Taking a bow September 30 is Texas Ranch Women: Three Centuries of Mettle and Moxie. This book has been at least 15 years in the making, from an idea suggested by good friend, poet and book publisher Ginnie Bivona, and evolving from tales of long ago family and neighbors, and from present day ranch women saying, “you need to include…talk to…learn about…etc,” pointing the way to good stories. These strong women fended off volleys from Mother Nature of droughts and blizzards, cattle pricing peaks and valleys, and those who would rob, raid and plunder. They hung on to land and cattle...and family. All the while, they reared children—theirs and others—and built communities with schools and churches.
Due September 30: Texas Ranch Women: Three Centuries of Mettle and Moxie. In this book I’ve gotten a peek into the lives of women across the centuries and around the state and its preceding roles as both a Spanish and Mexican province before becoming the Republic of Texas, an independent nation. In their stories I’ve written to show the women in their time and place—a couple almost mythical—the rest grounded in facts as hard as the land.
OCTOBER BOOKSIGNINGS FOR
TEXAS RANCH WOMEN: THREE CENTURIES OF METTLE AND MOXIE
- Oct. 4, Sat., 3 p.m., (Dallas) Lincoln Park Barnes & Noble, 7700 W. Northwest Highway.
- Oct. 18, Sat., 1 pm (Fort Worth-TCU) Barnes & Noble Corner of W. Berry St. & University Dr.
- Oct. 25, Sun., 2 p.m. (Austin) Texas Book Festival, The History Press booth.
“My son-in-law gave the book TEXAS DAMES to me for Mother’s Day. I just wanted to let you know how very much I have enjoyed reading and re-reading these stories! Thank you so very much for doing all this research and then writing this book.” (Sara Fulks)
"I loved Texas Dames! Reading it on a road trip across the Lone Star State was a perfect backdrop! My only complaint is that it ended too soon!"
— Melissa Swensen Martin
THANKS FOR YOUR RESPONSE TO “TEXAS DAMES: SASSY AND SAVVY WOMEN THROUGHOUT LONESTAR HISTORY.”
Here’s what’s happened as a result of your enthusiasm for these women’s stories:
- The publisher, The History Press of Charleston, is pleased with the response of readers to these stories of early Texas women, saying it’s nearing a second printing.
- The E-book has come out, also to good response.
- Both the print and Kindle books have been given the coveted 5-star rating at Amazon.
Texas Dames: Sassy and Savvy Women Throughout Lone Star History.The History Press of Charleston South Carolina https://www.historypress.net/. ISBN 978.1.60949.812.2) has published the collection of “Texas Dames” stories that ran in a couple of dozen community newspapers around the state. The book highlights the women whose lives, lived in uncommon times by today’s standards, nudged and sometimes yanked Texas and Texans into gentler, more enlightened ways. Without them—from the early Indian girl Angelina who greeted strangers and interpreted her Caddo language, French and Spanish for explorers and priests, to a tomboy from Port Arthur-Beaumont who set Olympic track records and then rocked the women’s golf world—Texas would not be the same. Stories come from these women as well as early pioneers, the “Old 300” of Stephen F. Austin renown, business women, doctors, educators, ministers and suffragettes. It’s a calico quilt of Texas history through the eyes and lives of women. The stories and a potpourri of pictures will show readers the grand state’s history and its high stepping women.
CHICKEN SOUP OF THE SOUL: Miracles Happen came out in February, this year, and includes the essay I wrote about a late night trip from Houston to Fort Worth and a “miracle” along the way. My story is called, “Night Bull.”
In 2012’s Chicken Soup of the Soul: The Magic of Mother’s and Daughters, my essay about my mother, our relationship and her last six months appeared. Titled “Burgers and Butterflies.”
A gentleman from the Sudan now living and working in Saudi Arabia wrote: “Your story might be the kiss from my father that God welcomed him in Heaven…the dawn of our loved ones has come no doubt.”
Whispering Spirit, an Historical Family Saga
By Carmen Goldthwaite
FROM CHAPTER ONE
The moonless night enveloped Marseilles. Out beyond the wall, the scent of fresh-plowed dirt filled the air. Stars twinkled and danced on the velvet curtain. A hush draped the landscape until the cathedral bells tolled, tolling not for the hour, but for emergency. City streets sprang to life. Smoke clogged the district. Brigades sloshed water at a blaze, but without intensity.
In the odd silence in her home, well away from the business district, the faint tolling of the bells woke Catherine Marie DeSpain. No one moved about. No snoring. She missed the morning sounds of family and the scent of olivewood smoke drifting up the stone and wood stairwell. She shrugged off her cocoon of hand-sewn quilts and stretched on tiptoes to peer out the small, wood-framed window of her bedroom, overlooking the road to the old port of Marseilles. A lantern from a passing carriage cast shadows that jumped and twitched like puppets on a string. The light flickered and then fell dark. Shod hooves of a team of horses clattered on the cobblestone street. A loud crack like a small pistol shot followed...