In this book are bits and pieces of dreams, lives, experiences, and vistas, like squares cut from old cloth and assembled into a crazy quilt of writing styles and forms. The patchwork design mirrors both the complexity of the chroniclers and the stark lines and angles of the American frontier.
ùSusan Cummins Miller, from the introduction
In this anthology of thirty-four writers who published during the settlement years of the American frontier, Miller assembles nonfiction, fiction, poetry, and occasional writings from women of Anglo, Chinese, Hispanic, and Native American ethnicity. Variously addressing such themes as isolation, drudgery, friendship, mourning, and even mysticism, these writers offer up a different frontier, one that focuses on womenÆs experiences as much as menÆs. In brief biographical and historical introductions to each writer, Miller shares insights and context as engaging as the selections themselves.