Women of the Gold Rush: "The New Penelope" and Other Stories

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Heyday Books, 1998 - Fiction - 167 pages
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The reintroduction of a forgotten classic, essential for drawing a complete picture of the West and its true pioneers

Fiction of the western frontier has long been seen as a man's realm, dominated by such names as Bret Harte, Zane Gray, and Mark Twain. Yet women authors were also writing popular and eloquent prose, providing an alternate -- and illuminating -- view of life in gold rush California.

Collected in "Women of the Gold Rush" are the stories of Frances Fuller Victor, a popular and highly praised writer in her day. With exceptional insight, Victor depicts the lives and experiences of pioneer women who -- sweeping stereotypes aside -- are strong, intelligent, often angry, and always capable. Women who followed their husbands' whims to the West Coast, traveling by covered wagon or ship, women who became young widows on the trail or who found the isolation of the remote mining cabin unendurable, women who learned to survive in a new and changing society -- all are painted in images as fresh and relevant today as they were then.

"Women of the Gold Rush" is the outstanding continuation in our series of reprints of worthy and talented women writers of the west, which includes No Rooms of Their Own: Women Writers of Early California, 1849-1869 and The Shirley Letters: From the California Mines, 1850-1952.

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The New Penelope
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About the author (1998)

Victor was an important and well-known member of early California's literary scene.

Egli is currently chair of the English department at Santa Rosa Junior College.

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