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Little heathens: Hard Times and High Spirits on an Iowa Farm During the Great Depression

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I tell of a time, a place, and a way of life long gone. For many years I have had the urge to describe that treasure trove, lest it vanish forever. So, partly in response to the basic human instinct to share feelings and experiences, and partly for the sheer joy and excitement of it all, I report on my early life. It was quite a romp.So begins Mildred Kalish's story of growing up on her grandparents' Iowa farm during the depths of the Great Depression. With her father banished from the household for mysterious transgressions, five-year-old Mildred and her family could easily have been overwhelmed by the challenge of simply trying to survive. This, however, is not a tale of suffering.Kalish counts herself among the lucky of that era. She had caring grandparents who possessed—and valiantly tried to impose—all the pioneer virtues of their forebears, teachers who inspired and befriended her, and a barnyard full of animals ready to be tamed and loved. She and her siblings and their cousins from the farm across the way played as hard as they worked, running barefoot through the fields, as free and wild as they dared.Filled with recipes and how-tos for everything from catching and skinning a rabbit to preparing homemade skin and hair beautifiers, apple cream pie, and the world's best head cheese (start by scrubbing the head of the pig until it is pink and clean), Little Heathens portrays a world of hardship and hard work tempered by simple rewards. There was the unsurpassed flavor of tender new dandelion greens harvested as soon as the snow melted; the taste of crystal clear marble-sized balls of honey robbed from a bumblebee nest; the sweet smell from the body of a lamb sleeping on sun-warmed grass; and the magical quality of oat shocking under the light of a full harvest moon.Little Heathens offers a loving but realistic portrait of a "hearty-handshake Methodist" family that gave its members a remarkable legacy of kinship, kindness, and remembered pleasures. Recounted in a luminous narrative filled with tenderness and humor, Kalish's memoir of her childhood shows how the right stuff can make even the bleakest of times seem like "quite a romp."
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ISBN:
9780553804959
9781456106058
9780553903782
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID584ee630-374d-6f09-e2c6-4d7a79969700
Grouping Titlelittle heathens hard times and high spirits on an iowa farm during the great depression
Grouping Authormildred armstrong kalish
Grouping Categorybook
Grouping LanguageEnglish (eng)
Last Grouping Update2021-03-03 02:27:12AM
Last Indexed2021-03-02 02:57:25AM
Novelist Primary ISBN9780553804959

Solr Details

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auth_author2Phimister, Ruth Ann.
authorKalish, Mildred Armstrong.
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Valley Hi-North Laguna
display_descriptionI tell of a time, a place, and a way of life long gone. For many years I have had the urge to describe that treasure trove, lest it vanish forever. So, partly in response to the basic human instinct to share feelings and experiences, and partly for the sheer joy and excitement of it all, I report on my early life. It was quite a romp.
So begins Mildred Kalish's story of growing up on her grandparents' Iowa farm during the depths of the Great Depression. With her father banished from the household for mysterious transgressions, five-year-old Mildred and her family could easily have been overwhelmed by the challenge of simply trying to survive. This, however, is not a tale of suffering.
Kalish counts herself among the lucky of that era. She had caring grandparents who possessed—and valiantly tried to impose—all the pioneer virtues of their forebears, teachers who inspired and befriended her, and a barnyard full of animals ready to be tamed and loved. She and her siblings and their cousins from the farm across the way played as hard as they worked, running barefoot through the fields, as free and wild as they dared.
Filled with recipes and how-tos for everything from catching and skinning a rabbit to preparing homemade skin and hair beautifiers, apple cream pie, and the world's best head cheese (start by scrubbing the head of the pig until it is pink and clean), Little Heathens portrays a world of hardship and hard work tempered by simple rewards. There was the unsurpassed flavor of tender new dandelion greens harvested as soon as the snow melted; the taste of crystal clear marble-sized balls of honey robbed from a bumblebee nest; the sweet smell from the body of a lamb sleeping on sun-warmed grass; and the magical quality of oat shocking under the light of a full harvest moon.
Little Heathens offers a loving but realistic portrait of a "hearty-handshake Methodist" family that gave its members a remarkable legacy of kinship, kindness, and remembered pleasures. Recounted in a luminous narrative filled with tenderness and humor, Kalish's memoir of her childhood shows how the right stuff can make even the bleakest of times seem like "quite a romp."
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subject_facetBenton County (Iowa) -- Biography
Benton County (Iowa) -- Rural conditions
Benton County (Iowa) -- Social life and customs -- 20th century
Depressions -- 1929 -- Iowa -- Benton County
Farm life -- Iowa -- Benton County -- History -- 20th century
Iowa -- Social life and customs -- 20th century
Kalish, Mildred Armstrong -- Childhood and youth
Kalish, Mildred Armstrong -- Family
New Deal, 1933-1939 -- Iowa -- Benton County
Rural families -- Iowa -- Benton County
title_displayLittle heathens : hard times and high spirits on an Iowa farm during the Great Depression
title_fullLittle Heathens Hard Times and High Spirits on an Iowa Farm During the Great Depression
Little heathens : hard times and high spirits on an Iowa farm during the Great Depression / Mildred Armstrong Kalish
Little heathens : hard times and high spirits on an Iowa farm during the Great Depression [electronic resource] / Mildred Armstrong Kalish
title_shortLittle heathens
title_subHard Times and High Spirits on an Iowa Farm During the Great Depression
topic_facetBiography & Autobiography
Childhood and youth
Depressions
Family
Family & Relationships
Farm life
History
Kalish, Mildred Armstrong
New Deal, 1933-1939
Nonfiction
Rural conditions
Rural families
Social life and customs