(The image is a painting by John William Waterhouse "The Crystal Ball.")
Appalachian witches (aka granny women) practiced divination or scrying by reading tea leaves, cards, and clouds. They might also make use of bowls of dirt or water.
They wouldn't call it scrying, however, according to my friend Byron, a hereditary Appalachian witch (as well as a Wiccan.) They might say 'taking a look' or 'getting a knowing.'
There's an Appalachian witch in Under the Skin --my work in progress. Her name is Amarantha and she lives in Hot Springs, NC, back in 1887. She has a special little pool in the woods that she uses for her 'seeing' but she can also use whatever's handy. Here it's a bowl of sweet oil.
I went back and set myself at the little table with my elbows on either side of the bowl and my face resting in my hands where I could peer into the sweet oil.
Used to be, it took a long time for the pictures to come. I would wait and the least little thing would pull my mind away -- a fly buzzing, a worrisome thought -- but now it seems as if I can go to that place between the worlds in no more than a few heartbeats' time.
I let my eyes go foggy, looking without trying to see, as you might say. At first, there was just the rainbow shimmer on the surface of the oil then, as my breath hit it, lines and patterns grew, one inside another, and the pictures begun to come.