Judy Crockett

Judy Crockett
Judy Crockett

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Bold Spirit

2011 will require BOLD SPIRIT in many of us as we face new challenges. Linda Hunt, author of the book Bold Spirit spoke at one of our many Women's netWork luncheons - - I thought I would bring her back to our consciences in Manistee. Check it out; pull it off your book shelf; dust it off; read it again; recharge. Enjoy!

Desperate. Determined. Unwaveringly confident. In 1896, a Norwegian immigrant named Helga Estby dares to cross 3500 miles of the American continent to win a $10,000 wager. On Foot.

A mother of eight living children, she attempts to save her family's homestead in Eastern Washington after the 1893 depression had ravaged the American economy. Fearing homelessness and family poverty, Helga responds to a wager from a mysterious sponsor, casts off the cultural corsets of Victorian femininity, and gambles her family's future by striking out with her eldest daughter to try to be the first women to travel unescorted across the country: independent, audacious, alert, and armed with a Smith-and-Wesson revolver.

Almost a century later, author Linda Hunt recreates Helga Estby's story in Bold Spirit: her culture and time, her abiding love of America, her heartbreaks and resilient faith, and her challenge to Victorian constraints as she lived on the transitional edge of a new century of possibilities and changing beliefs about women.

For many modern readers, an enduring question remains about what happens when stories go unspoken between us and what keeps family stories alive. Helga's is a rag-rug history, woven from discarded remnants and submerged details, a once-forgotten saga that sheds insight into women's history and demonstrates the tenacious spirit of the human will.


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