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Reformers to RadicalsThe Appalachian Volunteers and the War on Poverty$
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Thomas Kiffmeyer

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780813125091

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813125091.001.0001

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A Splendid Little War

A Splendid Little War

(p.69) 3 A Splendid Little War
Reformers to Radicals


University Press of Kentucky

Roslea Johnson was a child of what historian Chad Berry referred to as the “northern exiles”, or Appalachians, who had to relocate to Northern industrial enters to look for employment opportunities during World War II. Her family's financial situation, when Johnson's father lost his job, led her to Berea College where she took classes under Perley Ayer—leader of the CSM. After which, Johnson began to attend CSM conferences as she learned about “mountain culture.” Johnson served as the student representative at the first AV meeting after Ayer and President Kennedy discussed the possibility for establishing a “Domestic Peace Corps.” One of the first projects of the new organization involved repairing schools in Kentucky which had only one or two rooms. Another goal of the organization was to recruit soldiers for the fundamental mission in advocating self-help in improving life conditions.

Keywords:   Roslea Johnson, CSM, Perley Ayer, Berea College, Domestic Peace Corps, schools, life conditions, self-help

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