the foxfire magazine began in 1966, written and published as a quarterly magazine by students at rabun gap-nacoochee school, a private school in georgia. an example of experimental education, the magazine had articles based on the students' interviews with local people about aspects and practices in appalachian culture. they captured oral history, craft traditions, and other aspects of the culture. when the articles were collected in book form in 1972, it became a bestseller and gained attention for the foxfire project.
the magazine was named for foxfire, a term for naturally occurring bioluminescence in fungi in the forests of north georgia. additional books were published, and with profits from magazine and book sales, the students created a not-for-profit educational and literary organization and a museum. nationally, the foxfire model has inspired numerous school systems to develop their own experimental education programs.