoa Tunnel

Singing Rails (book) by Wayne Erbsen

Shielded from the rest of the state by towering mountains, residents in western North Carolina longed to connect to the rail system then being rebuilt after its near destruction during the Civil War. The chief obstacle to the construction was massive Old Fort Mountain, just east of Asheville, North Carolina. The engineer chosen for the task of building the difficult road was ex-Confederate major James Wilson.

Construction of the road began in 1877. Armed with $800,000 in state funds and 500 black convict laborers, Wilson was undaunted by the fact that his railroad would have to climb some 891 feet

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