KINGSPORT, Tenn. -- Janette Carter, the last surviving child of country music's founding Carter family, who in recent years preserved her parents' old-time style with weekly performances, died Sunday at Holston Valley Medical Center. She was 82.
Ms. Carter had battled Parkinson's disease and other illnesses.
Ms. Carter was the daughter of A.P. and Sara Carter. Her parents and her father's sister-in-law Maybelle Carter formed a singing trio discovered in 1927 when talent scout Ralph Peer came through the Tennessee-Virginia border town of Bristol to record mountain music.
When her brother Joe died last March, Janette Carter became the last surviving child of the original group's members. (The best known of her generation to present-day listeners was country star June Carter Cash, a daughter of Maybelle and wife of Johnny Cash. Carter Cash died in May 2003 at age 73. Her husband died later that year.)
Following the death of her father in 1960, Janette Carter dedicated her life to preserving not only the Carter family music, but the music of Appalachia.
One result of that effort was establishment of the Carter Family Fold, in Hiltons, Va., an auditorium built from railroad ties and school bus seats.
''It's good for younger people to know this kind of music," Janette Carter said in a 2002 Associated Press story. ''There was a time when music told a story; it wasn't just some beat."
At the time of the interview, she was still giving concerts every Saturday at the Carter Family Fold. She played autoharp.
''It's really remarkable how well Janette carried on her family's legacy by helping create the Carter Fold and what that has grown into from such humble beginnings," said Bill Hartley, executive director of the Birthplace of Country Music Alliance in Bristol.
A.P., Maybelle, and Sara Carter recorded ''Bury Me Under the Weeping Willow," ''Little Log Cabin By the Sea," and ''Poor Orphan Child" with a sound and harmony that was unheard of at the time and immensely influential on country music.