8.0 linear ft. 184 videodiscs + approx. 2,500 photographs.
Physical Description Note: Each DVD contains information in the following formats: .BUP, .IFO, and .VOB
Processing Information: Collection arranged and described (with previous data from Steve Cox) by Chapel Cowden, 2012.
Collection is open for research. Patrons must read and sign the "Rules for Use" form available in the Special Collections in order to view the materials. Please contact the Special Collections of Lupton Library to use this collection.
This archive currently consists of 184 DVDs of 400+ hours documenting the contemporary serpent handlers of Southern Appalachia, with extensive footage of entire services and interviews with church members of the major Jesus Name serpent handling churches of Appalachia from 1975-2004. The archives consist of several groupings to aid interested scholars and researchers. They can be identified as follows: Sand Mountain, Alabama (26 DVDs); Del-Rio, Tennessee (8 DVDs); Jolo, West Virginia (24 DVDs); Kingston, Georgia (49 DVDs); Middlesboro, Kentucky (10 DVDs); Calhoun, Georgia (7 DVDs); Interviews with handlers, focusing upon the experience of handling and of near-death experiences from serpent bites (34 DVDs); Fatal bites, funeral, and wake (5 DVDs); Special interests DVDs, including TV clips and documentaries, arbor meetings and handling in private homes (12 DVDs); Isolated footage of additional churches (9 DVDs). In addition, there are approximately 2,500 photographs documenting the same church services.
Hood-Williamson Archives on the Serpent Handlers of Southern Appalachia, MS 074, Special Collections, UTC Library, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
The copyright interests in the Hood-Williamson Archives on the Serpent Handlers of Appalachia have not been transferred to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. All DVD's are copyright Ralph W. Hood, Jr. and W. Paul Williamson and cannot be copied without written permission. For further information, see the section on copyright and publishing on the web site for the Special Collections, under "Policies".
Dr. Ralph Hood has been a professor in the Psychology department at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga since 1970. His teaching interests include the psychology of religion and philosophical psychology. During his tenure at UTC, he has served on many nationally recognized committees in the fields of psychology and religion. He has also held several positions editing journals, including the Journal for the Theory of Social Behavior, Review of Religious Research, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, and Archive for the Psychology of Religion. Dr. Hood has published extensively on varied topics related to his research interests and has given over 300 convention papers as well as numerous invited addresses and plenary presentations. Dr. W. Paul Williamson has been a professor in the Psychology department at Henderson State University since 2000. He has served as the newsletter editor for American Psychological Association Division 36: Psychology of Religion, a member of the awards committee for APA, Division 36: Psychology of Religion, and as a member of the editorial board for Archive for the Psychology of Religion. Dr. Williamson has published journal articles and books on varied topics related to his research interests.