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The Tale of Slim Pickens

Henry Avent Pickens was born in 1883, the youngest of 9 boys on a small rural farm in the Carolina low grounds.

Henry was tall and skinny and thusly so…called Slim…having the last name Pickens…well, you get the picture.

Slim’s younger years were spent splittin’ wood for his older brothers’ shine business.  Most of the Pickens boys had a venture of their own in the works….mostly legal…but Slim figured it best to make his mama proud and do something respectable.

In the South you had to grow it, kill it and cook it if anything was to make it to the table and Slim seemed to have a knack for it all.  Slim always said, Southern cookin’ is a lesson in patience – a watched pot never boils and if you’re lookin’ it ain’t cookin’.

Slim recipes were handed down from generations before him.  He made a few adjustments and dialed up the heat with a dash of his brother’s finest for his sauce.

Slim became a local legend. He was bottling more sauce than his brother Bilbo bottled shine. He married Eunice Kennedy (not the one you think) and they had seven sons and seven daughters.

Slim never gave up his recipes.  He kept them in an old shine bottle buried under an old hickory tree.  One day, long after Slim was dead and buried, lightning struck that old tree and revealed Slim’s recipes.  Lucky for us…we bought that old house with the old hickory tree and the bottle of shine with Slim’s recipes.

I guess you can catch lightning in a bottle and we thank Slim Pickens for leaving it for us to find.


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