West Virginia's Appalachian Music and Literature

Discussion Questions: John Henry and Tony Beaver


After you have studied both John Henry and Tony Beaver, discuss the questions below with your teacher and classmates.

  1. What words and phrases in the text of the stories and song tell you that John Henry and Tony Beaver are from West Virginia?

  2. Give examples of EXAGGERATION in the stories of John Henry and Tony Beaver.

  3. In what ways are the folk heroes John Henry and Tony Beaver alike?

  4. In what ways are the folk heroes John Henry and Tony Beaver different?

(HELPFUL HINTS: Think about . . . Is either John Henry or Tony Beaver based on fact? What makes them HEROES?)

Go to "John
Henry" Menu
Return to "Traditional
Music & Literature" Menu
Go to "Tony
Beaver" menu

West Virginia's Appalachian Music and Literature is a self-contained teaching unit by Avis Caynor and Reneé Wyatt (1997), reprinted with permission in 2003 in the larger web site AppLit.

See also Complete list of AppLit pages on folklore
Tall Tales and Jack Tales: Literature and Writing Activities

site index home