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Oral Histories

The SFA oral history program documents life stories from the American South. Collecting these stories, we honor the people whose labor defines the region.

ORAL HISTORY

Anthony Bledsoe


Anthony Bledsoe cuts his own trees for fuel. He chooses hickory trees from the forests that surround this tiny community of Woodstock, Tennessee. Fresh green hickory imparts a flavor, he says, that is unbeatable; conventional dried, aged, and soaked hickory chips just go up in smoke.

Located between Millington and Memphis, the Woodstock Store N’ Deli actually straddles town and city; the customer orders in Millington or the front half of the Store, while the barbecue is smoked and the sandwich prepared in Memphis.

Mr. Bledsoe has been working barbecue pits for over four decades, since he was thirteen. He says he’s been perfecting his hot sauce for just as long. The sauce can be had on a Sleeper, a pound of chopped barbecue between a bun.

Date of interview:
2008-07-18 00:00

Interviewer:
Rien T. Fertel

Photographer:
Rien T. Fertel

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