Who were the old conjurors and witches of Appalachia? What were their practices and beliefs? How can you learn the ways of conjuring for yourself? Appalachian folk magic and conjure are little known today, but forty or fifty years ago just about every person you might ask in Appalachia either knew something about it themselves or knew someone who did it. These practices and “superstitions” are at the core of Appalachian culture.
In Doctoring the Devil, Jake Richards speaks to those questions and more, offering the various ways of rooting out the “devil”—any unfriendly spirit bringing bad luck, poor health, and calamities of all sorts.
Like the blue smoky mists that glide up the Appalachians, Jake leads his readers up the hillsides too, introducing us to folks along the way—hunters, farmers, blacksmiths, faith healers, preachers, and root-diggers. We’ll also meet the local spirits and learn root ways. Further up the hill, we delve into Jake’s notebooks—a personal collection of tried-and-true Appalachian recipes and roots for conjuring love, money, justice, and success.
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About the Author
About the Author:
Jake Richards holds his Appalachian heritage close in his blood and bones. His family has tilled the soil in Virginia, Tennessee, and North Carolina for a good 500 years. He spent most of his childhood at his great-grandmother’s house on the side of Mount Mitchell in North Carolina. Jake has practiced Appalachian folk magic for almost a decade and teaches classes on the subject in Jonesborough, Tennessee, where he owns Little Chicago Conjure, a supplier of Appalachian folk magic supplies and ingredients.
Table of Contents
1 Witchcraft and Conjure in Appalachia 5
2 Catching Spirits 25
3 Red Roots 41
4 Corn and Quarters 55
5 Praying at the River 81
6 Salt under the Rocks 103
7 A Dime, a Dollar 121
8 Ain't No Badge That Shines Brighter 133
9 Mockingbird, Mockingbird 145
10 Little Rabbit Skin 159
11 There's a Balm in Gilead 169
12 "I've Been Witched!" 187
13 Run, Devil, Run 203
Appendix A Zodiac Signs and Their Corresponding Body Parts 223
Appendix B List of Herbs/Curios and Their Uses 225