The Devil's Tea Tables: West Virginia Ghost Stories and Other Tales

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9781891852428: The Devil's Tea Tables: West Virginia Ghost Stories and Other Tales

In the spirit of Chaucer's famed Canterbury Tales, West Virginia writer Mack Samples has produced an entertaining gem with his latest book, The Devil's Tea Tables. The author has created a busload of gregarious travelers who share their strange and ghostly tales as they traverse the West Virginia hills. The stories tell about all kinds of strange dealings, some with horse traders, disturbed graves, kind hobos, vanishing moonshine, and fiddle-playing preachers. Many of the stories the author heard growing up along the Elk River. Sit back and read some mysterious tales about bygone days in the hills of West Virginia. Picture a busload of gregarious wayfarers rambling through the richest tall-tale country in America, and you will have a good idea of what Mack Samples accomplishes in his latest book. Each of the pilgrims in Devil's Tea Tables leaves us a chilly yarn, all adding up to a fine regional collection of ghost lore and the supernatural. Samples is a true son of the hills who speaks with the authority of a native. We are lucky to have him as our guide through this spooky terrain. Ken Sullivan West Virginia Humanities Council Mack Samples is a true mountain storyteller. In telling these timeless tales, he not only honors the stories but those who have passed them down through the generations. Mack knows the tellers are as important as the stories themselves. You'll not find a better bunch of stories anywhere in America. Their universal themes never get outdated and their meanings are as fresh today as they were in the dim past when they were hatched from a real incident or the fertile mind of an ancient bard. In putting these stories on paper, Mack is preserving them and paying homage to those who have kept them in their memories and in their hearts. In reading them may you do the same. - Dave Peyton, columnist, The Charleston (WV) Daily Mail

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About the Author:

Mack Samples was born and raised in Corton, West Virginia, a rural community near the Kanawha/Clay County lines. After a four-year stint in the United States Navy he entered Glenville State College and graduated with an A.B. Degree. He taught three years in West Virginia public schools, and then got a Master s Degree in History and Political Science from Ohio University. Mack worked for the University of South Carolina for three years as a professor and administrator. He then returned to Glenville State College and served as Registrar and Director of Admissions for 21 years. The final five years of his professional life was spent as a West Virginia University Extension Agent in Clay County. Since his retirement in 1999 Mack has enjoyed some success as a writer and currently has seven books on the market, some fiction and some non-fiction. Mack has always been involved in traditional music. His band, The Samples Brothers, has been active since 1978 and still performs on the festival circuit and other venues. He is a well known as a traditional square dance caller. He and his wife, Thelma, are also ballroom dancers. They live on a 55-acre spread in Duck, WV. During the 2003 Vandalia Festival in Charleston, West Virginia, Mack was presented with the Vandalia Award, the state s highest award for the preservation of traditional life in the Mountain State. Mack and Thelma are the parents to two children, Tracy and Grayson, and have two grandchildren, Emma Grace and Amelia Julianne Samples.

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Mack Samples
Published by Quarrier Press (2005)
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