Trials of the Earth (Hardcover)

The True Story of a Pioneer Woman

By Mary Mann Hamilton

Little Brown and Company, 9780316341394, 336pp.

Publication Date: July 12, 2016

List Price: 27.00*
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The astonishing first-person account of Mississippi pioneer woman struggling to survive, protect her family and make a home in the early American South

Near the end of her life, Mary Mann Hamilton (1866 - c.1936) began recording her experiences in the backwoods of the Mississippi Delta. The result is this astonishing first-person account of a pioneer woman who braved grueling work, profound tragedy, and a pitiless wilderness (she and her family faced floods, tornadoes, fires, bears, panthers, and snakes) to protect her home in the early American South.

An early draft of Trials of the Earth was submitted to a writers' competition sponsored by Little, Brown in 1933. It didn't win, and we almost lost the chance to bring this raw, vivid narrative to readers. Eighty-three years later, in partnership with Mary Mann Hamilton's descendants, we're proud to share this irreplaceable piece of American history. Written in spare, rich prose, Trials of the Earth is a precious record of one woman's extraordinary endurance and courage that will resonate with readers of history and fiction alike.

About the Author

Mary Mann Hamilton was one of the only women to write about homesteading in the Mississippi Delta. Her legacy lives on in her children and their descendants, many of whom still live in the area Hamilton writes about in these pages.

Coverage from NPR