Sustainable Agriculture in the Southern Appalachian Mountains


Sustainable agriculture defines a method of farming that integrates agriculture and ecology. It evokes a system of crop production that emulates natural systems, creating a balance between economic and environmental resources. Sustainable agriculture entails a blending of traditional farming methods found throughout the Southern Appalachian region with the present scientific and technological advances of humankind. This document is designed as an introduction to the literature on agricultural sustainability in the Southern Appalachian Mountains available in the Belk library or the W.L Eury Appalachian Collection.

Introductory Text: 

Abramson, Rudy and Jean Haskell. 2006. Encyclopedia of Appalachia. Knoxville: The University of Tennessee Press. [agriculture: pgs 395-439] ASU App Coll F 106.E53 2006

Jodha, N.S., M. Banskota, and Tej Partap, eds. 1992. Sustainable Mountain Agriculture Vol 1 and Vol 2. London: Intermediate Technology Publications. ASU Main S 604.3 .S87 1992 v.1 and v.2.

Wojtkowski, Paul A. 2006. Introduction to Agroecology: Principles and Practices. Binghamton, NY: Food Products Press, an imprint of The Haworth Press, Inc. ASU Main S 589.7.W647 2006

Library of Congress Subject Headings: 

Highly Relevant:

  • Agriculture – Appalachian Mountains
  • Agriculture – Environmental Aspects
  • Agricultural Ecology
  • Agricultural Systems
  • Hill Farming
  • Sustainable Agriculture

Also Relevant:

  • Appalachian Region, Southern – Agriculture
  • Agricultural Conservation
  • Agricultural Innovations
  • Family farms

More General:

  • Agriculture
  • Agriculture – Economic Aspects
  • Agriculture - North Carolina
  • Organic Farming


  • Agriculture and Politics
  • Agriculture and State - North Carolina
  • Alternative Agriculture
  • Permaculture
  • Land Reform
  • Land Use, Rural
  • Traditional Farming
Clipping Files Subject Headings – W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection: 

Highly Relevant:

  • Agriculture

Also Relevant:

  • Apples
  • Bee Culture
  • Farm City Week - Watauga Co., NC
  • Watauga County - Farmers’ Market

More General:

  • Environment


  • Christmas Trees
  • Land Use
Library of Congress Call Numbers: 
  • S439-S482
  • S494.5
  • S 507.C46
  • S589.7
  • S604.3
  • S 604.5-S604.64
  • HD1746
  • S1-S790.3
  • HD1401-HD2210
  • HD9000
  • HD9005
  • F 291.2
  • HC 79.E5 – HC 79.F3
  • HD1332-1333.5
  • GN407.4-GN407.8

Berry, Wendell. 1977. The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture. San Francisco, CA: Sierra Club Books. ASU App Coll HD 1761. B47

Gaventa, John. 1984. “Land Ownership, Power, and Powerlessness in the Appalachian Highlands.” In Cultural Adaption to Mountain Environments. Eds. Pat D. Beaver and Burton L. Purrington. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press. ASU App Coll GN 2 .S9243 no.17

Gliessman, Stephen R. ed. 1990. Agroecology: Researching the Ecological Basis for Sustainable Agriculture. New York: Springer-Verlag. ASU Main S 589.7 .A38 1990

Netting, Robert McC. 1993. Smallholders, Householders: Farm Families and the Ecology of Intensive, Sustainable Agriculture. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press. ASU Main GN 407.4 .N48

Wigginton, Elliot, ed. 1972. The Foxfire Book. Garden City, NY: Anchor Press/Doubleday. ASU App Coll. F 291.2 .F6

Guides, Encyclopedias, and Dictionaries: 

Anderson, J.R. 1969. “United States of America.” In World Atlas of Agriculture: Under the Aegis of the International Association of Agricultural Economics, Vol 3, Americas. Committee for the World Atlas of Agriculture, eds. Novara, Italy: Instituto Geografico De Agostini S.p.A. [esp. pg. 409-465] ASU Ref Atlases G 1046.J1 W6 1969

North Carolina Agricultural Statistics. 1940-. Raleigh, NC: USDA, Cooperative Crop Rotation Service, NC Department of Agriculture. [Lib has bound: 1939-40; 1942-45; 1951; 1954; 1956; 1958; 1960-81; 1984-89; 1991- ] ASU Main HD 1775.N8 N56

Glossary of Agricultural Terms. 1984. The Food and Agriculture Section, Environment and Natural Resources Policy Division. Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress. ASU App Coll S 411 .G56

Thompson, Becky. 2008. Educational and Training Opportunities in Sustainable Agriculture, 18th ed. Beltsville, MD: USDA Agricultural Research Service, Alternative Farming Systems Information Center. [Lib has current edition only, also available online through the ASU catalog] ASU Govt US A 17.2


Appalachian Bibliography. 1980. Morganton, WV: West Virginia University Library. [agriculture: pgs. 12-24] ASU App Coll Z 1251.A7 A6 1980

