Flavor country: Not here in Albemarle

When we went in search of any local tobacco farmers, we hit a dead end very quickly. "To my knowledge," says local agricultural expert Emmett Boaz, "tobacco has not been grown commercially in Albemarle County in my lifetime, and that's fifty-odd years."

How the mighty weed has fallen. During Albemarle's colonial days, thanks to strong demand from the mother country, tobacco was the #1 crop according to Albemarle: Jefferson's County by John Hammond Moore.

However, tobacco ravaged Piedmont soils, and tobacco had been eclipsed by wheat by the end of the American Revolution, Moore notes.

Though there are rumors of some local amateur tobacco farmers, tobacco remains primarily a staple of Southside Virginia, particularly along the border with North Carolina.