Homestead: An Epic Rich with Emotion in the Post Civil War South

Homestead: An Epic Rich with Emotion in the Post Civil War South

by Betsy Bishop Thomas, Georgia Williams
     
 
Homestead gives an intimate look at the struggles and triumphs of people living in rural Northwest Florida in the late 1800s. With no conveniences at their rustic, handbuilt homes, and with outside communication only by horseriders or the firing of a gun to indicate an emergency, people turned inward relying on their families almost entirely. The nearest doctor is

Overview

Homestead gives an intimate look at the struggles and triumphs of people living in rural Northwest Florida in the late 1800s. With no conveniences at their rustic, handbuilt homes, and with outside communication only by horseriders or the firing of a gun to indicate an emergency, people turned inward relying on their families almost entirely. The nearest doctor is many hours away by horseback. Trips to a faraway town's store or to an equally faraway church are rare. Letters sent to or from the post office might be months reaching their destination. Their food comes almost entirely from animals and poultry raised on the homestead and crops grown on the acreage. Bathing is done in a washtub, when there's enough rainwater. The women work just as hard as the men sometimes inside the houses, sometimes outside in the fields and the barns. Gossip is pervasive, perhaps an entertaining respite from the rigors of daily life. Yet, when trouble looms or help is needed, neighbors rally. Thomas follows the lives of Nate and Melissa York, from the time of their meeting, through their marriage with all its hardships and difficulties, including the death of their first baby, up until the time their home becomes a haven for children previously mistreated in other environments. Nate can't read or write, but Melissa, 17 years younger, teaches him, and both eventually come to share a full understanding of religious faith after a series of tragedies and mishaps tests their beliefs. But while Nate and Melissa may get top billing, the roster of other people also is large. The author's narrative peels back the many layers of the various characters' heroics, as well as their shortcomings andperversities, demonstrating, sometimes graphically, that these "good old days" were all too often something far from good. Not all the characters are human. There is Dewey, Nate's horse, in particular, who is truly like a brother to the man, whose parents lost their lives in a criminal attack when he was just a child. Overall, i'ts an interesting read, not just for those who may have been raised in rural environments, but for anyone who likes to explore character development interwoven with a regional lifestyle, speech patterns and culture

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780942407723
Publisher:
Father & Son Publishing
Publication date:
04/28/2005
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >