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Lillie Davenport: Pioneer Mother Hardcover – July 15, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Oleo Publishing; First edition (July 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0976395517
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976395515
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,424,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Mary Lou Midkiff was born in Los Angeles, California in 1937. In 1950, her family moved to Rankin, Texas where they lived in an oil camp as described in the book. Lillie Davenport Pioneer Mother is her second book. The author is currently at work on a biography of her own family.

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Format: Hardcover
Lillie Davenport: Pioneer Mother is the true-life biography of Lillie Davenport (1877-1972), a woman who truly embodied the spirit of the American West at the close of the pioneer era. She fell in love with cowboy Oscar Midkiff, married, and moved to Texas in 1896; while Oscar was away on cattle drives, she rode sidesaddle, shot antelope with a .38 gun, and bore and raised twelve children. The discovery of oil on her land would change her life but not her character. A fascinating biography that reads as fluidly as a novel, Lillie Davenport: Pioneer Mother is enhanced with black-and-white photographs and an exhaustive genealogy supplement spanning nearly one hundred pages. Also highly recommended is author Mary Lou Midkiff's previous family history book, "Midkiff: A Texas Family, Town, and Way of Life".
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Format: Hardcover
The Texas frontier in the early twentieth century was a "rootin,'tootin" place with rough, tough cowboys heading for the round-up. Their stories filled the pages of many books, from stuffy histories to steamy paperback novels. And let's not forget the television programs and movies. But some important chapters and scenes are missing from these stories.

To a large extent, women are not there. The young brides heading west into the unknown with hearts full of love and spines straight with courage, where are they? We don't read much about the long, lonely months on the prairie with a houseful of children and only an occasional visitor. We miss the stories of taking out the rifle to shoot a rabbit or antelope for the dinner table.

Take Lillie Davenport, who was born in Georgia, after the Civil War, in 1877. While a young girl, she traveled in a covered wagon to the Indian Territory where she met and married Oscar Midkiff. The young couple moved to the Texas frontier near Midland, where Oscar worked as a cowboy and later a rancher. Lillie mothered twelve children while she lived that lonely prairie existence. (She was a mighty good shot; she could bring down an antelope from her buggy seat!) This long-lived pioneer woman spent her later years looking forward to watching Perry Mason on Saturday night.

Lillie's fascinating story will not be lost, thanks to the efforts of her granddaughter-in-law, Mary Lou Davis Midkiff. Using a variety of sources, Midkiff presents a vital picture not only of this brave woman, but also of the Midkiff family, and twentieth century West Texas from frontier times to the oil boom. This book will be greatly valuable to historians of the region.
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