Fred Lewis Pattee, long regarded as the father of American literary study, also wrote fiction. Originally published in 1905 by Henry Holt, The House of the Black Ring was Pattee’s second novel—a local-color romance set in the mountains of Central Pennsylvania. The book’s plot is driven by family feud, forbidden love, and a touch of the supernatural. This new edition makes this novel accessible to new generations of modern-day readers. General readers will find in The House of the Black Ring a thriller that preserves details of rural life and language during the late nineteenth century. Scholars will read it as an expression of cultural anxiety and change in the decades after the Civil War.
An introduction by poet and essayist Julia Spicher Kasdorf situates the novel within the context of social and literary history, as well as Pattee’s own biography, and provides a compelling argument for its importance, not only as a literary artifact or record of local customs, but also as a reflection of Pattee’s own story intertwined with the history of Penn State at the turn of the twentieth century. Joshua Brown draws on his expertise in Pennsylvania German ethno-linguistics to interpret the dialect writing and to give readers a clearer view of the customs and regionalisms depicted in the book.
|Publisher:||Penn State University Press|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||903 KB|
About the Author
Julia Spicher Kasdorf is Associate Professor of English and Women’s Studies at Penn State. In 2009 Penn State Press released a paperback edition of her collection of essays, The Body and the Book: Writing from a Mennonite Life.
Joshua R. Brown is Assistant Professor of German at the University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire.
Table of Contents
Introduction Julia Spicher Kasdorf vii
Note on the Publication History James L. W. West III xxv
The House of the Black Ring
Preface to the 1916 Edition 5
I The Affair at Tressler's Farm 7
II Where the Devil Treads, Who Looks for Snow? 22
III Rose Hartswick 33
IV The Wooing at Hartswick Hall 40
V The Horse-Racing on Moon Run 49
VI The Windy Side of the Law 64
VII The Flitting Dinner 75
VIII The Firing of Heller's Cabin 85
IX The Fire on Cherry Creek 99
X The Mill Down Foaming Valley 111
XI Lona Heller 122
XII The Play and the Chorus 129
XIII The Pow-wowing at Roaring Run 138
XIV In the Wild Azalea 146
XV The Murder in Sugar Valley 153
XVI The Mob at Heller's Gap 168
XVII The Hour of the Powers of Darkness 181
XVIII In the Heart of the Limestone 189
XIX The Last of the Hartswicks 198
XX The Revenge of Matthew Heller 209