If you had to record a soundtrack for the South, you’d probably get a guitar, a banjo, a harmonica, maybe a mandolin, and, of course, a fiddle.
There might be no instrument that better exemplifies that Bluegrass, “old timey” sound than the fiddle. On Sept. 17, Hagood Mill in Pickens
will be celebrating that music with its Annual Old Time Fiddler’s Convention
The convention is actually restoring a Southern tradition. In the early 1900s, fiddlin’ contests were held throughout the South, including at South Carolina’s Clemson College campus.
This year’s fiddlin’ contest will award cash prizes to the best performers in a variety of categories: string back, fiddle, junior fiddle, banjo, guitar and the “Wildcat Open” which gives musicians playing other instruments a chance to get in on the fun.
The Old Time Fiddlin’ Convention is part of the “Third Saturday” series at Hagood Mill, which offers visitors a chance to spend the day at the Mill enjoying special musical and family programming. Upcoming Third Saturday performances also will include the 10th Annual Hagood Mill Storytelling Festival, Selugadu V: A Native American Celebration, and Celtic Christmas.
In addition to the performances the Third Saturday celebrations also include exhibits and demonstrations about traditional arts and Upcountry
folklife. Demonstration topics might include blacksmithing, beekeeping, chair caning, or more than 20 other traditional crafts.
One of the knowledgeable demonstrators at Hagood Mill recently received a great honor. Reed Severance, a mechanical engineer who volunteers every Third Saturday, operates the corn mill. He was recently one of only 16 people in North America to become a Certified Miller in the Society for the Preservation of Old Mills.
The Hagood Mill Annual Old Time Fiddler’s Convention will take place on Sept. 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
for more information on Hagood Mill.