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Storytelling News FYI: Resolution Would Make Doc McConnell Tennessee's First Storytelling Laureate

Resolution would make 'Doc' McConnell Tennessee’s first 'Storytelling Laureate'
Published 03/26/2008 By Hank Hayes

'Doc' McConnell performs in this Times-News file photo.

Longtime Hawkins County storyteller “Doc” McConnell is on track to become Tennessee’s first-ever “Tennessee Storytelling Laureate.”

A resolution creating the office of Tennessee Storytelling Laureate and designating McConnell as its first appointee advanced in the House State Government Subcommittee Wednesday.

The resolution noted that McConnell, a Rogersville native, has made significant contributions to Tennessee’s celebrated storytelling heritage during a 30-year period.

During that time, McConnell has performed his “Old Medicine Show” and appeared at the 1982 World’s Fair, Country Music Hall of Fame, Minnesota State Fair, Tallahassee Museum, Milwaukee Radio Days, Tennessee Valley Fair, Jonesborough’s National Storytelling Festival and National Barbecue Festival.

He has also appeared on the “Today” show,” “Hee Haw” and on National Public Radio programs.

“In the service of his art, Doc McConnell utilizes his expertise and desire to mentor future storytellers, and he has provided innumerable concerts, lectures, workshops, seminars and classes focusing on the improvement of storytelling skills, the acquisition of a better understanding of people and their cultures through traditional storytelling,” the resolution states.

For more information go to and click on “Legislation.” The resolution’s main sponsor is state Rep. John Hood, D-Murfreesboro. The resolution’s number is HJR 960.

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Tags: Doc, Laureate, McConnell, Storyteller, Storytelling


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Comment by Janice Brooks-Headrick on March 28, 2008 at 10:45am
The first time I heard Doc was at an Elderhostel in Gatlinburg. I got a terrific picture of him in a rocking chair, looking over the mountains. He told the "Non-Run" story, and I remember watching the whole room being enthralled, and thinking, I want to do this! People listening to me, without interrupting !1 Yes!
Comment by Pam Holcomb on March 27, 2008 at 7:06pm
Great news! Doc was the very first professional storyteller that I ever hear - some 30+ years ago while I was in college. I've been a fan of his ever since then!
Comment by Janice Brooks-Headrick on March 27, 2008 at 2:13pm
Organic Storytellers? Cuz, my husband is also non-computer. But he once had green hair. Doc's wife, Guerry, is very computer literate, so maybe an invite to her would be welcome.. Jan
Comment by Dianne de Las Casas, Founder on March 27, 2008 at 1:38pm
Wow! Storytelling at its most organic - I can't imagine my life without a "puter!" LOL

Comment by Dianne de Las Casas, Founder on March 27, 2008 at 12:41pm
Glad I was able to share this piece of information. I always my eyes and ears out for pertinent storytelling news. I met Doc a couple of times. What a great guy. Congrats to him. Now we just have to get him to join the site! :)

Comment by Janice Brooks-Headrick on March 27, 2008 at 11:40am
Doc opened my eyes to the art of storytelling. He's been a brick, pillar and shelter. I'm writing to that politician. and I'm a Tennessee Voter. Jan
Comment by Don 'Buck P' Creacy on March 27, 2008 at 9:45am
Here Here and it is about time.... Hurray for Doc... he's my buddy! And a mighty fine storyteller!




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