Redd's Sister-in-Law

Helen Puffenberger-Stewart 

Helen played accordion in the band with June Carter (Cash), Chet Atkins, Mother Maybelle Carter & Anita Carter for a while. She met her future husband, Bill Stewart (Redd's youngest brother) at Ma Upchurch's Boarding House! Helen Stewart performed with the Carters for 2 years in place of Helen Carter, as she left to have a baby.

Click Link For More Information About Ma Upchurch's Boarding House

Pictured (L-R) June Carter-Cash, Helen Puffenberger-Stewart, Chet Atkins, Mother Maybelle Carter, Anita Carter.


After a long ride in Hank's 38 Packard, Hank Williams, Anita Carter & Helen Puffenberger-Stewart (Redd's sister-in-law) arrive in Kansas City to perform.

Helen Stewart is shown here, lower right, in 1950 on a Grand Ole Opry tour with Hank Williams, Sr., Anita Carter, Whip Wilson and Moon Mulican.


(L-R) Helen Stewart, Kent Stewart (Redd's newphew, standing), Billy Stewart (Redd's brother) on fiddle, John Irwin Rice (on mandolin), and Redd Stewart (seated in front). This photo was taken in the 1990s.

*John Rice Irwin (born December 11, 1930) is an American cultural historian, and founder of the Museum of Appalachia in Norris, Tennessee.


Helen Stewart often shared about her friendships gained while performing with the “Carter Family ”. Here is a keepsake from “Chester”

Chet wrote on March 7, 1951 on his photo, “Bea (Helen), it’s sure been a pleasure working with you. I sincerely hope you have lots of luck and the best of everything the world has to offer.” “Love and Kisses” Chester


Back row from left to right,
Curly Collins,Benny Kissinger,Slim Idaho, Looney Luke,, Roly Poly Reed (The Tobacco Tags}
Middle row,
Helen Carter, Maybelle Carter, Anita Carter, June Carter , (The Carter Sisters and Mother Maybelle) Sam Workman (behind June) Mary Workman (Sunshine Sue) , John Workman, Bonnie Puffenbarger, Helen (Bea) Puffenbarger (Redd's sister-in-law), Buster Puffenbarger,
Front Row , Red Murphy, Little Robert Van Winkle, Joe Maphis, (dressed as "Crazy Joe") — at Old Dominion Barn Dance 1947.


L-R: Chet Atkins, Mother Maybelle Carter, June Carter-Cash, Anita Carter & Helen Puffenberger-Stewart on the right


Helen Puffenberger-Stewart on accordion with husband, Billy on the right playing the fiddle.


Helen & Billy Stewart performing at The Carter Family Fold.  The Carter Family Fold is a musical performance and concert venue located near Hiltons, Virginia. It is dedicated to the preservation and performance of old time country and bluegrass music.


L-R: Helen Carter, Helen Puffenberger- Stewart, June Carter-Cash, & Anita Carter

The Barn Dance was broadcast live over WRVA Radio in Richmond, VA, a 50,000 watt clear channel station that reached 38 states and Canada. The show put Richmond on the map as a country music mecca and grew to be nationally renowned.  At one time, the Old Dominion Barn Dance was the 3rd largest stage show in the nation following The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville Tennessee and The Wheeling Jamboree in Wheeling West Virginia.
Sunshine Sue was the M.C. and many well-known artists got their start there, including Chet Atkins, Joe Maphis, the Carter Sisters and Mother Maybelle and many others.