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Take on the South

What Is the Most Important Southern Sport, NASCAR or Football?

Watch Nascar or Football? on PBS. See more from wrlk.

Dr. Walter Edgar, Dr. Daniel Pierce, Author and History Department Chair, University of North Carolina, Asheville, and Dr. Harvey “Hardy” Jackson III, Author and Eminent Scholar in History, Jacksonville State University, Jacksonville, AL will debate “What is the most important Southern sport, NASCAR or football?” Be sure to vote in our online poll for your favorite sport.

Download the Lesson Plan (doc)



Daniel S. (Dan) Pierce is the author of the first truly comprehensive history of early NASCAR, Real NASCAR: White Lightning, Red Clay, and Big Bill France (UNC Press, 2010) and writes a monthly column for NASCAR Illustrated magazine on the history of the sport. He is Professor of History, Chair of the department, and resident professional cracker at the University of North Carolina-Asheville. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Tennessee where he worked with distinguished southern historian James C. Cobb. He is also the author of the The Great Smokies: From Natural Habitat to National Park (UT Press, 2000) and has had his work published in The New York Times, Southern Cultures, Smokies Life magazine, and numerous encyclopedias including the New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture.


Harvey H. (Hardy) Jackson

Harvey H. (Hardy) Jackson, III grew up in Grove Hill, Alabama where he attended local public schools. He is a graduate of Marion Military Institute (1963), Birmingham Southern College (B.A. 1965), the University of Alabama (M.A. 1966) and the University of Georgia (Ph.D., 1973).

He has taught at colleges and universities in Florida and Georgia, and is currently Jacksonville State University Professor and Eminent Scholar in History.

Jackson is the author, co-author, or co-editor of eleven books on various aspects of Southern History, including Rivers of History: Life on the Coosa, Tallapoosa, Cahaba and Alabama, which was published in 1995 and Putting “Loafing Streams” to Work: The Building of Lay, Mitchell, Martin, and Jordan Dams, 1910-1929, which was published in 1997. His most recent book, Inside Alabama: A Personal History of My State (2004) won the Alabama Historical Association C. J. Coley award. He has also written numerous articles and reviews for various popular and scholarly journals.

Jackson serves on the Editorial Board of the Anniston Star and writes for the paper. His columns and commentary have won awards from the Alabama Press Association.

His current project is serving as editor of Recreation, the 17th volume of the New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture which will be published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2010. He is also working on a history of the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico since World War II, titled “The Rise and Decline of the ‘Redneck Riviera,’” which will be published by the University of Georgia Press.

Hardy Jackson lives in Jacksonville, Alabama, with his wife, Suzanne, their son Will and daughter Anna. His daughter, Kelly, teaches in the Metro-Atlanta area.



Cast your vote. Which do you think is the most popular southern sport?

We will reveal the final results November 17.


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