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© Janus Adams LLC 2023
A rarely seen portrait of Appalachia―Black Appalachia.  William H. Turner, coal miner's son, is author of the memoir, THE HARLAN RENAISSANCE: Stories of Black Life in Appalachian Coal Towns.  From African American family life and culture in the boom years of Harlan County, Kentucky’s coal-mining company towns, to the bust era of the “Rust Belt,” Bill Turner comes bearing stories of family, friends, and a centuries-old history of Black “Middle-America." He takes us to the heart of the scene as only an expert storyteller, dedicated scholar, and native son can.  Making good on the charge his friend and mentor, Alex Haley, author of Roots, gave him, ​he has written a book in “a voice my Mama would read.” With that voice and witness, the lives and legacies of Black coal miners take on a visibility, dignity, respect and presence long overdue.

​When W. Kamau Bell focused CNN's lens on Appalachia for a special episode of his “United Shades of America” show, who did he turn to for authenticity and context to the African American Appalachian experience? Dr. William H. Turner, PhD.  A sociologist and professor, Bill Turner has been honored for his lifetime of service by the Appalachian Studies Association and inducted into the Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame.   

William H. Turner, PhD

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WILLIAM H. TURNER

​author, THE HARLAN RENAISSANCE:

Stories of Black Life in Appalachian Coal Towns