Family Trees is the story of a nearly a century of peach farming in Upstate South Carolina. Read More
In Mike Corbin’s Family Trees, bulldozers are turning the big peach orchard along Interstate 85 into a golf and country club. Peaches from California are finding their way to the produce counters of the local grocery stores. Abandoned fruit-packing sheds dot the landscape like tombstones from a bygone era. The peach industry in the Southeast is in rapid retreat.
Yet peach farmer Kline Cash, 51, and his family are determined that their 450-acre orchard will survive. Year after year, they tend their trees with a combination of old-time methods and modern ingenuity. Nothing has beaten them yet─not hail, not real estate speculators, not West Coast competition, not sub-freezing temperatures.
Family Trees: The Peach Culture of The Piedmont, the fifth title from the Hub City Writers Project, is the courageous story of the Cash family, now in its sixth generation on the land. It is photographer Mike Corbin’s tender tribute to a fading livelihood and lifestyle. With a stirring narrative and striking photographs, he takes readers through a year in the life of Cash Farms, one of the last remaining peach-packers in the South Carolina Piedmont.
In doing so, he presents a loving homage to tradition, continuity, and the resolve of the family farmer. Family Trees is an unforgettable portrait of what man and the land can give to each other.
The book includes 70 of Corbin’s photographs, taken during a three-year period on the peach farms of the South Carolina Piedmont. These photographs have been on display at the Museum of the New South in Charlotte, the Senate Office Building in Washington, D.C., and the Southern Living Wren House in Clemson.