Although the transition from midwife- to doctor-attended childbirth ended around 1920 in most parts of the United States, some groups, including ethnic minorities and rural dwellers, continued to rely on the midwife for delivery assistance well into the 1930s and 1940s. Interviews conducted with the members of one of these groups, the people of the southern Appalachian Mountains, yields information concerning the techniques and training of traditional Appalachian midwives, midwifery succession patterns, reasons for the lengthy persistence of this midwifery system, and, lastly, characteristics that may be compared and contrasted to the midwifery system used by rural southern blacks during the same time period (roughly 1920-1950).