The Children’s Blizzard by Melanie Benjamin

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The bestselling author of The Aviator’s Wife reveals a little-known story of courage on the prairie: the freak blizzard that struck the Great Plains, threatening the lives of hundreds of immigrant homesteaders–especially their children.

The morning of January 12, 1888, was unusually mild, following a long cold spell, warm enough for the homesteaders of the Dakota territory to venture out again, and for their children to return to school without their heavy coats–leaving them unprepared when disaster struck. At just the hour when most prairie schools were letting out for the day, a terrifying, fast-moving blizzard struck without warning. Schoolteachers as young as sixteen were suddenly faced with life and death decisions: keep the children inside, to risk freezing to death when fuel ran out, or send them home, praying they wouldn’t get lost in the storm?

Based on actual oral histories of survivors, the novel follows the stories of Raina and Gerda Olsen, two sisters, both schoolteachers–one who becomes a hero of the storm, and one who finds herself ostracized in the aftermath. It’s also the story of Anette Pedersen, a servant girl whose miraculous survival serves as a turning point in her life and touches the heart of Gavin Woodson, a newspaperman seeking redemption. It is Woodson and others like him who wrote the embellished news stories that lured immigrants across the sea to settle a pitiless land. Boosters needed immigrants to settle territories into states, and they didn’t care what lies they told them to get them there–or whose land it originally was.

At its heart, this is a story of courage, of children forced to grow up too soon, tied to the land because of their parents’ choices. It is a story of love taking root in the hard prairie ground, and of families being torn asunder by a ferocious storm that is little remembered today–because so many of its victims were immigrants to this country..

  • File Name:the-childrens-blizzard-by-melanie-benjamin.epub
  • Original Title:The Children's Blizzard
  • Creator:
  • Language:en-US
  • Identifier:9780399182297
  • Publisher:Random House Publishing Group
  • Date:2021-01-12
  • File Size:2.543 MB

Table of Content

  • 1. Cover
  • 2. Title Page
  • 3. Copyright
  • 4. Contents
  • 5. Book One: A Disturbance in the West
    • Prologue
    • Chapter 1
    • Chapter 2
    • Chapter 3
    • Chapter 4
    • Chapter 5
    • Chapter 6
    • Chapter 7
    • Chapter 8
    • Chapter 9
    • Chapter 10
    • Chapter 11
    • Chapter 12
    • Chapter 13
    • Chapter 14
    • Chapter 15
    • Chapter 16
    • Chapter 17
    • Chapter 18
    • Chapter 19
    • Chapter 20
    • Chapter 21
    • Chapter 22
    • Chapter 23
  • 6. Book Two: The Maiden of the Prairie
    • Chapter 24
    • Chapter 25
    • Chapter 26
    • Chapter 27
    • Chapter 28
    • Chapter 29
    • Chapter 30
    • Chapter 31
    • Chapter 32
    • Chapter 33
    • Chapter 34
    • Chapter 35
    • Chapter 36
    • Chapter 37
    • Chapter 38
    • Chapter 39
  • 7. Author’s Note
  • 8. Dedication
  • 9. Acknowledgments
  • 10. Other Titles
  • 11. About the Author

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