DeMuth, Suzanne. 1993. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA): An Annotated Bibliography and Resource Guide. Beltsville, MD: USDA Agricultural Research Service, Alternative Farming Systems Information Center. Available online at

Graves, Glenna Horne. 1998. A Selected Bibliography on (Agri)culture and Modernization Relating to the Appalachian South. Lexington, KY: the compiler. ASU App Coll Z 5075.U6 A6 1988b

Harbster, Jennifer. 2003. Sustainable Agriculture: LC Science Tracer Bullet. Washington D. C.: Library of Congress. ASU GOVT LC 33.10:03-02

Ross, Charlotte T., ed. 1976. Bibliography of Southern Appalachia. Boone, NC: Appalachian Consortium Press. [agriculture: pgs. 1-6] ASU App Coll Z 1251.A7 B5x

Abstracts and Indices: 

Several useful online indices are accessible through the ASU catalog. Relevant key words include: “sustainable agriculture,” “alternative agriculture,” and “Appalachia.”

AGRICOLA-- Compiled by the National Agricultural Library of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, AGRICOLA (Agricultural Online Access) is the most comprehensive source of U.S. agricultural and life sciences information. AGRICOLA serves as the document locator and bibliographic control system for the National Agricultural Library (NAL) collection. It contains over 3.3 million bibliographic records of journal articles, monographs, theses, patents, software, audio-visual materials, and technical reports related to agriculture from 1979 to the present. Indexers regularly scan over 1,400 journals for input into the database. Since 1984, the database also has included some records produced by cooperating institutions for documents not held by the NAL. AGRICOLA provides comprehensive coverage of newly acquired worldwide publications in agriculture and related fields, covering the field of agriculture in the broadest sense. Records are catalogued using the controlled vocabulary of Library of Congress Subject Headings and, since 1985, of the CAB Thesaurus.

America: History and Life-- a comprehensive bibliography of articles on the history and culture of the United States and Canada from prehistory to the present. AHL offers abstracts and citations for articles appearing in over 2,000 journals published worldwide in history, related humanities, and the social sciences (including the Appalachian Journal). The database also includes citations to book reviews from approximately 140 major journals of American history and culture, and relevant dissertations from Dissertation Abstracts International.

JSTOR-- JSTOR offers a high-quality, interdisciplinary archive to support scholarship and teaching. It includes archives of over one thousand leading academic journals across the humanities, social sciences, and sciences, as well as select monographs and other materials valuable for academic work. The entire corpus is full-text searchable, offers search term highlighting, includes high-quality images, and is interlinked by millions of citations and references.

WorldCat-- WorldCat is a global library network built upon cooperatively-maintained databases of bibliographic and institutional metadata with 110 million bibliographic records that represent more than 1 billion individual items held by participating institutions.

Other Libraries

American Statistics Index. Washington, D.C.: Congressional Information Service, Inc. [Lib has bound: Abstracts: 1974-1998; Index: 1974-1998; Cumulative Index: 1980/84, 1985/88, 1989/92, 1993/96] Western Carolina University, WCU REF INDX SHELF

Environmental Abstracts Annual. New York: EIC Intelligence Inc. V. 10- , 1980- , Annually. East Tennessee State University, ETSU Sherrod 1st Fl. Reference Room, G F1 .E5533


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection

Agricultural History. Berkeley, CA: Published for the Agricultural History Society by the University of California Press. V. 1- , 1927- , Quarterly. Full text available online through the ASU catalog.

Appalachian Journal. Boone, N.C: Appalachian State University. V. 2- , Autumn 1974- , Quarterly; Autumn 1972 to Spring 1974 (v. 1), Semiannually. [Vols 7, 18, and 23 include a cumulative index. Complete table of contents avail at]. ASU App Coll F 216.2 A66

Journal of Appalachian Studies. Morgantown, WV: Regional Research Institute of West Virginia University for the Appalachian Studies Association. V.1- , 1995- , Semiannually. ASU App Coll F106 .J74

Journal of Rural Studies. Oxford: Elsevier. V. 1- , 1985- . Full text available online through the ASU catalog.

Other Libraries

Journal of Sustainable Agriculture. Binghamton, NY: The Haworth Press, Inc. V. 1- , 1990- , 8 issues per year.
[Lib has V. 6- , 1995- . Full text also available at] NC A&T State Univ. A&T GSM Serials S 494.5.S86 J68


National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture
Carolina Farm Stewardship Association
Appalachian Sustainable Development
Blue Ridge Women in Agriculture
Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group
National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service
Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project

Other Sources: 

Agriculture and the Environment. 1991. Washington, D.C.: US Dept. of Agriculture. ASU Govt A1 .10:991

Johnson, Anne, Director. 1988. Grassroots Small Farm. Whitesburg, KY: Appalshop. 29 min. ASU App Coll Video VC 33

Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education – makes grants to support sustainable agriculture. Project reports from their grantees are maintained in an online, searchable database [Projects in the Southern SARE region are most relevant]

Compiled by: 

Compiler: Joanna B. Weintraub, 29 October 1998

Updated by: 

Updated: Kelly J. Drey-Houck, 18 November 2008