Want to read stories about these artists when they were West Virginia schoolchildren?
Want to hear their music?
Just click on their pictures.

Bill Withers Explore the life and times of Bill Withers. Click on his photo to get to the stories and music.
Explore the life and times of Hazel Dickens. Click on her photo to get to the stories and music. Hazel Dickens
Billy Edd Wheeler Explore the life and times of Billy Edd Wheeler. Click on his photo to get to the stories and music.
Special Bonus: Billy Edd’s early years in a coal camp provide a wonderful way to teach coal camp history through the eyes of a child. Click here for ideas about ways to use his stories.
Ideas for Classroom Activities

As a Nashville songwriter, Billy Edd Wheeler wrote one million-selling hit after another. Musicians like Johnny Cash, Elvis, the Jefferson Airplane and Neil Young recorded his songs.

He grew up in a tiny Boone County coal camp, high on a mountain, miles away from any other town. His town, Highcoal, was completely owned by a coal company. He learned to play guitar on a Sears Roebuck guitar his mother got him for Christmas for $14.

Billy Edd’s entertaining stories about his childhood open a rare window into coal camp life. He also published several books and wrote more than dozen plays, including the Hatfields & McCoys outdoor drama.

 

Look at Billy Edd's website – www.billyeddwheeler.com
Read stories about Billy Edd as a boy growing up in a coal camp. Click here.
Listen to Billy Edd Wheeler’s songs:
Coal Tattoo (lyrics)
As performed by Billy Edd Wheeler
As performed by Kathy Mattea
Coward of the County (lyrics)
As performed by Billy Edd Wheeler
As performed by Kenny Rogers
Red Winged Blackbird (lyrics)
As performed by Kathy Mattea
It’s Been a Long Time (lyrics)
As performed by Michael Kline and Rich Kirby

The Reverend Mr. Black (lyrics)

As performed by Billy Edd Wheeler
As performed by The Kingston Trio
The Coming of the Roads (lyrics)
As performed by Billy Edd Wheeler

As performed by Mary Hopkins

Ode to the Little Brown Shack Out Back (lyrics)
As performed by Billy Edd Wheeler
High Flying Bird (lyrics)
To hear Richie Havens’ version of “High Flying Bird” click here.
For a version by the Jefferson Airplane, click here.
Watch an interview with Billy Edd Wheeler

Part 1

Part 2

Look at Billy Edd’s paintings – www.billyeddwheeler.com/paintings.htm

Crop and Sky Circles

"Crop & Sky Circles" by Billy Edd Wheeler
Billy Edd writes plays too! www.billyeddwheeler.com/other.htm
Hatfields and McCoys
For teachers: Here are some ways to use Billy Edd stories and songs in class.