Letters from the Dust Bowl

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University of Oklahoma Press, 2003 - Social Science - 278 pages
10 Reviews

In May 1936 Secretary of Agriculture Henry A. Wallace wrote to Caroline Henderson to praise her contributions to American "understanding of some of our farm problems." His comments reflected the national attention aroused by Henderson’s articles, which had been published in Atlantic Monthly since 1931. Even today, Henderson’s articles are frequently cited for her vivid descriptions of the dust storms that ravaged the Plains.

Caroline Henderson was a Mount Holyoke graduate who moved to Oklahoma’s panhandle to homestead and teach in 1907. This collection of Henderson’s letters and articles published from 1908 to1966 presents an intimate portrait of a woman’s life in the Great Plains. Her writing mirrors her love of the land and the literature that sustained her as she struggled for survival.

Alvin O. Turner has collected and edited Henderson’s published materials together with her private correspondence. Accompanying biographical sketch, chapter introductions, and annotations provide details on Henderson’s life and context for her frequent literary allusions and comments on contemporary issues.


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Review: Letters from the Dust Bowl

User Review  - William Trently - Goodreads

"Is it in vain that the flowers bloom by the edge of alpine glaciers or on the Siberian meadows, where no one sees their color or enjoys their fragrance?" Beautiful book! Read full review

Review: Letters from the Dust Bowl

User Review  - Carlton King - Goodreads

Really excellent. The best part of this book was the excerpt from Henderson's published story, "When the Well Ran Dry." (Approximate title.) This isn't a novel, but instead a collection of letters, so you don't have to read it from start to finish. Read full review


Beginnings 19081914
Hopeful Years 19141928
Clouded Horizons 19291934
Dust to Eat 19351937
Slow and Partial Recovery 19381951
When Hope Has Gone 19521966

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About the author (2003)

Caroline Henderson (1877-1965) wrote numerous articles for the "Atlantic Monthly".

Alvin O. Turner, Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma, is coauthor of Oklahoma at the Crossroads and author of Index to Historic Record in Canadian County, Oklahoma.

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