Brooks Blevins to visit Flotsam Farm and discuss “How to Talk Ozark” next week

Brooks Blevins will visit Flotsam Farm, located on Highway 181 near Hodgson Mill, for a discussion on “How to Talk Ozark,” at the farm’s weekly Sycamore Salon next Thursday, March 21. Everyone is welcome.

Flotsam Farm’s Sycamore Salon will host author, historian and Missouri State University professor Brooks Blevins, who will present “How to Talk Ozark in 7 Simple Steps,” next Thursday, March 21, at the farm off Highway 181 near Hodgson Mill. It is a free event, although donations can be made to Flotsam Farm by those who wish to support its cause.

From stobbed tars to rosnears in a poke, "How to Talk Ozark" ranges across centuries and continents to trace the origins of the unique speech of many people in the Ozarks.

Brooks Blevins is the Noel Boyd Professor of Ozarks Studies at Missouri State University in Springfield. He is a native of the Ozarks, tracing his roots deep into the antebellum era in both Arkansas and Missouri. He has written nine books and edited three more. His most recent books are the “History of the Ozarks” trilogy, tracing the story of the region from prehistoric times to the present day.

This lighthearted presentation explores early ethnic and cultural influences on the Ozarks through the lens of dialect and accent. It dismisses the old notion of Elizabethan dialect in the Ozarks and instead looks at words, phrases and speech patterns that were once common in vernacular Ozark (and usually Appalachian) language, tracing their origins to European or colonial American roots. The presentation invites frequent audience participation and includes a built-in “Talking Ozark” quiz. Natives or longtime residents of the Ozarks will enjoy revisiting styles and words that have probably gone unused for decades, and others will gain an appreciation for cultural diffusion and regional distinctiveness in Missouri—as well as the forces that constantly chip away at that distinctiveness.

The evening will start with a potluck dinner at 5 p.m., followed by the program at 6. This presentation is made possible by support from The Ozarks Resource Center.

The Sycamore Salon is held at the Flotsam Farm community building, located at 13962 Highway 181 in Sycamore (near Hodgson Mill). Guests should park along the driveway or in the hay field and proceed toward the back of the property. Those with mobility issues or needing a more accessible entry, may drive down to the community building. Other guests may also unload there before parking in the field or driveway. 

For more information, email, call 417-261-1104, visit or the Flotsam Farm Facebook page. 

Ozark County Times

504 Third Steet
PO Box 188
Gainesville, MO 65655

Phone: (417) 679-4641
Fax: (417) 679-3423