LAND OF MANY HANDS by Harriet Sigerman


Women in the American West
Age Range: 12 - 15
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 ``You Will Wonder How I Can Bear It'' is the title of one chapter in a book that attempts to account for the women who helped settle the West, but its scope often includes almost every manner of prejudice and suffering that occurs to any people during that place and time. There are quotations from diaries and letters, frequently so compelling that readers will want to know more about the event or person mentioned. Similarly, a survey of beliefs and customs of various native people pile up, one after the other, with no real context. Sigerman's enthusiasm is plain, but she races through the material, tantalizing readers without drawing them in. There is plentiful information, however, on wagon train journeys, homemaking on the frontier, women in unconventional roles in the West, and the development of communities. Researchers can use the extensive index or the intriguing black-and-white photographs, maps, and reproductions, with haunting images of sod and adobe houses, land sale posters, and women hunting, farming, and roping cattle. This is not a comprehensive volume, but along with its long list of further reading, it has its place as supplementary material. (Nonfiction. 12-15)

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-19-509942-7
Page count: 188pp
Publisher: Oxford Univ.
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15th, 1997