Monday, February 5, 2007

It's cold, but it's not snowing

An appropriate read for weather like this. I finished this book last night, when the thermometer read -10. My house was warm and snug, and my family was all safe and accounted for. Reading the true account of the "children's blizzard" of 1888 was fascinating and chilling. It is one of those books that stays with you, sneaking into your thoughts for days afterward. This story got me thinking about my grandparent's parents and the difficult times they lived in. Everything was a struggle for these immigrants, just day to day living took an incredible amount of energy and determination! Death was lurking at all times, illness, starvation, accidents, childbirth. The life that these people we fleeing from in Europe must have been terrible, to take these kinds of risks in the New World.
This blizzard that took so many lives happened just a few years before my grandmother was born in the 1890's! So much has changed, we are so lucky to have what we have. I am counting my blessings today, and thanking those that came before me. Thanks Patrick and Anna and Stewart and Edward and Mary and Micheal and Ellen and all the rest of you.
Here is a brief synopsis of the book.
That 1888 January day on the northern plains was bright and warm–the first mild weather in several weeks–leading many children to attend school without coats, boots, hats, or mittens. A number of students were caught in the sudden storm that hit later that day. Laskin details this event–the worst blizzard anyone in those parts ever encountered. It not only took the lives of hundreds of settlers, but also formed a significant crack in the westward movement and helped to cause a movement out. The author introduces five pioneer families, beginning with why they left the old country. The personalization of these settlers breathes life into this history and holds readers spellbound.
Want to read it? Just ask me , you can have my copy.


Anonymous said...

IS it your book? Save it for my next read!! MB

Anonymous said...

I sent mom lots of sights where you can read newspapers, etc...from that time period. Mayville has lots of stuff....I chose to read about rubicon township..and Neosho...Check it out...MB

Anonymous said...

Nana talked about those snows and waking up in the morning to walk through snow in the house when she got up to walk to school in the morning. looks like a good read