Mostly Mississippi: A Very Damp Adventure

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In 1925, Harold Speakman and his new wife, Frances "Russell" Lindsay Speakman, journeyed down the entire Mississippi River, from the headwaters in Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico, on a twenty-foot houseboat. A classic American travel narrative that captures the soul of the river, Mostly Mississippi features lyrical descriptions of encounters with archetypal characters, landscapes, and experiences. The Speakmans meet lumberjacks in northern Minnesota and Mormons at Nauvoo, Illinois, as well as roustabouts, hoboes, farmers, drifters, Southern grandees, Native Americans, collegians thirsting for the real world, and convicts. They also meet William Alexander Percy, the "Poet of the Delta"; Laura Frazer, the inspiration for Mark Twain's Becky Thatcher; and the prototypical "lady from Dubuque" as described by the New Yorker. Illustrated by Harold Speakman's paintings and sketches and Russell Speakman's delightful drawings, Mostly Mississippi captures the deepening emotional bond of a newly married couple embarked on a grand adventure.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780816644384
  • Publisher: University of Minnesota Press
  • Publication date: 2/29/2004
  • Series: Fesler-Lampert Minnesota Heritage Book Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 408
  • Product dimensions: 5.75 (w) x 8.44 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

I Ducks & Personae 1
II The Young River 14
III The Thicket 29
IV Lady into Catfish 41
V Sss-Bang! 51
VI Some Who Stray 62
VII Good-By Canoe 82
VIII Shantyboat 97
IX Off 106
X A Wreck or Two 119
XI "You'll Tie Up--" 128
XII Slough, Bird, Model 138
XIII Cities 149
XIV Mormons 162
XV Becky and Ignition 173
XVI The Smoky Saint 191
XVII Land of Egypt 208
XVIII Here's Dixie 222
XIX Along the Levees 241
XX Color of the South 255
XXI Bugle Echo 273
XXII Memory Lane 283
XXIII Hobo Jungle 297
XXIV Drift 308
XXV The Tide 323
XXVI The Bayous 332
XXVII The Joyous City 345
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