Since the 1930s, a lot of research has been done to figure out where the dialect came from. One theory is that the dialect is a remnant of Elizabethan (or Shakespearean) English that had been preserved by the region's isolation. Another theory suggests that the dialect developed out of the Scots-Irish and Anglo-Scottish border dialects brought to the region by some of its earliest British Isles settlers, who were from the border of Scotland and England.
Recent research suggests that Appalachian English developed as a uniquely American dialect as early settlers adapted English to their unfamiliar frontier environment. This is supported by many similarities between the Appalachian dialect and Colonial American English.
- Walt Wolfram and Donna Christian, Appalachian Speech (Arlington, Virginia: Center for Applied Linguistics, 1976), 1.
- Michael Montgomery, "How Scotch-Irish is Your English?" The Journal of East Tennessee History vol. 67 (1995), 17-18.
- Cooper, Horton. "History of Avery County", Biltmore Press, (1964),
- David Hackett Fischer, Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989), 653-654.
- Montgomery, 1002-1004.