For more than fifty years Appalachia has been the focus of media portrayals of dire poverty. Recently, however, new technology andindustry have encroached on the old ways and eroded traditional culture.Appalachia is Shelby Lee Adams's homeland. His much-praised photographic work of isolated, hard-lived lives has shown Appalachians to be valiant, admirable individuals rather than mere stereotypes of poverty in America. He intends his images in Appalachian Legacy to express his intimate feelings for the region. The eighty photographs collected in this exceptional book, taken over the course of a quarter-century, are Adams's study of people who give of themselves honestly and openly before the camera.Appalachian Legacy follows Adams's acclaimed Appalachian Portraits (1993). His new book begins with an account of growing up on his grandparents' farm in eastern Kentucky. After leaving, he kept memories of Appalachia alive within him. His annual visits gave him an understanding of his heritage and helped him define his place in the world as an Appalachian, a photographer, an artist, and a human being. Thus he perceives his life's work to be a revelation of both the relationship between the photographer and his subjects and the subjects' connections to each other and their environment.Adams focuses on nine families he has photographed over twenty-four years. The accompanying text is the collected stories of each family and of his long-term relationship with them. A second section is a series of photographs on the human cycle of generations passing.This book not only reflects the identity of the photographer in his work and captures the indelible heritage of old Appalachia but alsosuggests the new Appalachia absorbed in American culture mainstream of television, trailer parks, and shopping malls.