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About Miantae Metcalf McConnell
Combining inherent knowledge of regional history with research finds (official and personal documents, diaries and letters) Miantae composed a comprehensive narrative of Montana's pioneers of diverse ethnic origins, treasure seekers, and native Americans. This chronicle is the most accurate and intimate biography of Mary Fields's frontier life and legacy.
Midwest Book Review states, "Deliverance Mary Fields will delight readers who look for a blend of accurate historical facts, hard-hitting drama, and realistic scenes powered by a feisty protagonist whose values and concerns become part of the social changes sweeping the nation."
If you would like to learn more about Mary Fields and Montana pioneer residents from Deliverance Mary Fields, 1885 to 1914, visit www.miantaemetcalfmcconnell.com or www.huzzahpublishing.com where you can: check the calendar for author presentations and book signings, sign up for discounts and news and learn about upcoming book releases.
Miantae lives near the Rocky Mountains in Montana's big sky country. Her Montana pioneer ancestors include the Metcalf and Dowling families, both of whom held long-term political careers in Montanan nineteenth and twentieth-century politics.
During research for Deliverance Mary Fields, McConnell discovered documentation that enabled USPS to verify Mary Fields as the first African American woman star route mail carrier in the United States. She also located the voter registration ledger that includes Mary Fields's registration, and thus, establishes her as the first person of color to register for the vote in Cascade, Montana.
See the Amazon page for Deliverance Mary Fields by Miantae Metcalf McConnell to read the book description: how the story begins in 1885.
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A FEATURED OPRAH "10 Titles to Pick Up Now" February 2018
AWARD-WINNING CREATIVE NONFICTION BIOGRAPHY
1885 - 1914. Mary Fields, a fifty-three-year-old second-generation slave, emancipated and residing in Toledo, receives news of her friend’s impending death. Remedies packed in her satchel, Mary rushes to board the Northern Pacific. Days later, she arrives in the Montana wilderness to find Mother Mary Amadeus lying on frozen earth in a broken-down cabin. Certain that the cloister of frostbit Ursuline nuns and their students, Indian girls rescued from nearby reservations, will not survive without assistance, Mary decides to stay.
She builds a hennery, makes repairs to living quarters, cares for stock, and treks into the mountains to provide food. Brushes with death do not deter her. Mary drives a horse and wagon through perilous terrain and sub-zero blizzards to improve the lives of missionaries, homesteaders and Indians and, in the process, her own.
After weathering wolf attacks, wagon crashes and treacherous conspiracies by scoundrels, local politicians, and the state’s first Catholic bishop, Mary Fields creates another daring plan. An avid patriot, she is determined to register for the vote. The price is high. Will she manifest her personal vision of independence?
PRAISE FOR DELIVERANCE
O, THE OPRAH MAGAZINE
...former slave who braved the Montana Rockies on a journey to rescue a dying friend is the real-life subject of this 19th-century frontier narrative. Adventure abounds in this little-known tale of the heroic middle-aged woman who became the first female African American mail carrier in the U.S.— Hamilton Cain
MIDWEST BOOK REVIEW
Under McConnell's hand, frontier challenges and Montana landscapes come to life. Mary Fields is a true historical figure, dramatized in novel format. Her story will delight readers who look for a blend of accurate historical facts, hard-hitting drama, and realistic scenes powered by a feisty protagonist whose concerns become part of the social changes sweeping the nation.—Diane Donovan
Miantae Metcalf McConnell has fashioned a historical narrative marrying prose and poetry, fact with creative writing. With the discerning eye of a photographer, the deft hand of a historian, and the literary heart of a poet, the life of Mary Fields rises majestically off the page into living history.—Michael Searles, Author, Professor, Augusta University
Powerfully written with excellent characterization. The author knows her history and seamlessly has her characters live within it...prose is lovely; every sentence a joy to read...well researched, I’d recommend to history students, strong hero. A fascinating, hard-hitting saga. Highly recommended.—Wishing Shelf Book Awards, U.K.
MCCONNELL’S RESEARCH enabled USPS historians to verify Mary Fields as the first African American woman star route mail carrier in the U.S. A fact-based chronicle of Fields’ life in Montana from 1885 until her death, the narrative examines women rights, bootleg politics, Montana’s turn-of-the-century transition from territory to state and its scandalous 1914 woman suffrage election.
Who were the black cowboys? They were drovers, foremen, fiddlers, cowpunchers, cattle rustlers, cooks, and singers. They worked as wranglers, riders, ropers, bulldoggers, and bronc busters. They came from varied backgrounds—some grew up in slavery, while free blacks often got their start in Texas and Mexico. Most who joined the long trail drives were men, but black women also rode and worked on western ranches and farms.
The first overview of the subject in more than fifty years, Black Cowboys in the American West surveys the life and work of these cattle drivers from the years before the Civil War through the turn of the twentieth century. Including both classic, previously published articles and exciting new research, this collection also features select accounts of twentieth-century rodeos, music, people, and films. Arranged in three sections—“Cowboys on the Range,” “Performing Cowboys,” and “Outriders of the Black Cowboys”—the thirteen chapters illuminate the great diversity of the black cowboy experience.
Like all ranch hands and riders, African American cowboys lived hard, dangerous lives. But black drovers were expected to do the roughest, most dangerous work—and to do it without complaint. They faced discrimination out west, albeit less than in the South, which many had left in search of autonomy and freedom. As cowboys, they could escape the brutal violence visited on African Americans in many southern communities and northern cities.
Black cowhands remain an integral part of life in the West, the descendants of African Americans who ventured west and helped settle and establish black communities. This long-overdue examination of nineteenth- and twentieth-century black cowboys ensures that they, and their many stories and experiences, will continue to be known and told.