February 2, 2012

Letters of a Woman Homesteader

Letters of a Woman Homesteader is one of my recent finds on Google Books.  I have to say, I absolutely adore Elinore Pruitt Stewart, the author of these letters, and I can't wait to read the other one I found, Letters on an Elk Hunt.

Elinore was a young woman, with a small child when her husband is killed.  She worked several menial jobs to care for herself and her daughter while living in Denver.  She managed to get a position as a live in housekeeper, with a Mr. Clyde Stewart, who was taking up a homestead in Wyoming at the turn of the century.  I won't give away any of the book, but will say that she has a no nonsense way of saying things, and I love her personality, that shines through in these letters.  I wish I could have known her myself, she would have been a true friend.

She also speaks to what my heart is feeling, and firmly believes:

" I am very enthusiastic about women homesteading. It really requires less strength and labor to raise plenty to satisfy a large family than it does to go out to wash, with the added satisfaction of knowing that their job will not be lost to them if they care to keep it.  Even if improving the place does go slowly, it is that much done to stay done. Whatever is raised is the homesteader's own and there is no house rent to pay." 

I wish there was still such a thing as true homesteading....where you could put in a claim on 100 acres or so of land, and as long as you improved it within a set amount of years, it was yours. 

I highly recommend this book for reading....you get a taste of how they did things back then, and also the true characters are wonderful to get to know.

Have a great day! 

10 comments:

  1. that would be nice , a fiction writer I used to read has one book out ,it would be similar to living a homestead life-author LyVeral Spencer wrote "Years" a great and full filling book

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  2. My daughter (Chicken Mama) read an excerpt from Stewart's book to us as her contribution at our last Family Reading Night. Her writing appealed to our daughter as I can understand it would to you . . . both of you strong, single women homesteaders!

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  3. Sounds like a good read.....wonder if it's available at paperbackswap? Going to have to check it out, thanks for the recommendation!

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  4. I'm going to look into this book! I've been wanting to find something like this. Thanks!

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  5. I really enjoyed it Mama Pea:) Not just that she started out as a single woman (hint...she didn't stay that way)...but just her all around personality, reminds me of my mom :) The lady who isn't afraid to break the rules (did things that weren't expected of women), and speaks her mind.

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  6. Oh you will like it Bobbi! And free is always a great price:)

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  7. Carolyn I do believe if you check on Amazon, they have a newer version of it that was put together, you might be able to get a 2nd hand copy there. I read it on my phone mostly (I have a Google Books app), so I was able to get it for free. But you can also go to the link I posted above and download it in pdf to read on your computer for free.

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  8. Judy, I will have to look for that book. This is a great read, and not all flowery, like some women.

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  9. Here are two websites y'all can go to: http://www.elinorestewart.com and http://listentogenius.com/author.php/320 for an Elinore Pruitt Stewart fix. :) And, 'Years' by Lavyrle Spencer is one of my read-time-and-time-again, especially when I need to feel grounded books!

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